In Ontario, car insurance is known as “no-fault insurance.” No doubt this term can be misleading to consumers, but it does not mean that no one is held accountable for an accident. Simply put, no-fault insurance means that you only deal with your own insurance company when you need to make a claim. Despite who is at-fault in the accident, each party deals with their own insurance company respectively.
The benefit of no-fault insurance is that you can settle a claim quicker, while having access to any benefits available to you. That certainly beats chasing down the other driver’s insurance company for compensation. Another benefit is that you do not have to wait for the insurance companies to determine who was at fault in the accident before receiving reparation. This helps to put you back to the state you were in before the accident.
Determining who was at fault in a collision is up to the insurance companies. Someone is always deemed to be at fault, and the insurance companies are the ones who conclude what percentage each party is responsible for the collision. Insurance companies use fault determination rules to determine who was at fault. The rules cover 40+ collision examples and can generally be applied to almost every car accident scenario. Fault is determined on a percentage basis, and any driver that has any percentage of fault will be rated as having an at fault claim by insurance companies.
If you are found at fault for any of the accident, you may notice an increase to your policy premium at renewal time. Most companies have an “accident forgiveness” program in place, which keeps your driving record in place even after your first at-fault accident. If you don’t know if your policy carries this benefit, make sure you call Mitchell & Whale to discuss your coverage. Don’t wait until it is too late to find out if you have this coverage in place.