Alberta has adopted a Direct Compensation for Property Damage (DCPD) system, effective January 1, 2022. This system, also called no-fault insurance, is designed to simplify auto insurance claims following a collision. This system is already in place in almost every province in Canada (Check out this blog post on no-fault insurance in Ontario.).
What does DCPD mean for your auto insurance policy?
DCPD does not change your automobile coverage and you don’t need to take any action. DCPD affects who pays for the damage in a no-fault auto accident. Rather than dealing with someone else’s insurance company when you are not at-fault, you simply contact your own insurance company to start the claims process. This is a more customer-focused approach to insurance claims and vehicle repairs.
Depending on the policy you have, your insurance company may also cover costs like medical bills and legal fees.
How do insurance companies determine who’s at fault?
Insurance companies have claims experts who are experienced in determining fault in an accident. These experts must also follow a set of rules and regulations as outlined by law. All of this information combined with the use of police and weather reports, witness statements, impact points and more, helps them determine who is at fault in an accident.
It’s possible for both drivers to be deemed at-fault in a vehicle accident, for example, in a parking-lot collision, both drivers can share the fault. If you are found to be at-fault, you may see your insurance rates increase.
What are the benefits of DCPD?
Simplicity: The DCPD system is designed to offer an easier process for auto policy holders. Just contact your own insurance provider if you’re in a no-fault accident and they’ll help you take care of everything.
Working with a company you trust: There is no need to contact someone else’s insurance company for compensation. When you’re in a collision, you are working with someone on your side, who is focused on your specific case.
Faster compensation: Working with your insurance provider can also lead to quicker compensation. You no longer have to wait for other insurance companies or the courts to determine who is at fault.
Possible reduced premium: For most drivers, DCPD will either reduce your premium(s) or there will be no change. If you’d like to learn more about DCPD, visit the Insurance Bureau of Canada.
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FAQs about Direct Compensation for Property Damage in Alberta
Will my premium go up if I claim a no-fault accident in Alberta?
If you’re not at fault, your insurance premium will not increase as a result of your accident. If you are at fault for an accident, your insurance rates may increase. You can ask your insurance advisor about adding Accident Forgiveness coverage to your policy, which can save you from increased rates on an at-fault accident.
Will I have to pay a deductible if I’m in a no-fault accident in Alberta?
If you’re not at-fault, you will not have to pay a deductible. Your auto insurance will pay for damage to your vehicle.
Who will I receive payment from if I submit a claim for a no-fault accident in Alberta?
Your insurance company will compensate you if you have the right coverage in place. Contact your insurance advisor to ensure you have the right coverage for your needs.
Should I purchase Accident Forgiveness coverage?
Everyone makes mistakes and there is coverage available to help before this happens. If you are involved your first at-fault accident, having accident forgiveness coverage can prevent your rates from increasing as a result. In addition, you will maintain your good driving record, as long as you stay with the same company – it’s a win-win.