Most provinces in Canada have a no-fault insurance regime up to a certain degree.
But each province handles no-fault insurance differently. For example, some provinces allow people to sue for damages, while others, like Quebec, do not.
How does no-fault insurance work in Ontario?
After you report an accident to your insurer in Ontario they’re required to use the fault determination rules set by the provincial government to figure out who caused the accident.
These rules outline more than 40 common accident scenarios, using diagrams to depict almost every possible road collision situation. Each accident scenario has a corresponding liability percentage assigned to each driver.
The insurance company for each party then investigates the circumstances of the accident and determines the degree of fault to be assigned to each driver. This determines which property damage coverages apply. All the insurance companies involved must agree on how fault has been assigned.
If you’re found more than 25% at-fault for the accident, it is more than likely that your premium will go up on renewal.
Ontario’s no-fault system covers damage to vehicles, injuries and even death. In more severe cases including negligence, impaired driving, and drag racing, drivers can sue each other.
How does no-fault insurance work in Quebec?
No-fault insurance in Quebec is unique because the public insurance plan, Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ), only applies to bodily injury. SAAQ compensates anyone injured in a car accident in Quebec whether you’re responsible for the accident or not.
Coverage for property damage, like collision insurance, is purchased through private insurance companies. If you’re at fault, damage to your vehicle will only be covered if your policy includes collision coverage, and you will have to pay the deductible. If you’re not at fault, damage to your vehicle will be covered even if you don’t have collision coverage and you won’t have to pay the deductible.
Under Quebec’s no-fault insurance system, you can never, under any circumstances, sue the at-fault driver responsible for an accident — or their insurance company.
However, at-fault drivers can face charges in the criminal system.
How does no-fault insurance work in Manitoba?
Manitoba operates in a pure no-fault environment. Under this system, Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI), pays for the accident benefit claims of those injured in collisions regardless of who's at fault in the accident.
Mandatory third-party liability coverage protects an insured Manitoba driver in the event that someone is killed, injured or suffers property damage as a result of the driver’s negligence occurring in a collision.
Like Quebec, victims in Manitoba don’t have the right to sue for pain and suffering for financial loss in excess of no-fault benefits provided by MPI.
How does no-fault insurance work in British Columbia?
B.C. operates under a hybrid of the tort and no-fault systems. Under the current insurance system, drivers can take legal action against the at-fault party to recover damages, however, the accident benefits portion of the claim follows the no-fault structure. This means the injured person can receive coverage from their insurance policy (the basic plan required by law), regardless of who's at fault.
As of May 2021 the new system — Enhanced Care Coverage — will see claimants deal directly with the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC).
Drivers will receive compensation, as well as benefits and medical treatment reimbursement, directly from ICBC, cutting lawyers, legal costs and expensive judgements from the system. Like Ontario, certain cases involving dangerous drivers could still end up in court.
How does no-fault insurance work in Saskatchewan?
In Saskatchewan, the default insurance plan provided by Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) includes no-fault personal injury coverage — the Personal Injury Protection Plan (PIPP) — but drivers can opt-out and choose a tort plan instead. The main benefit of switching is that it allows you to sue the at-fault driver involved.
How does no-fault insurance work in New Brunswick?
In New Brunswick, a no-fault system of insurance is in force. This means that no matter who is at fault in an accident, your own insurance company will pay for any medical care or insurable expenses you’ve sustained.
How does no-fault insurance work in Nova Scotia?
Nova Scotia has a no-fault system: drivers deal with their own insurance companies, regardless of who's at fault.
How does no-fault insurance work in Prince Edward Island?
P.E.I. operates under a no-fault system. Drivers deal with their own insurance company regardless of who’s at fault.
How does no-fault insurance work in Alberta?
Alberta operates under a no-fault insurance system. That means your insurer will pay for your damages regardless of who's at fault in an accident.
In Alberta, you can sue for economic losses that exceed the value of your insurance policy’s benefit.
How does no-fault insurance work in Northwest Territories and Nunavut?
The Northwest Territories and Nunavut operate on a hybrid no-fault system. By law, your plan includes third-party liability coverage, but you can still sue an at-fault party for additional compensation in excess of the standard no-fault benefits if your damages warrant such action.