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2016 Ontario Auto Insurance Reforms

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2016 Ontario Auto Insurance Reforms
OMA Insurance
7/7/2016
All Ontario auto insurance changed on June 1st, 2016--find out how your coverage will be changing.

On June 1st, 2016, changes to auto insurance in Ontario came into effect. Although many of these changes won't affect individual policyholders until your policies come up for renewal, some of them will impact you if you have an accident and are injured after June 1st, 2016. ​


 

Significant Changes

The most significant changes will be to medical and rehabilitation care, and new optional accident benefit choices that will let you customize your policy to suit your individual needs.

In case of serious injury, basic auto insurance coverage may not be enough for a lifetime of rehabilitation services. When you receive your annual auto renewal policy, you should read the changes carefully and understand how they will impact you. ​

The changes mean that: 

      • For non-catastrophic injuries, the current medical and rehabilitation care policy ($50,000) and attendant care ($36,000) will be combined and claimable up to $65,000 with the option of increasing the benefit to $130,000.  This new limit is effective for all accidents on or after June 1st, 2016.
      • For catastrophic injuries, the current medical and rehabilitation care ($1,000,000) and attendant care policies ($1,000,000) will be combined, and benefits up to $1,000,000 will claimable. Individuals will also have the option to increase this coverage to $2,000,000 for an extra monthly fee. This new limit is effective for all accidents on or after June 1st, 2016.

Options to increase coverage, including higher limits of Disability Insurance coverage and enhanced benefits are available.


 

Other Key Changes​​ I​​​nclude:

  1. ​Minor Accident – effective on your next policy renewal on or after June 1st, 2016

    Insurers can no longer use a minor at-fault accident to increase your premiums when certain criteria are met. The criteria include that no payment has been made by any insurer, where there are no injuries and the damage to each car and property were less than $2,000 per car and were paid by the at fault driver. This provision is limited to one minor accident every three years.

  2. ​Interest Rate for Monthly Payment Plans – effective your next policy renewal on or after June 1st, 2016

    The maximum interest rate that insurers can charge if you make monthly premium payments has been lowered from 3% to 1.3% for one year policies, with corresponding reductions for shorter terms.

  3. Comprehensive Deductible – effective your next policy renewal on or after June 1st, 2016

    The standard deductible for Comprehensive coverage has been increased from $300 to $500.

  4. Non-Earner Benefit – effective for all accidents on or after June 1st, 2016

    The six-month waiting period for people who are not working to receive benefits has been reduced to four weeks. Also, benefits can now only be received for up to two years after the accident.

  5. Duration of Medical, Rehabilitation and Attendant Care Benefits – effective for all accidents on or after June 1st, 2016

    For all claimants except children, the amount of time that you can receive this standard benefit is now five years for non-catastrophic injuries, and it will be paid only as long as you remain medically eligible.

SUMMARY of STAND​ARD COVERAGES – effective for all accidents on or after June 1st, 2016

Benefit Current Policy New Policy
Medical and Rehabilitation for non-catastrophic injuries $50,000 These benefits have been combined and reduced to $65,000 total ​
Attendant Care for non-catastrophic injuries $36,000
Medical and Rehabilitation for catastrophic injuries $1,000,000 These benefits have been combined and reduced to $1,000,000 total ​
Attendant Care for catastrophic injuries $1,000,000

Some important things to remember about these benefits:

      • If you have previously chosen to purchase optional benefits to increase these amounts, check your policy – they may have changed to reflect amounts available in new options.
      • Medical, Rehabilitation and Attendant Care benefits for minor injuries are fixed at a maximum limit of $3,500.​

Other Optional Benefits – effective next policy renewal on or after June 1st, 2016

The optional benefits available for Medical, Rehabilitation and Attendant Care have also changed:

Benefit/Coverage Current Policy New Policy Clients Can Choose
(Options Available to Clients)
Income Replacement Benefit 70% of gross income up to $400 per week. No change To increase the weekly limit to $600, $800 or $1,000 per week.
Caregiver benefit Available only for catastrophic injuries: Up to $250 per week for the first dependent plus $50 for each additional dependent.
No change
To make the same amounts available in current policy for catastrophic injuries available for all injuries.
Housekeeping and Home Maintenance Expenses Available only for catastrophic injuries: Up to $100 per week. No change To make the same amounts available in current policy for catastrophic injuries available for all injuries.
Death and Funeral Benefits $1,000,000 No change $50,000 lump sum to an eligible spouse; $20,000 lump sum to each dependent; maximum $8,000 funeral benefits
Dependent Care Benefit Not provided Not provided To purchase this benefit and add up to $75 per week for the first dependent and $25 per week for each additional dependent to a maximum of $150 per week.
Indexation benefit Not provided Not provided To add an annual adjustment for inflation for many benefits according to the Consumer
Third Party Liability $200,000 minimum for claims as a result of lawsuits against you. No change Options exist to increase the minimum amount.
Tort Deductible $36,905.40 deductible for court awarded compensation for pain and suffering (Jan. 1st – Dec. 31st, 2016) No change Reduce deductible by $10,000 regardless of annual indexation percentage increases.

The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) has a webpage with details of all changes and you are encouraged to review these details at https://www.fsco.gov.on.ca/en/auto/brochures/Pages/brochure_changes10.aspx.

Rates for coverages depend on a variety of factors, from your driving record to the type of vehicle to the use of your car. And even if your current insurance is still in force, give us your expiry date and we'll call to discuss how you can save with OMA Insurance when it's time to renew.

To learn more about rates and to ensure you and your family are protected with the level of coverage you need, and to get a quote, contact The Personal directly at 1.877.277.7165.

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