Ontario is one of the Canadian provinces that have a no-fault insurance system in place. There is much confusion surrounding the concept of “no-fault insurance” because the term suggests that in accidents, fault is not assigned to any of the parties. However, this is far from how the system works.
Before the no-fault insurance system was put in place, the respective insurance providers of the parties involved first determine who is the party at fault. Once a decision has been made, the provider of the responsible party will pay out the claims of the injured parties. However, this process was arguably lengthy and costly. It also prevented many claimants from getting prompt medical and rehabilitation help.
In 1989, the no-fault insurance system was finally getting introduced in the province. In this system, your insurance provider answers to your claims, no matter who is the party determined to be at fault for the accident. As you no longer have to wait for the insurance companies involved to decide who the party to be held responsible is, filing your claims and receiving the compensation you are entitled has become a simpler and quicker process, at least in principle.
However, note that a degree of fault will still be assigned to each driver who was involved in the accident. The insurance providers of the parties involved use the Fault Determination Rules set by Ontario’s Insurance Act to assign a percentage (ranging from zero to 100) of fault to each driver. This means that drivers can be wholly or partially at fault in an accident, or have no fault at all.
There are four insurance coverages that the government of Ontario deems as mandatory in a standard insurance package:
In certain situations, you may sue the at-fault driver for compensation for the damages to your vehicle or claim your benefits under other applicable coverages that you have opted into, if any.
The above coverages are mandatory in Ontario and are included in the standard insurance package. Unless you purchased additional coverages, the province’s standard no-fault insurance system will not cover you in the following:
If you have decided not to purchase additional coverages, you might have to pay for certain damages and expenses yourself.
If you had to seek medical help immediately after the accident, collect all the receipts for money you spent out-of-pocket. As soon as you can, contact your insurance provider to begin the accident benefits claim process.
Although everyone who is involved in a car accident may claim compensation from their insurance providers regardless of fault, you may be entitled to additional compensation if you sustained injuries due to the negligence of another person by suing them for:
On the other hand, family members of the seriously injured party (or someone who lost their lives in an accident) may sue the at-fault driver for compensation for:
Family members may also sue for the economic value of services provided to their insured famliy member as well.
If you are involved in a car accident where none of the parties are covered by automobile insurance, you may still claim benefits for the injuries you sustained or compensation for the damages to your vehicle. You are eligible for compensation from the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund if you You were involved in a collision within Ontario, and none of the parties had an applicable insurance coverage
Although the government has the funds in place to financially help uninsured motorists if they are involved in an accident, being an uninsured driver in Ontario has legal consequences. Failing to provide proof of insurance in Ontario can result in a fine of $5,000 (exclusive of tax) and repeat offender may have to spend some time in jail.
In conclusion, Ontario’s no-fault insurance system makes the claim process much quicker because you only have to deal with your provider for compensation of certain benefits but by no means is the process simple or easy.In instances where your coverage is not enough, or if you qualify for pain and suffering compensation, you may have to sue the driver at fault for more compensation.If all parties in the accident are uninsured, the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund may be of assistance.
If you have sustained serious and permanent injuries due to the negligence of another, you may need a personal injury lawyer. Rooz Law Personal Injury Lawyers in North York specializes in cases involving accident benefits, motor vehicle accidents, personal injury, and the like. To make an appointment with us, call (416) 229-6000.
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