Any collector knows the scenario well: there's an exhibition or car show on the horizon, and it's a chance to show off your beloved vehicle to a crowd that's just as passionate as you are!

A friend may have called and convinced you to wheel out your prized possession, or you may have opted to attend entirely by choice.

The Road Traffic Act

Once more, it's important for collectors to be aware of the fine print here – particularly where the Road Traffic Act is concerned.

Provided the event in question is in a public area where the RTA applies, there's probably protection for the car and third-party liability for the owner under their motor insurance policy; this is usually straightforward and not an issue.

Owners and event organisers

Collectors and owners are recommended, however, to be aware of the details of how the law operates between them and their event organisers. Car Club members and event attendees share a great bond with these organisers, and it's beneficial to all to be cognizant of how liability can arise in the event of accidents, theft and damage.

To start, it's recommended that event organisers have their own legal liability insurance – cover which should, of course, extend to protect those exhibiting their cars at the event. Should a third party be injured or suffer damage that is the legal responsibility of the organizer, their policy should respond.

You as the owner of the exhibiting vehicle should have similar protection under your Motor Insurance Policy, but it is always recommended that you advise your insurer that you are exhibiting your vehicle at an event and to confirm that your policy remains in full force.

Damage and theft at events

The problem arises when the unfortunate happens; your vehicle is damaged or, even worse, stolen while it is at the event. The vehicle may have been left overnight at the event and despite all precautions being taken something has happened.

You may feel that the organizer has some responsibility whereas the organizer may feel that the vehicle should be insured by the owner. There is probably no agreement between the organizer and owner, so what is the position?

The organiser's policy will only respond if the organizer is legally liable for the loss or damage. In the absence of an agreement, it will be down to the owner to prove the organizer is legally liable - probably in Negligence. This may well be difficult and costly to prove.

As the owner of the vehicle, you have advised your insurer that you are exhibiting your vehicle at the event and the insurer has confirmed to you that the policy remains in full force. You can make a claim under your policy and take control of the claim with your insurer.

This is the quickest and easiest way to settle such a claim. If the insurer believes that the organizer is legally liable for the incident, they will look to recover their cost from the organizer and their insurers. Provided they can recover their costs, the insurer will remove the claim from your record.

How to handle exhibiting your vehicle at events

So, as an owner what should you do when exhibiting your vehicle at events?

Have a frank conversation with your contact at the event so that you both understand who is liable for damage or loss to your vehicle. You can always contact our Lockton experts directly.

We'll happily look at the wording of your current policy and can discuss the specifics of your event with you to provide accurate advice that can help you make an informed decision as to your attendance and cover during the event itself.