In Ontario, it’s mandatory that your car is covered by at least a minimum level of auto insurance. You also have rights as an auto insurance consumer. One of these is the right to alter or cancel your policy at any time. An insurer, on the other hand, can’t cancel your policy without a reason and written notice. You may be taking a car off the road or perhaps found a better deal. Whatever your reason, here’s how you can cancel your auto insurance policy before it is due to expire.
Starting the Cancellation Process
When you stop paying for a service, you can usually expect that the service won’t be continued. That’s certainly the case with car insurance, however, it’s an expensive proposition. When you default on payments, the cancellation process then becomes company-driven, as you’ve given them a reason. While not paying has nothing to do with how you drive your vehicle, you’ll be grouped with other high risk drivers. Your premiums in the future will be higher, reflecting your high risk status. That’s if you can find an insurance company that will issue you a policy.
Put It in Writing
The best way to cancel a policy is to do it in writing. It’s the only way really. It makes your intentions clear and spells out details so there is no misunderstanding between you and your broker or agent. Include the following information in your letter of cancellation:
- The policy number for your car insurance account. If you have more than one insurance policy with the same company or broker, this could be critical, so you don’t cancel the wrong coverage.
- The name of not only the main person insured under the car insurance policy but any other drivers named on the policy, such as children or your spouse.
- The name of the company issuing the policy
- The date that you wish the cancellation to take effect. Be specific, so that there is no misunderstanding. Anything vague may leave you uncovered without your knowledge.
- Get signatures from everyone named on the policy. This prevents anyone from later claiming that they had no idea the insurance policy wasn’t in force.
While you aren’t required to send your cancellation by registered mail, it’s a good idea to send it in more than one form. Mail, email, fax or dropping off are all valid. Don’t rely on voice conversations, phone messages or other non-tangible messages. A reputable agent or broker won’t accept such as message anyway since there’s no way to confirm the voice is yours, or easily prove a conversation took place.
Fees to Cancel Your Auto Insurance
Insurers in Ontario are permitted under terms of the Ontario Automobile Policy to use a short rate cancellation table to determine administrative costs for the period of cancellation. If you are early into the policy’s term, this could be costly. There should be no fee to cancel your policy at the end of its term.