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With the increase in the use of motor vehicles, the accidents that these vehicles have been involved in the visited countries and the damage they have caused to third parties have increased. In those accidents; the fact that one or more of the parties are foreign nationals presented difficulties in settling the damages. Those difficulties have started the notion of facilitating insurance procedures at borders related to international road travel and transport and the search for common insurance.
Following these developments, in 1949 Working Party on Road Transport of the Inland Transport Committee of the Economic Commission for Europe prepared Recommendation No. 5, which states that a single type of motor third party liability insurance is the most appropriate solution for international road trips. Recommendation The text recommends to Member States that insurers undertaking third party risks in relation to vehicle use prepare agreements that are uniform and easy to implement and that motorists are sufficiently insured on their visits to countries where there is an obligation to insure those risks. In light of this recommendation, the Council of Europe, of which Turkey is a member, adopted the "European Convention on Compulsory Insurance against Civil Liability in respect of Motor Vehicles " in order to ensure that liabilities of motor vehicles against third parties and their goods in the event of an accident involving motor vehicles abroad are covered with a compulsory insurance system in countries where road transport is intensive
Each Member State has established a so-called Bureau in its own country to implement those reccomendations and to ensure the functioning of the Green Card system. These Bureaux are today under the umbrella of the Council of Bureaux, headquartered in Brussels. The Council of Bureaux, which is responsible for the functioning and management of the Green Card System,is affiliated with the Working Party on Road Transport of the Inland Transport Committee of the Economic Commission for Europe of the UN.
Green Card is the International Motor Vehicle Insurance Card issued to be valid in the member countries of the Green Card System. The Green Card is the equivalent of Motor Third Party Liability Insurance which is compulsory in the country where the accident occurs. In other words, it provides cover within the MTPL legislation, scope and limits applicable in the country of accident.
In order for Bureaux to be able to resolve and pay for damages promptly, the vehicle causing the accident must have a valid Green Card issued by a member country of the Green Card System valid at the time of the incident.
The presence of the Green Card makes it easier for motorists to travel to member countries of the System.Because it is easy to identify the insurance cover and the insurer of a vehicle having a Green Card,in case of that vehicle causing an accident the damaged third party can be promptly indemnified.
Bureaux are non profit making organizations that represents their country in the Green Card System and are set up to contribute to the operation of the system.
The Bureaux have two important responsibilities in the Green Card System:
- A Bureau provides a guarantee to its government that the foreign insurer will abide by the law applicable in its country and compensate injured parties within its limits,
- A Bureau provides a guarantee to the Bureau of the visited country of the commitment of the member insurer covering third party liability in respect of the use of the vehicle involved in the accident.
2. Claims Handling
- A Bureau is responsible for settling claims in its country on behalf of the Green Card insurer related to accidents caused by foreign vehicles which have a Green Card.,
- A Bureau is authorised to accept service of judicial process and be part of a judicial process related to claims arising out of Green Cards issued abroad.
The International Claims Correspondent refers to an insurer or a person appointed as the claims representative by the proposal of the country Bureau where the green card insurer is a member and the approval of the Bureau of the country of accident, for the purpose of settling claims for damages in foreign countries due to insurance documents issued by the insurance companies.
The rules for approval,withdrawal of approval and other matters are decided by the country Bureaux.
The Bureau has the authority to oversee the actions of the International Claims Correspondent regarding the Green Card claims and to withdraw the claims handled by the Claims Correspondent without any justification.
In addition, the Bureau provides information to the Claims Correspondent about developments in the Green Card System.
1. All Green Cards must comply strictly with the format accepted by the Working Party on Road Transport of the Inland Transport Committee of the Economic Commission for Europe of UN.
2. The colour of the Green Card must be green.
3. No alternation is allowed on the Green Card.
4. An existing section can not be deleted.
5. No information on the Green Card can be changed.
6. The country codes of the members of the EEA and Switzerland are placed in one single box
7. The country codes of the remaining countries are placed in seperate boxes.
8. The website address of the Council of Bureaux has to be written at the reverse side of the Green Card.
9. The Green Card is not valid for the country whose country box is crossed out..
10. The title of the document “INTERNATIONAL MOTOR INSURANCE CARD/CARTE INTERNATIONALE D’ASSURANCE” has to be written in English and French and in the language of the respective Bureau.
11. The beginnig and ending validity period of the Green Card has to be indicated.
12. The country code,the code of the issuing insurer and the Green Card number have to be indicated.
13. The plate number or if not available the chassis or motor number of the insured vehicle have to be indicated.
14. The make and category(trailer,truck,caravan,etc) of the vehicle have to be indicated.
15. The name and address of the policyholder or the user of the vehicle and the name and address of the insurer have be indicated.
16. If the box where the international country code of Turkey which is TR is not crossed out the Green Card is valid for the whole territory of Turkey (both European and Asian side)
17. No added note on the Green Card is valid.
18. The names of the member countries of the System are written on the reverse side together with the names and contact details of the Bureaux.