British Columbia Auto Insurance
The car insurance in British Columbia is provided by a government based insurance company and has harsh rules.
You have to have the basic insurance coverage that meets the minimum requirements or more. If you miss a payment your insurance could be cancelled with no word. However, the insurer has to give a thirty day notice of renewal before it expires. People have had little choice since the 70’s of how and where they buy their car insurance. In British Columbia unlike other provinces drivers can just switch insurance companies.
Driver can purchase collision, fire and theft insurance form private car insurance companies that are in competition.
These companies make it easier for people to have a choice where the government gives none. However, new mandates have made it easier for BC drivers to get the choice of how and from whom they buy their British Columbia auto insurance. In British Columbia:
-The system is a no fault insurance where there is no right to sue for injury, pain, suffering, medical or economic expenses or property damages. You simply get a standard, pre-established set of benefits. If you need more support after the settlement you can’t sue for any more money.
In B.C. the government will cover you for up to $200,000 in court for a legal settlement. If it is more your insurance company pays no more than $20,000 towards the property damage.
You must carry your driver’s license in B.C. and your proof of insurance that is not expired in your car at all times.
If it is suspended or expired the vehicle could get towed or taken by police and put into a car lot. If you get into an accident without a seat belt which if mandatory your insurance could null and you would be held responsible for all damages.
British Columbia auto Insurance has actually dropped since 2009 due to less accident claims. The basic rates will stay the same but optional rates like vandalism and comprehensive will drop three percent. The average driver can expect to save at least $16 a year. At least in British Columbia people are driving more safely! Actually, British Columbia Auto Insurance is one of the cheapest as far as the premiums. The other two are Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The average auto insurance premium in B.C. is close to $1400 a year. In cities like Victoria it is even cheaper at $945 a year. You can drive in B.C. with a valid license from another area for six months. An international driver’s license is not needed.
If you find that the basic coverage from the Insurance Corporation is not enough you may choose to go out of province to look for third party companies that can give you theft, fire and more collision coverage. You can always look online for companies and quotes in making your final decision. Having coverage is very important and it is relatively cheap in B.C. compared to other provinces so take advantage of that fact and get yourself and your family covered.
Andrei Zakhareuski is the founder of Find-a-driving-school.ca. He has been writing for beginner Canadian drivers for several years.
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