The small print that can be found on some car insurance policies contains more words than George Orwell’s novel Animal Farm, the latest research has revealed.

A study by consumer website Fairer Finance found that the motor insurance documents produced by Endsleigh, Sheila's Wheels, Esure and M&S Bank all came to over 30,000 words. Another insurer, LV, had much shorter terms and conditions which totalled fewer than 7,000 words.

In a survey by the same website, it was revealed that under a third of the 2,000 people asked said they actually read the terms and conditions of their car insurance policies. Subsequently, the Association of British Insurers (ABI), an insurance trade body, has said that it was working with regulators to improve paperwork for customers.

James Dailey, founder of Fairer Finance, commented on the company’s somewhat concerning findings. He said: "Even those who do [read the small print] are struggling to understand them, [so] what exactly is the point of these documents?

"Of course, it is important that customers know what is covered and what isn't in their insurance policy, but if one company can do the job in less than 7,000 words, there is no excuse for insurers who are producing documents that are five times as long."

James King, head of conduct regulation at ABI, responded: "Insurers are continuing to look at ways to improve their communications with customers and are working with the regulator to further improve the quality of disclosure documents."

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