This is regardless of whether a legal or illegal e-scooter is used by the criminal 

Criminals that use e-scooters as a getaway vehicle could be faced with the prospect of the insurer or Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) pursuing them for a reimbursement of claims.

Should the criminals decide to use a hired legal e-scooter which is insured by the hire company, it is likely that the insurers will be obliged to meet any claims.

This is according to Glyn Thompson head of Forum of Insurance Lawyer’s (FOIL) motor sector focus team, and associate at Weightmans law firm, he told Insurance Times that this was because: “Motor insurers have obligations wide of strict policy cover under the Road Traffic Act, and under the rules of membership of the MIB.

“Whether using a legal or an illegal e-scooter the criminal faces the prospect of the insurer or MIB pursuing them for reimbursement, although such threat may not prove too much of a deterrent.

”If the criminal is untraced MIB foots the bill for any claim and passes that loss on to insurers through the levy who, in turn, pass that cost to the motoring public.

”Ultimately, unless the criminal pays, the public does in the end.”

It follows police revealing that e-scooters are fast becoming the “getaway vehicle of choice” with nearly 300 reported incidences in crime over the last four months.

Essentially invisible 

Thompson continued: “The appeal for criminals has been that private e-scooters – being illegal to use outside of private land - are incapable of being registered with DVLA so are essentially ‘invisible’.

”Those committing or fleeing from crimes on such illegally used e-scooters, however, are still riding a motor vehicle, albeit without insurance.

“It seems inevitable that innocent people will be injured by careless riding or other vehicles will be hit and damaged.

”Those who are caused to suffer loss will be able to present a claim to the MIB to recover such losses, provided the losses are not capable of being paid for by other insurance (such as a vehicle owner’s comprehensive insurance).”

Robust regulatory framework

Meanwhile a spokesperson for the ABI said: “[With] e-scooter trials are taking place across parts of the UK, insurers are closely monitoring the progress.

”However, currently the use of e-scooters outside of these trials remains illegal. If micro-mobility devices are to be used on the roads, it is imperative that a robust regulatory framework is introduced that allows for safe and legal use.

“We strongly oppose the implementation of any approach that could result in liabilities falling onto the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) and, by implication, premium-paying motorists.

”The insurance industry is working closely with the government to help deliver the right levels of protections for users of e-scooters and other road users should they become legalised in the future.”

The MIB has been contacted for comment.