In Canada – where there are almost 40 million registered vehicles, according to the latest figures from Statistics Canada (StatCan) – drivers are legally bound to take out auto coverage. But with motorists swamped with options from various providers, finding the right policies that can fit their varying needs becomes a tall order.
Choosing cheaper coverage can often be tempting. However, drivers risk losing more, especially if the protection such policies offer is insufficient. To get the most out of car insurance, Canadian motorists need to understand the choices available to them and the level of coverage the different types of policies provide.
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How does car insurance work in Canada?
To operate a vehicle, drivers in the country must carry auto insurance. It is required by the law in all provinces and territories. Getting caught driving without one can result in hefty fines and may affect future eligibility for obtaining coverage.
But each province and territory implement different car insurance systems, which result in varying levels of protection and rates.
For those living in British Columbia and Manitoba, auto insurance is regulated by government-owned organizations, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) and Manitoba Public Insurance. Car 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.
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What does car insurance cover in Canada?
Provinces and territories also