The Motor Ombudsman, the automotive dispute resolution provider, has upgraded its online Knowledge Base (TheMotorOmbudsman.org/knowledge-base) with the introduction of a new category on the Coronavirus (COVID-19). It has been designed to help consumers answer frequently asked queries on car ownership, vehicle maintenance and dispute resolution, following the latest government measures which have recently been implemented in the UK.

Joining the existing FAQs on electric vehicles and The Motor Ombudsman’s four Motor Industry Codes of Practice, it is the seventh section to be added to the popular online resource, which is accessible via the “Find an answer” button at the top of every page of TheMotorOmbudsman.org. The set of questions under the Coronavirus heading touches on subjects, such as the implications of the six-month extension of MOT certificates for cars due to have their annual test after the 30th of March 2020, how to find a local garage if the consumer’s regular business has shut its doors on a temporary basis, and the recommended next steps if a service has been pre-booked to be undertaken in the coming weeks. Similarly, the concern of a manufacturer’s warranty agreement being invalidated if a vehicle owner is unable to service their car due to self-isolation, is also discussed.

Other areas that are covered in the new category relate to the dispute resolution process, namely the procedures that have been put in place by The Motor Ombudsman to ensure an uninterrupted service during the current period of remote working, as well as what a consumer is able to do in the event that they are not receiving a response to their complaint from a business. As subsequent government guidelines are unveiled going forward, The Motor Ombudsman’s Knowledge Base, Information Centre and social media channels will all be updated in order to keep motorists informed of the latest developments impacting both the use and upkeep of their vehicle.

Since being launched in January 2019, the Knowledge Base has witnessed in excess of 200,000 article views, with over 50,000 of these being in the first quarter of 2020, the highest ever number seen by The Motor Ombudsman in a three-month period. Further highlighting its popularity, user searches have equally increased compared to the last quarter of 2019, with more than 11,500 seen between the 01st of January and the 31st of March 2020.

Bill Fennell, Chief Ombudsman and Managing Director of The Motor Ombudsman, explained: “The latest government advice and restrictions to help stem the transmission of the Coronavirus have naturally had an impact on the automotive retail and aftermarket sectors. Therefore, our objective with launching the new category on the Knowledge Base was to provide motorists with a one-stop hub of information to help address some of the key questions and concerns about vehicle ownership and maintenance, and to ensure that they are up-to-date with the latest measures that have been put in place in what is a very fast changing landscape.”

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