WHAT and WHO is really covered in the case of an Automobile accident?

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A message from OPSEU/SEFPO’s insurance provider, RGI Group.

A car accident is a terrible situation to find yourself in, no matter what the circumstances. If it happened to you, do you have the coverage you need or expect? What happens when you discover the driver who hit you is underinsured or uninsured? Let’s take a closer look at standard auto insurance and some possible scenarios.

Standard auto insurance: The basics

In Ontario*, all motorists are required by law to carry auto insurance. The minimum coverage required is meant to provide a basic level of protection to both you and others should an accident happen. Standard auto insurance includes:

  • Third-party liability coverage: Covers the cost of any injury or damage you may have caused to an individual or their property. You are required to carry a minimum of $200,000 in third-party liability coverage, but your insurance broker can offer supplemental coverage.
  • Statutory accident benefits coverage: If you are injured in an automobile accident, this coverage will provide benefits for rehabilitation, loss of income, supplementary medical and other care necessities. This coverage applies regardless of who caused the accident.
  • Direct compensation – property damage (DC-PD) coverage: Covers damage to your vehicle, or its contents, when another individual is responsible for the accident. [Note: This coverage is only applicable if the accident takes place in Ontario, there is at least one other vehicle involved in the accident, and at least one of the other vehicles is insured by a company licensed in Ontario.]
  • Uninsured automobile coverage: If you are in an accident involving a hit-and-run driver or an uninsured driver, this coverage comes into play. It provides protection in case of injury or death for you and your family, as well as protection in case of damage to your vehicle by an identified motorist.

* Ontario’s Automobile Policy states if you are in an accident outside of Ontario and that place has a higher minimum liability coverage than Ontario, the higher amount will be honoured. However, the policy also states it will not pay more than that amount. For example, if your damages cost $500,000, but the minimum liability is $300,000, you would only receive compensation for the lower amount.

Optional Auto Insurance Add-ons: Upgrades to coverage

  • Collision coverage: Collision coverage pays for damages to your vehicle should you collide with another vehicle or object. No matter who is at fault, the damage to your vehicle will be covered. If you finance or lease, you will likely be required to carry collision coverage. Otherwise, the coverage is optional, though it’s wise to have if you are ever involved in a hit-and-run accident. After all, repairing a car can be quite expensive.
  • Optional Increased Accident Benefit Coverage: Although there is a standard amount of accident benefits coverage required by law, the costs associated with rehabilitation and recovery from a serious or catastrophic injury will most likely far exceed the minimum. Additional coverage is available to cover things such as: income replacement; medical, rehabilitation and attendant care; optional catastrophic impairment; caregiver, housing and home maintenance; death and funeral; dependant care; and an indexation benefit.

Not only is it crucial to make sure you have the proper automobile insurance coverage for your own safety and that of your passengers, it’s also the law. If you have questions about your automobile insurance or want to find out about other coverage options available to you, you should speak to your insurance broker.

Note: This content is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing, financial, medical or legal advice. You should contact your attorney, doctor, broker or advisor to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem.

RGI’s team of insurance professionals is standing by to answer your call. If you have questions about your insurance, we invite you to call us and speak to one of our team members.

We are available Monday to Friday, 9am until 4:30pm.

Phone: 416.477.7687

Toll Free: 833.90.GROUP