INCREASING numbers of Irish motorists are taking the risk of driving without insurance to keep food on the table.
Research in the area of insurance has shown that more than one in eight consumers have stopped paying a range of different insurance policies to save for household bills.
The study, conducted on behalf of Friends First, has shown that one in four consumers has abandoned motor insurance, despite the legal obligation to insure your car.
The Motor Insurance Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) has warned motorists that they will be pursued through the courts if they are uninsured and cause an accident.
In 2008, the MIBI paid out €62m to victims of accidents involving uninsured drivers.
The study has shown that 13pc of consumers have ceased paying premiums on policies ranging from travel, life, motor, home and income protection policies.
The figures show that of those who have given up paying premiums, 27pc have given up paying travel insurance with 25pc deciding to ditch life insurance. Householders are also deciding to ditch home and contents insurance, despite Ireland's recent inclement weather of rain and ice ravaging homes across the country.
According to figures from the Central Statistics Office, the cost of household insurance has increased by 17pc in 2009 alone.
Car insurance has gone up 13pc and health insurance has leapt 21pc.
Seven out of 10 consumers have been hit by a fall in income according to the Friends First study.