But each province and territory implement different auto insurance systems, which results in varying levels of protection and premium prices for motorists across the nation.
For those living in British Columbia and Manitoba, car insurance is regulated by government-owned organizations, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) and Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI). Auto insurance in Saskatchewan is also run by a Crown corporation, Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI), but motorists can purchase additional coverage through private insurers.
In Québec, the Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ), another public institution, handles minimum limits for bodily injury, while private companies offer third-party liability, property damage, and additional protection. Drivers in the remaining provinces and territories can purchase car policies from private carriers.
Read more: Where can you find the cheapest car insurance rates in Canada?
What does car insurance cover?
Provinces and territories have their own rules and regulations when it comes to mandatory coverage, but there are similarities. These are:
- Third-party liability: This covers the cost of lawsuits if a motorist is responsible for an accident that causes bodily injury, death, or property damage. The minimum amount varies depending on the location but is typically pegged at $200,000.
- Uninsured automobile/motorist: This coverage kicks in if the policyholder or their passenger is injured or killed by an uninsured driver or in a hit-and-run incident. It also covers damages to the vehicle.
- Accident benefits: This pays out for medical treatment and income replacement if the policyholder is injured in an accident, regardless of who is at fault. It also covers funeral expenses should the driver succumb to their injuries.
- Direct compensation property damage (DCPD): Applicable in Ontario, Québec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island, this policy covers damages to the vehicle and its contents resulting from