Many Ontario drivers face high auto insurance premiums that seem to increase every year, even without accidents. It is no surprise that one of the first questions many of our clients ask is:
If I start an accident benefits or tort claim, will this just be an excuse for my insurance company to raise my premiums?
The short answer is no.
After you have been injured in an accident, the last thing you want to be worrying about is a huge increase in premiums that you cannot afford.
Thankfully, you do not have to choose between the claims you are entitled to and increased insurance premiums or being denied coverage at the same rates. After all, this is why we purchase insurance, so that there is a safety net there when you are really hurt!
Insurance companies cannot raise your premiums based on you initiating an accident benefits or tort claim. According to the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO), which regulates insurance companies in Ontario, if you are not at-fault (or are less than 25% at-fault for an accident) the insurance company cannot raise your premiums or deny you coverage based on a motor vehicle accident. Click here to read more.
If you are injured and not at-fault (or less than 25% liable) your claim for accident benefits, or for damages based on your pain and suffering under tort law, makes you no more or less likely to cause an accident in the future. Part of FSCO’s job is to ensure that insurance premium calculations are based on your risk of causing a future accident. Simply relying on the premiums you pay for benefits you are entitled to does not make you a riskier driver.
The Other Hidden Costs of an Accident
While your insurance premiums cannot go up when you are not at fault for an accident, a lot of other bills do add up quickly. There is the time you take off from work due to your injuries or medical appointments, transportation costs to get to those appointments, help with housekeeping or childcare, prescription drugs, physiotherapy and more. It is important for you to find out what your options are for covering these expenses. Call us today to book a free consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers in Ottawa at Howard Yegendorf & Associates.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident and you have questions about whether you are at-fault, what kind of claim you may be entitled to and how a claim might affect your insurance premiums, contact us today so that we can arrange a free consultation with one of our experienced professionals.