What are Accident Benefits?

They are benefits that you and/or your dependant might receive if injured in a motor vehicle accident. These benefits have been defined by the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule (SABS). Although most of these benefits are standard and included within your policy, you may elect to purchase additional coverage from your insurance company.

What types of benefits can you receive?

–          Income Replacement Benefits

–          Non-Earner Benefits

–          Caregiver Benefits

–          Medical and Rehabilitation Benefits

–          Attendant Care Benefits

–          Other Expenses Benefits

–          Death and Funeral Payment Benefits

How and When to Apply?

You must inform your insurance company within 7 days of the accident.  They will send you the proper forms, and you will need to complete them and send them back within 30 days.

Can you be disqualified from receiving Accident Benefits?

Yes, if you were breaking the law during the accident.  For example:

–          Driving without a valid license

–          Driving a vehicle without the permission of the owner

–          Riding as a passenger in a vehicle you knew, or should have known, the driver did not have permission to drive

–          Not having a valid or up to date insurance policy

–          Driving under the influence.

How can you navigate your way through Accident Benefits?

Hire a licenced paralegal to help you through the process.  As of May 1st 2008, licensed paralegals can represent you at FSCO (Financial Services Commission of Ontario).  It is always prudent to hire a legal professional to review your rights with you before you commit to a settlement that benefits the insurance company.  Your paralegal can help you navigate the system and will negotiate on your behalf with the insurance companies.  They may recognize other benefits that you or your insurance company may have missed.

Paralegals are licensed under the Law Society of Upper Canada.  As such, they have a fiduciary duty to protect your rights.

 

This article is a summary of the IBC, Accident Benefit Coverage in Ontario.

Ali Golabgir is a Paralegal student at Centennial College in Toronto studying professional communications with Omar Ha-Redeye.

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