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Matt Hands, VP, Insurance and MoneySense
Nova Scotia auto insurance is a requirement for all drivers, much like the rest of Canada, but there are some provincial differences in coverage requirements.
To begin, Nova Scotia operates in a no-fault insurance system. No-fault means you deal with your own insurance company for claims, not that you can't be found at fault.
Nova Scotia auto insurance is provided by private insurance carriers and is regulated by Nova Scotia's Office of the Superintendent of Insurance. They ensure complaints against insurers are dealt with.
Available coverage is broken down into two categories - mandatory and optional.
Mandatory Nova Scotia auto insurance coverage includes (full descriptions below)
- Third-party liability
- Accident benefits
- Uninsured automobile insurance
- Direct Compensation Property Damage (DCPD)
Optional Nova Scotia car insurance coverage include (full descriptions below)
- Collision insurance
- Comprehensive car insurance
- Specified perils
- All perils
There are also Standard Endorsement Forms (SEF) which are available as add-ons to your existing coverage through your insurer. Here are 3 common Nova Scotia endorsements that can help save you money.
- SEF 13C - waives the driver's right to claim glass breakage
- SEF 19 - Insures your car for its actual cash value (including depreciation), not its replacement cost
- SEF 40 - Charges a deductible if your car catches fire or is stolen.
Any car insurance rate increases in Nova Scotia requires approval from the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board (NSUARB).
NSUARB ensures all Nova Scotia drivers’ auto insurance rates are fair and reasonable. Even though drivers in Nova Scotia pay some of the lowest car insurance rates in Canada, it still makes sense to compare car insurance quotes to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
Informed consumers help to keep rates competitive and as a citizen of Nova Scotia, the government encourages you to compare, consult, and select your coverage by getting auto insurance quotes from multiple providers. Competition often leads to both better rates and service from auto insurers.
Reforms in car insurance have led to Nova Scotia’s “First Chance Discount”, offering new drivers’ credit for three years of driving experience and increasing to six if the new driver successfully completed a driver education course. This action alone led to significant reductions in car insurance premiums.
Direct Compensation Property Damage (DCPD)
Emergency roadside assistance
Are you getting the best price for Nova Scotia auto insurance?
In less than five minutes, you can compare multiple car insurance quotes from Nova Scotia's top providers, for free.
How to get cheap car insurance in Nova Scotia
Shop and compare
Research which company provides cheap car insurance in Nova Scotia, and also the best value for you and your vehicle. Rates may change up to four times a year, but lucky for you comparing car insurance quotes with us is free.
Stay with your current insurer
Some Nova Scotia car 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.
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 a large corporation, union, or a school alumnus, it could help you get cheaper Nova Scotia 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 3-5% simply by adding winter tires to your car.
The price you pay for car insurance can differ greatly depending on the company you choose. By providing us with a few details, we’ll be able to calculate a customized quote and connect you with a top car insurance company in Nova Scotia, such as CAA Insurance. The table below outlines the lowest, highest, and average rate offered using Ratehub’s car insurance calculator.
Lowest Nova Scotia car insurance rate
Highest Nova Scotia car insurance rate
Average Nova Scotia car insurance rate
Nova Scotia uses a graduated license program (GLP). This system requires each driver to progress through a 3-step educational program in order to be considered a fully licensed driver. Once you’ve successfully completed the program, you can legally operate a car as a class 5 driver throughout the province of Nova Scotia and the rest of Canada. To drive a commercial truck, bus, ambulance, or taxi requires a different license class.
Let’s take a quick look at graduated license program approach:
Class 7 learner's licence (or level one) eligibility criteria:
Class 7 learner's licence (or level two) eligibility criteria:
Class 5 regular licence (or full license) eligibility criteria:
Ready to get a free Nova Scotia car insurance quote today?
By comparing quotes from Canada's top insurance companies to find your best rate can potentially save you hundreds of dollars annually.
Recent auto insurance news in Nova Scotia
Following a record-high $1 billion in auto theft payouts in 2022, many insurers are taking matters into their own hands to combat stolen vehicle losses.
A recent article from Canadian Underwriter revealed that Definity (the fourth largest auto insurance market in Nova Scotia) has introduced a new variable when it comes to calculating a driver's premium: High Theft Rate rating. With this, the insurer has identified 13 vehicle makes and models that are highly stolen, facing a high frequency of claims – and the premiums on these specific vehicles will be increased in Nova Scotia.
While the vehicles aren't named specifically, the top five stolen cars in Canada (based on data from Equité Association) are the 2016-21 Honda CR-V, 2016-21 Lexus RX series, 2015-20 Ford F-150 series, 2016-21 Honda Civic, and the 2013-19 Toyota Highlander series.
Other auto insurance companies may be taking different approaches to combating the cost of auto theft. For instance, some are offering free installation for anti-theft devices while others are applying fees to those who don't.
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Matt Hands, Business Director of Insurance
With 6+ years of experience at Ratehub.ca, Matt’s focus has been on growing its newest business unit, Insurance. He is a thought leader and a valuable resource to respected publications across Canada. read full bio
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