Any driver in Ontario must have valid car insurance that meets minimum standards set by the provincial government. Insurance agents and brokers cannot sell less than the minimum amount. There are also upgrades to this coverage and additional features that can be added to enhance and customize your policy. Check with the Financial Services Commission of Ontario, the insurance industry overseer, to know more about Ontario car insurance.
Basics of car Insurance in Ontario
Like all other provinces in Canada, it is mandated by law that all drivers carry a minimum car insurance in third-party liability coverage as well as accident benefits coverage. Beyond this minimum, you can choose to add other optional coverages including collision and comprehensive. The limited third-party liability provides coverage for an insured Ontario driver in the event of an accident that results in property damage, injury or even death. Insured drivers in Ontario have the option of buying additional coverage based on their specific needs.
No-Fault Insurance in Ontario
In a traditional system, the insurance company of the driver at fault will pay the claim for their insured party as well as for the other party because their driver is at fault.Whereas in a no-fault system regardless of who was at fault, your insurance company will be the one to pay your claim while the claim of the other party will also be paid by their insurance company. This system makes it possible for claims to be paid as soon as possible without having to go through the rigors of fault determination. Your insurance provider will still increase your premium if you are found to be at fault.
Ontario’s Fault Determination Rules
The process of Fault determination in Ontario is simple and direct. The set of rules has been put in place to reduce the time involved in determining who was at fault and to avert disagreements among drivers and insurance companies so that the process is not delayed. The rule applies in Ontario regardless of the road or weather conditions, because drivers are expected to adjust their driving to suit the road conditions to avoid accidents. The fault is assigned between on a scale from 0% to 100%, but may also be shared equally in some instances. Fault determination may be appealed if there is a need, but in most cases it is not.
The Private Insurance System
Ontario has a private insurance system, which means you are allowed to compare quotes from different insurance companies to find the best deal. The system makes it possible for drivers in Ontario to get cheap and affordable car insurance quotes because the prices are competitive. Insurance companies decide their rates, so car insurance quotes from one insurance company may differ significantly from another.
Compulsory Minimum Third Party Liability
Drivers must have $200,000 worth of coverage for any accident. If a claim involves both bodily injury and property damage more than this amount, payment for property damage will be capped at $10,000.
Policies in Ontario are required to cover up to $3,500 for a minor injury or up to $50,000 per person for non-minor and non-catastrophic injuries for up to ten years. For catastrophic injuries,$1 million in coverage is required. Attendant care is also necessary up to $36,000 for non-minor and non-catastrophic injuries while $1 million is required for catastrophic injuries.
Funeral Expense Benefits
If an accident results in death, the car insurance of the driver must cover the funeral expenses of the person killed. The amount allocated for this expense is $6,000.
Disability Income Benefits
Insurance must also replace 70% of gross wages to a maximum of $400 per week or $185 per week for 104 or more weeks. During the first seven days, no payments are made. A non-earner benefit is also included in the mandate at a rate of $185 per week for 104 weeks. There is a 26-week wait period and a limit of two years. If the person is still disabled after 104 weeks, the benefit increases to $320 per week. Certain exclusions apply.
If the victim dies within 180 days of the accident, the spouse is awarded $25,000, minimum. Additionally, each surviving dependent is allowed $10,000. If the victim was living with the parents, $10,000 goes to each parent or guardian.
Right to Sue for Pain & Suffering
If the injury meets a severity test, a lawsuit is allowed if the person dies or sustains permanent and serious disfigurement. They may also sue if there is impairment of an important physical, mental or psychological function. After damages are assessed, $30,000 is deducted.
Right to Sue for Economic Loss in No-Fault Benefits
Income replacement awarded above the no-fault benefit is based on the net income after deductions for income tax. Injured parties may sue for 70% of net income loss before trial or 100% of gross income after the trial.
Minimum mandatory coverage protects people and damage that you cause to other people’s property. It doesn’t protect your car from loss or damage, except in some circumstances where the other driver is fully at fault. “Fault” for insurance purposes is different than fault assigned by a police officer, and there’s no guarantee that these will coincide. This creates the need for collision and comprehensive insurance to protect you from financial loss in case of an accident or theft.
Protects against loss due to an accident. Depending on the coverage level and options you choose, this could include not only repairs, but car rental coverage while your car is in the shop. You can even protect a new car against depreciation for the first few years of its life.
Takes care of non-collision damage to your car. Vandalism, fire, and theft are all covered, as is damage from extreme weather, such as hail.
Both collision and comprehensive insurance are subject to deductibles. Your deductible amount is what you pay as part of an insurance claim before the insurance company contributes. A low deductible costs more in premiums, while a high deductible lowers your cost.
Optional insurance add-ons are called endorsements or riders. These permit you to customise your policy with features that are important to you. Someone who rents cars frequently may add a non-owned vehicle endorsement, if it’s not already part of a package offered by their insurer. Different insurance companies may have varying optional endorsements and feature packages.