Tyler Wade, Senior Content Strategist
Car insurance in COVID-19 is changing. Drivers are looking to hold or even cancel their car insurance. Car insurance companies are responding with deferrals and some discounts or rebates, but what if you just want parking insurance – is that an option? Can you park your car on the road without insurance? Well, if you’re looking for a parked car insurance quote, we’ll help you figure out the risks involved and how to get parking insurance.
Can I leave my car without insurance?
Yes, but it’s a mistake. Insurance companies don’t like to see gaps in coverage, which could lead to higher insurance rates in the future. In a worst-case scenario, you may need facility car insurance (insurance for high-risk drivers). If you’re holding on to your car, it’s not worth it to cancel your insurance. Driving without insurance is illegal, and the consequences are severe. If you’re looking for parked car insurance, the answer is to reduce your coverage to comprehensive only.
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What is comprehensive coverage?
Comprehensive car insurance, sometimes referred to as parked car insurance, or fire and theft car insurance protects your car while it’s parked. It ensures your vehicle has coverage if a tree falls on it, falls victim to vandalism, or is stolen. It’s not required by law; however, it’s a common add-on to any standard auto insurance policy across Canada. In Canada, each province regulates its own insurance, so let’s dive a little deeper.
Looking for car insurance?
ICBC parking insurance
BC auto insurance is government-run, but ICBC collision and comprehensive can be purchased separately from a private insurance company as an add-on. Comprehensive insurance with ICBC covers you for theft, vandalism, fire, earthquake, exploding, wild weather, and even hitting a wild animal. It includes windshield repairs without the need to pay a deductible. Deductibles (the portion you pay before ICBC pays the rest) can range between $300 to $2,500 or more. The higher the deductible, the cheaper the cost to you.
ICBC also has exclusive coverage for avehicle in storage, which is like a garage storage insurance policy meant as a sort of seasonal vehicle insurance (think RV). Though they still recommend adding comprehensive protection to your ICBC autoplan.
How does ICBC handle a hit and run claim for a parked car? You have to pay either a $750 deductible or the collision deductible, whichever is less. Try to get the license plate or make and model of the car if you can and call the police immediately.
What does comprehensive insurance cover in Ontario?
According to the financial services regulatory authority of Ontario (FSRAO), comprehensive coverage pays for “losses, other than those covered by collision or upset, including perils or dangers listed under specified perils, falling, or flying objects, missiles and vandalism.”
Specified perils in Ontario include:
- Theft or attempted theft
- Lightning, windstorm or hail
- Rising water
- Earthquake or explosion
- Riot or civil disturbance
- Falling or forced landing of an aircraft or parts of an aircraft
The mandatory Ontario car insurance consists of 4 coverages:
- Third-party liability which protects you in case you injure someone or their property.
- Accident benefits – covers medical costs if you’re injury is originates from a car.
- Direct compensation property damage (DCPD) – collision insurance when you’re not at fault
- Uninsured motorist – when the other vehicle is driven by someone who has no insurance, this is your protection.
As you can see, without comprehensive coverage, there are many ways damage to your vehicle will cost you. And without collision insurance, being in a crash where you’re even partially at fault and the repair bills can add up.
Comprehensive is parking insurance, but don’t take the risk of driving it. It carries severe consequences. Your car should stay parked until your reactivate coverage.
Hit and run for a parked car in Ontario
What if your car is hit in the parking lot – comprehensive or collision? Well, If you’re in a hit and run accident and unable to identify the driver, you’ll use collision insurance to foot the bill. So, if you’re parking on the street, and not a driveway, while you may just want comprehensive coverage, keep collision insurance if you can afford it.
Comprehensive insurance Alberta
Alberta car insurance is similar to Ontario’s private system. It also features third-party liability and accident benefits. If you’re in a collision where the other driver is at fault and doesn’t have insurance, you’ll use the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Program (MVAC). MVAC is also how hit and run insurance claims are handled in Alberta. They also don’t have DCPD and instead,, your insurance company will work with the at-fault driver’s insurance company to sort out the claim, which may take longer.
The comprehensive coverage, though, is the same as Ontario covering all specified periods, including fire, theft, and rising water.
The bottom line
Having an uninsured car on your driveway seems safe, but there are many risks. Instead, get parking insurance, or comprehensive, and protect yourself from threats. Your insurer will be happier, and, hey, maybe you can even ask for a loyalty discount.
- Can you put your car insurance on hold?
- Can you cancel your insurance?
- Car insurance in COVID-19 – How companies are responding