Is my van insured? How to check for free on AskMID

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Can you drive your van without insurance?
What is AskMID
Check your van is insured
Who you're insured with
What to do if you need insurance
Tax and MOT

Whether you drive a van for business or pleasure, you must ensure that your vehicle meets the requirements of the law. As well as making sure your van is roadworthy with a warranty or MOT certificate, you’ll also need an insurance policy designed specifically for your type of van and its purpose.

Can you drive your van without insurance?

The short answer is no. You need insurance to be road legal.

Insurance protects you financially if you’re involved in an accident, your van is broken into, or it’s stolen. It works similarly to car insurance, but you’ll need a separate policy for your van. If you use your van for social, domestic or pleasure reasons, private van insurance is the ideal choice; however, for work purposes, depending on the type of work, you may require business or commercial van cover.

If we say so ourselves, temporary van insurance is excellent if you’re moving home and doing the work yourself or unsure how long you need a van, whether for one day or a whole month. These policies offer the greatest flexibility and can be instantly extended via your phone.

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Temporary van insurance from an hour to a month. No deposits or hidden fees. Get a quote

What is AskMID?

AskMID allows you to check your van’s insurance status. MID is an abbreviation of the Motor Insurance Database. Enter your registration number, and it will tell you if your policy is valid. (You can also find out if your car is insured).

AskMID is also jam-packed with useful advice about what to do in the event of an accident and how to stay legal on UK roads. It’s the tool that the police use as part of their Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology. If you are involved in an accident, it can also search for the other vehicle’s insurance details - essential for submitting your insurance claim.

With so many scams around, searching for a second-hand van to purchase or choosing which one to borrow can be worrying, but by using AskMID to check if the vehicle has a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN) that the current owner hasn’t told you about, you can relax.

How to check if your van is insured with AskMID

Here's a step-by-step guide for using askMID to find out whether your van is insured.

  1. First, head to
  2. Enter your van registration number in the yellow search box
  3. Read the Data Protection Declaration and check the box if you accept them
  4. Click to confirm you aren’t a robot - unless you are one! 🤖
  5. Click on the ‘Check this vehicle’ button
  6. Check that the van details are correct
  7. AskMID will confirm that the vehicle is either insured or not
  8. If your van’s make and model information is incorrect, you need to contact your insurance provider for them to update the details
  9. If the make and model of your van are missing, it’s down to your insurer not supplying AskMID with the information, but it will still tell you your insurance status.
You can check whether your van is insured at AskMID

How to find out who your van is insured with

Even with the best filing system, paperwork easily gets lost, so how can you determine with which provider your van is insured?

The Motor Insurance Bureau (MIB) - and, yes, we know how annoyingly similar to the MID that is! - has details for every registered vehicle in the UK on their database and manages the MID. For a small fee, they’ll provide information on your insurance history, any claims you’ve made and your current insurance provider.

They can also give you the details of another person, either deceased or living, if you have their permission. This allows you to contact their insurers, informing them of any change of circumstance.

There are other ways to find out who your van insurance is with:

  • Check your emails - Most insurers will email you confirmation and essential policy details. Use the email search bar to look for words that might relate to van insurance, such as your registration number, and this should bring up any relevant emails

  • Check your bank statements - Look through your recent bank statements for names of insurance companies. Sometimes, however, the name on the transaction won’t necessarily be as obvious as the name of the provider - it may be the name of their umbrella company. In this case a quick call to your bank should tell you who your van insurance is with

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What to do if you’re not insured

You'll need to get insurance if you plan to use your van. Policies for vans, as with cars, have three levels of cover available:

  • Fully comprehensive - This covers you and any passengers, your van and any third parties in the event of an accident. It also protects your van against theft, vandalism and fire

  • Third party, fire and theft - provides cover for any third party property damaged by you. It also protects your van against fire and theft; however, it doesn’t pay out for any other types of damage to your van

  • Third party only - this is the minimum legal requirement for taking your van on the road and covers any injuries to third parties or damage to their property

Insurance providers, including Cuvva, often include 'carriage of own goods business use' with their van insurance policies. This covers commuting, travelling between different sites or clients, and carrying your equipment or goods. An app for your mobile phone allows you to get instant van cover, meaning a few clicks and you’re ready to go.

The MIB can check who insures your van
The MIB can check who insures your van

How to register your van as off-road without insurance (SORN)

If you have a van you don’t want to drive on public roads, you can avoid paying tax or insurance on it by completing a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN) declaration.

A SORN prevents you from parking on a public road or in a car park - you’ll have to store your van on a driveway, private land or in a garage. If you are trying to save money and don’t need your van for a period, this can be a good option to explore.

It’s free to apply for SORN, but you will need either:

  • The 16-digit reference number on your tax renewal letter (V11)
  • The 11-digit reference number on your log book (V5C)

If you decide you need to drive your van on public roads again, when you reapply for tax, the SORN is automatically cancelled. The same is true if you sell or scrap your van. If you buy a van that is declared SORN, and you don’t plan on driving it anytime soon, you must apply for the SORN document in your name.

How to check if your car is taxed and when the MOT is due

As it’s illegal to drive on the UK’s public roads without a valid MOT certificate and vehicle tax, it’s essential to know whether your van or car is taxed and when the MOT is due.

Cuvva have developed a high-tech tool to do exactly that - for free!

Simply put your vehicle registration number into the search bar and instantly display the information. It also gives you the option to look at low-cost insurance options. Quick and easy to use, it saves you time and effort while saving you money!

Updated on 31st March 2023