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How car insurance coverage works in Northwest Territories

In the Northwest Territories car insurance is mandatory and provided by private insurance companies and brokers. The Office of the Superintendent of Insurance supervises, regulates and enforces the insurance across the territory. There are minimum standards for mandatory coverage that includes $200,000 in third-party liability insurance, which protects drivers in the event they cause injury or death to a third party. Medical payments, funeral expense benefits, disability income benefits, and death benefits are some of the other minimum mandatory coverages. Beyond the minimum you can customize your policy with optional coverage additions, such as collision and comprehensive. It’s recommended you speak to an insurer about additional coverage options.

Here is an overview of the available car insurance coverages in Northwest Territories:

Coverage Description
Public Insurance

Basic auto insurance coverage provided by the Provincial government. This generally includes liability, accident benefits and uninsured motorist coverage.

Available: No
Required: No

Private Insurance

Auto insurance policies created & sold by private insurance carriers. Though these carriers must still abide by Federal and Provincial regulations.

Available: Yes
Required: Yes

No-fault insurance

Having no-fault insurance doesn’t mean you can’t be found at fault. This coverage means you must first deal with your own insurance company for all claims, whether you’re at fault or not. But, Northwest Territories will allow a no-fault driver to sue an at-fault driver for additional damages and costs that are not covered by their accident benefits.

Available: Yes
Required: Yes

Third-party Liability Insurance

Protects against damage caused by you while driving and includes injury and death to others and property damage. This is the only insurance coverage that is mandatory across Canada. Minimum coverage for Northwest Territories is $200,000.

Available: Yes
Required: Yes

Accident Benefits

Covers your medical benefits if you’re injured in a crash, whether you’re at fault or not. The coverage includes your medical costs, while also paying for additional recovery costs, such as rehab, income replacement, and payment for and attendant care, if needed.

Available: Yes
Required: Yes

Direct Compensation-Property Damage (DCPD)

Covers damage to your vehicle and its contents, and for the loss of use of your vehicle when damaged – if another person was at fault. This coverage only applies if the crash occurs in a province where DCPD is mandatory, if two or more insured vehicles are involved, and if both insurers are licensed within that DCPD province.

Available: No
Required: No

Uninsured Motorist

Uninsured motorist coverage protects against injuries you and your family members sustain in a crash caused by an uninsured motorist. It can also cover your vehicle damages, if the uninsured driver is able to be identified.

Available: Yes
Required: Yes

Collision Insurance

Protects against damages sustained in a collision. This insurance covers you if your car is damaged in a crash – in both cases whether you crash into another other car or whether you crash into a stationary object.

Available: Yes
Required: No

Comprehensive Insurance

Protects against any losses a car owner may suffer, from events not related to driving. Such losses could include theft or damage from attempted theft; vandalism; environmental damage to a car from floods, fallen trees, and hail, etc.

Available: Yes
Required: No

Specified Perils

Covers your financial losses for damage caused specific perils – but only for perils chosen specifically for your policy. Available coverages are for theft; fire; damage from hail, lightning, wind, or flooding; earthquakes; explosions; riots; aircraft crash damage; and damage sustained during any transportation relocation.

Available: Yes
Required: No

All Perils

This combines the coverages you get with collision and comprehensive insurance. Additionally, all-perils also covers you if an employee, or someone who drives or services your car, steals it. It also covers you if someone you live with steals your vehicle.

Available: Yes
Required: No

Emergency roadside assistance

This service covers you for roadside callouts for emergencies such as dead batteries, towing, flat tires, keys locked in your car, empty gas tank, etcetera. Many insurance companies offer roadside assistance either included or in addition to other coverages.

Available: Yes
Required: No

*Table information sourced from (2017)

Historical Northwest Territories auto insurance rates

Drivers in Northwest Territories currently pay around the national average for car insurance in Canada at just less than $1,000. Due to the territory’s recent rising auto insurance costs, it is imperative to compare car insurance quotes to ensure you’re getting the best policy to suit your needs. In fact, citizens of Northwest Territories are encouraged to compare rates and consult with industry experts before finalizing their car insurance policy. Informed consumers help to create a more competitive market, which often leads to both better rates and service from car insurance providers.

Factors that impact your Northwest Territories car insurance rates

To find the best car insurance rate in Northwest Territories, it pays to shop around. Even though insurance applications are fairly standard, you’ll find that insurance rates can differ between providers. Every insurance company determines their own rates based on who they presently insure, how many active claims are on their current financial accounts, and the company’s overall tolerance for risk. There are several other elements you can’t control that negatively affect rates. For instance, age statistics such as the frequency of claims for drivers are used in risk calculations. This has historically led to older, more experienced drivers are rewarded with cheaper premiums. The average premium in any given area is the result of the amount and cost of all claims. If you live in a densely populated area, you’ll end up paying more.

Here are 7 factors that determine your car insurance premium.

How to get cheap car insurance in Northwest Territories?

Shop and compare

At, we generate car insurance quotes using our car insurance rate calculator, which pulls in quotes from Canada’s top providers. It’s important to research which car insurance company provides the coverage you want for your budget. In Northwest Territories, rates change often, but lucky for you shopping for rates with us is free.

Stay with your current insurer

Some auto insurance companies will give loyalty discounts to drivers who remain active with them for years. Especially if they add family members or multiple vehicles to their policy.

Bundle Your Policies

If you use the same insurance company for both your home and auto insurance needs, your insurer will often thank you with a dip in premiums.

Get a multi car discount

If you have multiple drivers and vehicles in the same household, by putting them all on one policy can save you money.

Research your vehicle

The model of car you drive, its safety rating, its price, the amount of times it gets stolen – all affect your automobile premium. Research which automobiles have a low occurrence of theft to save on auto insurance. NWT operates using the Canadian Loss Experience Automobile Rating (CLEAR) system. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada it is an accurate and credible resource for claims on any particular passenger vehicle. You can use it to find your car and better understand your premium.

Increase your deductible

Your deductible is the portion you pay when settling a claim before your insurer will pay the rest. If you’re willing to double your deductible, it could save you money.

Ask about discounts

If you’re a member of CAA-Alberta Motor Association (which covers Northwest Territories), a large corporation, union, or a member of your school alumni, you could get cheaper car insurance

Pay premiums annually, instead of monthly

Paying monthly adds administrative costs to your insurer, so if you’re able to pay in full annually you can lower your premiums.

Maintain a good driving record

If you’re a safe driver, obey the rules of the road and drive according to road conditions you can reduce your chances of an accident. Car crashes stay on your insurance record for up to ten years and can result in higher premiums.

Install winter tires

You can save up to 5% simply by adding winter tires to your car. With winter driving conditions being so treacherous throughout Northwest Territories it pays to be safe!

Keep track of your driving

You can even install a telematics device to collect driving data. With user-based insurance (UBI) you can earn discounts based on not driving far or often, and on advanced stats like how carefully you brake and accelerate.

Take a course

If you’re new to driving, a driver’s education course will save money. Your car insurance provider will think of you as a safer driver if you’ve been trained by professionals.

How to get an Northwest Territories driver's licence

Once you’ve hit age 15, you can apply for a learner’s license in the Northwest Territories. To earn a full license, you must complete a three-stage program.

Learner's licence Class 7/Stage 1 license phase (or level one) eligibility criteria:

  • You need to be at least 15 years of age

  • Pass a written test

  • Pass a vision test

  • Pay the associated test fees

Class 5P or Stage 2 licence (or level two) eligibility criteria:

  • Must stay in Stage 1 for 12 months

  • Must remain suspension free

  • Must be 16 years old

  • Book and pass a road test

  • Pay an administrative fee for the road test

Full Class 5 or Stage 3 licence (or level three) eligibility criteria:

  • Hold stage 2 license for 12 months

  • Have no suspensions

Frequently Asked Questions about Northwest Territories auto insurance

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