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Auto Insurance Glossary

We've compiled a glossary of common insurance terms to help you better understand your insurance coverage. If you have any questions, please contact us.

 

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Accident Benefits (also known as Statutory Accident Benefits)

  • You may receive accident benefits if you or a family member is injured or killed in a car accident
  • Includes coverage for:
    • Income replacement
    • Caregiver and dependant care
    • Medical, rehabilitation and attendant care
    • Death and funeral
    • Indexation benefit (ensures annual increases to monetary limits to reflect changes in cost of living)
  • Paid regardless of who is at fault in an accident
  • Certain limitations apply, for example, if someone is driving without insurance
  • OTIP offers the option to increase your coverage for accident benefits

All Perils

  • Combines both Collision or Upset and Comprehensive coverages
  • Provides additional coverage for loss or damage caused to your car if your car is stolen by a person who lives in your home or is employed by you

At-Fault

See Chargeable Loss

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Broker

An insurance broker shops your insurance needs with the different insurance companies they have contracts with to ensure you are getting the best value.

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Chargeable Loss

If you are involved in a car accident and your car is damaged, your insurance company is required, by law, to assign the percentage of fault for each of the drivers involved in the accident. This is done by using the Fault Determination Rules which are set out in a regulation under the Insurance Act. The rules help insurance companies deal with accident claims quickly and economically.

Collision or Upset Coverage

This coverage protects you against loss or damage to your insured vehicle when it is involved in a collision with another object, including another car or object, or rolls over.

Comprehensive Coverage

This coverage pays for losses, other than those covered by Collision or Upset, including perils listed under Specified Perils, falling or flying objects, missiles and vandalism.

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Deductible

  • Amount you are required to pay for a claim you have chosen coverage for
  • Example: if vandals cause $1,000 worth of damage to your car and you have a $300 deductible on your comprehensive coverage, then your insurance company will only pay for damages over the $300, (i.e., $700). You will be responsible for the first $300
  • Higher deductibles are an option to decrease premiums; lower deductibles may not always be able available

Direct Compensation-Property Damage (DC-PD)

  • Covers you if another car causes damage to your car and/or its contents
  • Called direct compensation because even though someone else causes the damage, you collect directly from your own insurer
  • If you're not responsible for the accident, you may claim under the DC-PD portion of your policy

Driving Convictions

  • Any offence under the Highway Traffic Act or the Criminal Code of Canada
  • Include but are not limited to, careless driving, criminal negligence, impaired driving, speeding, not wearing a seatbelt, following too closely, and improper passing
  • One or more driving convictions may adversely affect your insurance premiums

Driving Record

  • Your driving history, which includes any accidents or driving convictions, the number of years licensed, and license suspensions
  • The better your driving record, the lower your rates!

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Endorsement

  • A written agreement attached to your insurance policy which adds or deletes coverage
  • It takes precedence over the provisions in your original policy
  • OTIP offers optional endorsements for auto and property insurance

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Facility Association

  • An insurance pool that all car insurance companies belong to
  • Insurer of last resort and ensures that car insurance is made available to high-risk drivers who might otherwise find it difficult to buy car insurance
  • Certain insurance companies have been designated to service Facility Association policies
  • These companies are known as "servicing carriers"

Fault Determination Rules

  • Used to determine fault in an accident
  • The rules are set out in the regulations under the Insurance Act
  • Help insurance companies deal with accident claims fairly, quickly and economically

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Ownership

  • Ontario Automobile Policy (OAP #1) covers cars owned by individuals or a husband and wife residing in the same household
  • Coverage for cars owned by businesses or groups of people is excluded

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Premium

  • Amount of money you pay to insure your vehicle
  • OTIP offers a monthly payment plan with no service fee as well as our two, three and four payment methods

Private Passenger Automobile

  • Vehicles operated by an individual or a family for personal use
  • Vehicles used for commercial purposes, such as a taxi or delivery service, are not covered

Property Damage

  • Damage to the property of others (fence, telephone post), including loss of use caused by your car or another person's car driven by you or a family member

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Specified Perils

  • Pays for losses caused by one of the following: fire, theft or attempted theft, lightning, windstorm, hail or rising water, earthquake, explosion, riot or civil disturbance, falling or forced landing of aircraft or parts of aircraft, or the stranding, sinking, burning, derailment or collision of any kind of transport in or upon which an insured car is being carried on land or water

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Underwriting

  • Process of reviewing, accepting or rejecting insurance risks
  • Accepted risks are categorized so the appropriate premium can be charged

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VIN (Vehicle Identification Number)

  • Generally, a 17-character identifier made up of numbers and letters
  • Uniquely identifies characteristics of a vehicle such as year, make, model and engine specifics
  • Usually located on the driver's side of the dashboard
  • Also known as a Serial Number

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