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HomeCar Insurance ResourcesCan I Have Auto Insurance from Another Province?

Canadians are legally required to have automobile insurance on their vehicles. Auto insurance is regulated by the provincial governments and these regulations are different in each one. It is mandatory to hold insurance from an insurance company in the province in which you reside. You must know what is mandatory in your province and what coverage you may want to add.

How Auto Insurance Works

The purpose of auto insurance is to cover the unpredictable loss in the event that you are involved in an automobile incident. Billions of dollars are paid out every year to cover the cost of auto insurance claims in Canada alone. Insurance companies are closely audited to ensure they can cover these costs in the event that the worst does happen.

The federal government via the Office of the Superintendant of Financial Institutions (OSFI) requires insurance companies to have a certain amount of capital on hand to cover every policy they sell. The insurance company must prove that it can cover every potential claim they sell.

Auto Insurance Risk and Auto Insurance Rules Vary by Province

Insurance Risk

Assessing Risk, determining prices, and even how insurance companies may handle claims. A provincial agency within each province regulates the auto insurance industry. Each of these provincial agencies determines which factors can and cannot be used by insurers to set auto insurance rates and how they may be used. Factors including a driver’s age or gender may be used in one province but not in others. All insurers must have their systems for classifying risk assessed and approved by the provincial regulatory agency any time they wish to change insurance rates.

Because each province has its own regulatory agency and set of standards and rules, auto insurance differs greatly from one province to the next. The provincial government can play a major role in determining the level of legal benefits an injured party may receive through auto insurance claims, but also what insurance they may purchase outside of the insurance contract. In one province you may be able to sue for pain and suffering and economic loss beyond their insurance benefits but in another province, they may not or it may be limited or capped at a certain amount. The government also regulates the wording in the industry to ensure it is standardized, that the same terminology is used throughout the insurance agencies within the province.

Out of Province Car Insurance

If you are moving from one province to another with your vehicle, the provincial government generally gives you 90 days to switch your license and insurance as well as the plates on your car. You will require your driver’s license, the complete used vehicle information package, proof of purchase, proof of insurance from a licensed insurer inside the province, original transfer of sale permit, the plate portion of the permit.

About the Author: Valerie D. Hahn

Valerie is an insurance editor, journalist, and business professional at RateLab. She has more than 15 years of experience in personal financial products. She strives to educate readers and ensure that they are properly protected.


  1. Jane 28 July 2020 at 12:18 am - Reply

    I have a recreational vehicle which I store and use in a different province then where I live. The plates are the same as the province it is stored in.
    It is only used 2-3 wks a year
    Is there a special insurance I can get in that province specifically for the short period of time I am using it

    • Andy 21 October 2022 at 4:57 pm - Reply

      I too have the same situation. A vehicle in BC and another in Ontario. One would think information would be readily available but I’m getting nowhere.

      Apparently it’s not a problem if you’re not Canadian and own cars in different provinces – some kind of international license/registration thing. It would seem car rental agencies are able to do it as well… In the US, I understand the recommendation is to insure your cars in the states they (the car) resides. That makes sense.

      I just can’t imagine that it can’t be done. There must be other Canadians that have done this, so why the surprising lack of information?

      I’m beginning to think it’s some kind of “primary residence” dependency and that the only way around it is to establish a company in the 2ndary province and insure the vehicle under that company’s name.

      Anyhow, any info would be greatly appreciated.
      Good luck everyone.

  2. Natalie 27 August 2020 at 1:45 pm - Reply

    Did you get a reply? We are in the same situation

  3. Liberty Celestina De Vera 23 September 2020 at 11:55 am - Reply

    i have a car insurance can i use that car insurance to other province? e.g. prince Edward island to Ontario?

  4. narayani 16 November 2020 at 2:06 pm - Reply

    HI there,
    My official residence is now in Ontario (with a lease as well). However I do not need my own car here, and when i commute back to Quebec, where I have my car, I use it there, b/c i need it there (house is not accessible by public transport as my residence is here in Toronto). Can I continue my insurance there, while having my official residence in Ontario?

  5. narayani 16 November 2020 at 2:10 pm - Reply

    (EDIT) HI there,
    My official residence is now in Ontario (with a lease as well). However I do not need my own car here, and when i commute back to Quebec to visit my owned house, where I have my car, I use it there, b/c i need it there (house is not accessible by public transport as my residence is here in Toronto). Can I continue my insurance *and drivers’s license* there, while having my official residence in Ontario? And tied to this question: if my driver’s license address MUST reflect my official residence, will my rates change accordingly even if my car is not presently used in this province Ontario? Basically I officially live in a province where my own car is not being used.

  6. Kathy 10 April 2021 at 11:08 am - Reply

    I live in Ontario, and have a car and insurance. I have friends who are snowbirds and live in BC. They come for a couple months to Quebec and I would like to have them on my insurance so that I can lend them my car – I don’t use my much in the summer. Can I do this?

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