The following are examples of some of the common auto insurance coverages available across Canada. Availability will vary by province, as will the extent of the coverage.

Accident Benefits coverage

Accident Benefits coverage provides for you, your passengers or pedestrians who are injured or killed in an automobile accident. Accident Benefits coverage varies between the participating provinces but in general provides compensation for medical and rehabilitation treatments, funeral expenses, loss of income due to disability and death.

Live in Ontario? See Accident Benefits in Ontario for more information.

Collision coverage

Collision is an optional coverage that if part of your policy protects your vehicle if it is damaged in an accident. Often drivers of older vehicles choose not to purchase Collision coverage because the cost of including it on the policy can be higher than the value of the vehicle itself.

There is usually a deductible.

Comprehensive coverage

Comprehensive coverage, like Collision, is optional. It protects your car against loss or damage resulting from something other than a collision or your policy' exclusions. Comprehensive coverage usually applies in the case of loss or damage from falling or flying objects, theft and vandalism.

What are exclusions? Exclusions usually include, but are not limited to, mechanical fracture or breakdown, rust, corrosion, wear and tear, and freezing.

There is usually a deductible.

Damage to Non-owned Automobiles

If you need to rent a car for a short term, this option provides you with Collision and Comprehensive coverage on the rented car. This type of insurance can get expensive if you purchase it from a rental car company.

Before you sign up for this coverage, take a moment to check with your rental car company and your credit card company. You may already have this coverage elsewhere.

Direct Compensation- Property Damage

In Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick, Direct Compensation - Property Damage coverage provides for damage to your car and any of your property inside the car, because of an automobile accident where you are not-at-fault or partially not-at-fault.

Family Protection

Family Protection coverage provides coverage for you and your family from the actions of an at-fault, uninsured or underinsured driver. If available in your province, Family Protection coverage ensures that you and your family are covered if you are injured in an accident up to your own policy's limits regardless of the other person's coverage levels.

Limited Waiver of Depreciation

If you have a brand new car, still within the first 24 months of the original delivery date, this optional coverage ensures you will receive the full value of what you paid for the car -- without depreciation if it is written-off. If your car can be safely repaired, your insurance company will arrange for necessary repairs.

Loss of Use coverage

Say you're involved in an accident and your car is damaged. Your Loss of Use coverage pays for a rental car or alternate transportation (like taxi or train fares) while your automobile is being repaired. Loss of Use coverage is optional.

Third-party Liability Coverage

Third-party liability (known as Civil Liability in Quebec) covers you if you are held legally liable if your vehicle injures someone else or damages his or her property. If you are held liable for more than your coverage, you can be held personally responsible for the balance. Third-party liability coverage is compulsory in all provinces and territories in Canada, although the minimum amount of coverage needed may vary by province.

Uninsured, Underinsured or Unidentified Motorist coverage

This coverage is universal across Canada. While it may be called something different, or split into two or more coverage types the principles are the same. Uninsured, underinsured or unidentified motorist coverage provides payment (the amounts vary among the provinces) if you are injured or killed through the fault of an uninsured/underinsure driver, or by an unidentified vehicle like in a hit-and-run.

Auto insurance quickguides

The information contained within this article is subject to change. Always speak with your current insurance supplier, or a licensed insurance representative, to answer your specific questions. The information collected and compiled here is intended to simply act as a guide.

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