We have a cracked windshield that will cost almost $800 to replace. i want to do it through insurance if we can but my wife says making a claim will make our rates go up. That’s right? I’m also a little confused about what exactly we have coverage for – they went through everything very quickly when we bought our insurance. I only know that we pay a small fortune every month. – emily, cook, ont.
If you need a new windshield and want your insurance to help ease your window, your rates shouldn’t be affected, if you have coverage.
“It’s a complete claim and it won’t cause your rates to go up,” says Anne Marie Thomas, senior manager of partner relations for the rate comparison site’s insurance hotline.
But even if your rates don’t increase, there may be limits on the number of windshield claims you can make. if you have too many, say, one every six months, your insurance company might increase your deductible. Or they could refuse to pay more windshield claims, Thomas says.
The problem is that you can only file a claim if you purchased comprehensive coverage that includes glass damage. but what is comprehensive coverage?
There are three types of coverage that are part of an accident policy: liability, collision, and comprehensive, according to thomas. “Liability is mandatory, and the other two are optional: You don’t legally have to have them to drive your car,” she says.
civil liability, collision and comprehensive insurance: what they cover
Liability insurance covers any damage you cause to other people or their property, including your vehicle.
“If you drive through someone’s house and injure them and knock down the side wall of their house, the insurance company will pay,” Thomas says. anything that doesn’t belong to you while driving.”
Also called personal liability and property damage or third party liability coverage.
See also: Earthquake Insurance
It usually includes accident benefit coverage for both you and whoever you hit, Thomas says.
“The insurance company will pay for the rehabilitation,” she says. “although the amounts covered vary by province.”
While insurance rules vary by province, each province requires that you purchase a minimum amount of liability coverage. it is normally $200,000, but it varies. In Nova Scotia, for example, the minimum is $500,000. in Quebec it is $50,000. then you may pay more for additional liability coverage. “It’s not uncommon to have two million,” says Thomas.
The next form of insurance to look out for is collision insurance. covers the cost of repairing your vehicle if it hits something and you are at fault.
Finally, comprehensive insurance covers almost anything other than a collision.
“Comprehensive coverage covers theft, hail, vandalism, and if you get hit by flying objects or animals,” says adam mitchell, an insurance broker based in whitby, ontario. “If a tire bounces off a truck and hits you, it’s integral. if it’s already on the road and you hit it, it’s a collision.”
There is also comprehensive coverage, which is a combination of collision and comprehensive.
A cheaper version of that is specified perils coverage, which only covers damage from specific things, like fire, theft, and lightning.
“It’s full light,” says Thomas. “for example, in alberta, because there’s a lot of hail, they’ll say, ‘we’ll give you comprehensive coverage, but we won’t cover you for hail.’”
In British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, you must purchase liability insurance from each province’s government-run insurance company. For collision and comprehensive, you can buy from the government-run insurance company or a private insurance company.
the escape rate?
Unlike at-fault collision claims, comprehensive claims do not affect your insurance premiums.
then if your windshield cracked from flying gravel, and not from hitting a tree, you would be covered by comprehensive coverage, if you have it. and your rates would stay the same.
but may not be covered. In places that have a lot of gravel and see a lot of windshield claims, like Alberta, companies will often remove windshield coverage from the policy in exchange for a lower rate.
“We see policies that add a special endorsement to remove windshield coverage,” says rob de pruis, director of consumer and industry relations for western canada with insurance bureau of canada.
Since driver assistance systems make windshields increasingly expensive to repair, it’s a good idea to check with your insurance company to see what coverage you have, de pruis says.
and if you have coverage, the replacement probably still won’t be free. to replace a windshield, you’ll generally have to pay the cost of your full deductible.
“If you don’t replace the windshield, there are some policies that allow you to get the chips repaired without paying the deductible,” de pruis adds.
Do you have any important questions? send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Canada is a big place, so let us know where you are so we can find the answer for your city and province.
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