If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident in Ontario, you have the benefit of our no-fault insurance laws to cover you with accident benefits. But what happens if the other driver is at fault? And worse yet, what happens if that other driver is not insured?
Having No Insurance is a Serious Offense
In Ontario, it is mandatory to have car insurance. And yet thousands of drivers take the risk of driving without insurance in our province. In fact, it’s been estimated that more than 2,000 uninsured drivers are involved in accidents each year in our province. Driving without insurance in Ontario is a serious offense. Although an uninsured driver may not be arrested, there are considerable fines and penalties.
No-Fault Insurance Laws
Because we are a no-fault province, in the case of injuries sustained in an accident, your own insurance is the first to pay benefits. But in the instance where there is designated fault, your insurance would then go to the at-fault party’s insurance to get reimbursed. In the case where the other party has no insurance, your insurance company has no recourse to get reimbursed. This can be detrimental to you if your premiums go up as a result.
Your Insurance Covers Uninsured Parties
In Ontario, all automobile policies must include coverage for damages by both insured and uninsured motorists. This means you will be covered even if the other party is uninsured. But the maximum that can be paid for a claim for damages is $200,000. In many cases, this will not be sufficient, In the case where the other driver is at fault and doesn’t have insurance, a Sault Ste. Marie personal injury lawyer can take them to court in order to pursue further compensation for your injuries.
Ontario’s Motor Vehicle Claims Fund
In the instance where neither party is insured, accident victims still have access to coverage through Ontario’s Motor Vehicle Claims Fund. This will compensate any victims of uninsured drivers up to a maximum of $200,000 including property damage. This is only available to residents of Ontario for an incident that occurs here and is meant to be a last option approach.
We All Pay
Unfortunately, we all ultimately pay the cost of uninsured motorists by way of high insurance premiums. Not only do we pay as individuals but our government has paid nearly $250 million to cover damages caused by uninsured drivers. Many Sault Ste. Marie personal injury lawyers feel that the problem of uninsured drivers could be affected by better policing and databases with insurance information readily available at traffic stops.
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident by an uninsured driver, contact our expert Sault Ste. Marie injury lawyers at AB Personal Injury Lawyer. We will discuss your legal rights during a free consultation and protect your rights to fair compensation under the law.