Ontario’s standard automobile insurance policy underwent significant changes effective September 1, 2010. The upshot of these changes is that most drivers are now paying the same premium for significantly less benefits in the event of a collision. However, what many people do not know is that upgraded benefits are available at very little additional cost.
For example, your auto insurer is only required to pay expenses for medical treatment and therapies to a total of $50,000 under the new standard policy. For a reasonably small premium, you can increase this limit to either $100,000 or $1,100,000. In the event of a serious injury, the current benefit level is likely to be insufficient for your needs. Therapies can be expensive and only a very small amount are usually covered by your workplace medical benefits.
Income replacement benefits are now calculated at 70% of gross income, to a maximum of $400 per week. If you are a high wage earner, work a lot of overtime, or are not covered by long-term disability insurance, $400 per week will not go very far to cover your lost wages. Optional benefits can be purchased to increase this coverage to $600, $800 or $1,000 per week.
Unfortunately, housekeeping assistance has been completely eliminated under the new standard policy. A return to the previous coverage level of $100 per week is available for a small additional premium.
The bottom line is that additional coverage is inexpensive to purchase, and can be priceless in the event you need to rely on it after a collision. Contact your insurance company or broker for pricing and further details.