Irish Drivers Will Need Special Insurance to Enter Northern Ireland After Hard Brexit

March 1, 2019

Irish drivers have been warned they will need a special insurance document to cross the currently invisible border to Northern Ireland after next month if the U.K. leaves the European Union without a deal.

The Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland said Wednesday that it has issued insurance firms with 1 million application forms for the internationally recognized “Green Card” document.

British drivers travelling to Ireland or other EU countries will also need the paperwork – just one of a host of new rules and hurdles citizens will need to negotiate if Britain crashes out of the bloc without a framework for departure terms and future relations.

Currently, auto insurance in any EU country covers the whole bloc.

If there is a deal, there will be no change until at least the end of 2020.

Britain is due to leave the 28-nation bloc on March 29 but so far its Parliament has rejected the government’s divorce deal with the EU, raising the prospect of a chaotic “no deal” Brexit.

Governments in EU countries, as well as in Britain, have warned citizens and businesses to prepare for potential disruption to trade and travel as tariffs, customs checks and other barriers are put up between Britain and its biggest trading partner.

But U.K. authorities admitted this week that neither individuals nor businesses are ready for a “no-deal” departure, and “the short time remaining before 29 March 2019 does not allow government to unilaterally mitigate the effects of no deal.”

British Prime Minister Theresa May is seeking changes to her Brexit deal from the EU, and says U.K. lawmakers will get to vote on it again by March 12. If it is rejected, lawmakers will then vote on whether to leave the EU without an agreement or seek to postpone Brexit by up to three months.

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