Required car insurance protection in Chestermere, Alberta
There are so many types of auto insurance on the market today, it can be hard to know which ones are right for you. Since car insurance is mandatory in Alberta, there are a few types that you must have if you want to drive in the province. We outline these four types first before diving into some optional coverages that are available to you:
Third party liability coverage
Liability insurance covers you if you get into a car accident that you cause. In this type of situation, if you accidentally hit someone, your third party liability coverage can help pay for the associated costs. Types of expenses third party liability insurance might cover include legal fees, medical bills, and vehicle repair bills.
Accident benefits coverage
Accident benefits coverage can reimburse policyholders for medical expenses if someone is injured in a car accident and requires medical attention. Specifically, accident benefits will pay for fees not covered by private Alberta health insurance plans, such as prescription drugs, rehabilitation or therapy. Further, accident benefits can cover medical fees incurred by the policyholder or someone else involved in the accident, like another driver or passenger.
Direct compensation - property damage coverage
Direct compensation - property damage coverage offers financial protection to drivers if they get into an accident that damages their car. Whether your car is dented, scratched, or totalled, direct compensation - property damage coverage can help you pay for the cost of repairs. The only catch is that you must not have been responsible for the collision in order to claim direct compensation coverage.
Uninsured motorist coverage
Uninsured motorist coverage is the final type of mandatory auto insurance coverage in Chestermere and it deals with collisions with certain types of drivers. If you get into an accident with any of the following types of drivers, you might be covered by the uninsured motorist coverage portion of your Chestermere car insurance policy:
- Uninsured drivers: someone who does not have a valid car insurance policy.
- Underinsured drivers: someone who does not have enough car insurance coverage to pay for the cost of the damage.
- Unidentified drivers: someone who flees the scene of the accident and thus the policyholder never learns their identity, such as in the case of a hit and run.
Extra car insurance protection in Chestermere, Alberta
Mandatory coverage in Alberta is the most basic form of car insurance in the province. Thus, many drivers in Chestermere choose to add extra protection to their policies in the form of optional coverage. Optional coverage safeguards policyholders against a wider range of risks, providing them with greater peace of mind on the road. Learn more about four types of optional car insurance below:
Collision car coverage offers additional protection if your car is damaged in a collision. Policyholders can claim collision car coverage whether they caused the accident or not. It even applies if you get into an accident with a pedestrian or an object on the road, not just another vehicle.
Comprehensive car coverage protects your parked car from property damage. More specifically, it will protect your car from damage caused by a set of perils listed in your policy. These perils include but are not limited to, fire, theft, vandalism, glass damage and collision with an animal. These perils can happen whether you are on the road or parked, hence why it is considered “parked car coverage”.
Accident forgiveness coverage
One more type of optional car insurance coverage popular among drivers in Chestermere is accident forgiveness. Accident forgiveness is additional coverage that can be added to your car insurance policy as an endorsement, to protect your driving record and to help prevent your insurance premium from increasing if you have an at-fault accident claim. While this does not mean your premiums will stay the same year after year, it means that the first at fault accident will not be a factor for a rate increase. Note: coverage and eligibility varies by province.
Loss of use coverage
Loss of use coverage is one final type of optional coverage that many Chestermere drivers choose to add to their policies. Loss of use coverage will pay for you to take alternative modes of transportation if your car is rendered unusable for a set period of time. For example, if it is damaged in a collision and will be in the repair shop for a week, loss of use coverage can reimburse you for transportation costs incurred during this time, ranging from public transit fees, taxi fares, to rental car fees.
How are car insurance premiums calculated in Chestermere?
Many Chestermere drivers want to know how much a car insurance policy will cost them. The reality is that the answer is different for each person. Why? Insurance companies in Alberta take into account a broad range of factors when determining rates. They need to in order to evaluate your risk level. Some of the most common factors an insurance company is likely to consider when calculating your Chestermere car insurance premium are as follows:
- Where you live (and where you regularly commute)
- Model, make, and year of vehicle
- Past claims
- Average mileage
- Driving experience
- Driving record
- Insurance history
- Deductible amount
- Regulatory bodies
- How you use your vehicle
Contact BrokerLink today to receive an accurate and competitive quote on your Chestermere auto insurance policy. All BrokerLink car insurance quotes are completely free of charge.
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Tips to improve driving in Chestermere
Before you start driving, it’s important to learn and adopt safe driving habits. After all, the more responsibly you drive, the less likely you will be to get into an accident. The BrokerLink team has put together a starter list of safe driving tips below, but if you want more, don’t hesitate to give us a call today:
Check for inclement weather and road hazards
Before hitting the road, we recommend checking the weather and your route. This way, you will know if any inclement weather is on its way, like heavy snow, rain, or fog. You will also know if there is any construction happening in your area or any car accidents to be aware of. Equipped with this information, you can make a call as to whether it's best to stay home today instead of driving or if you choose to drive, whether there is an alternate route that might be safer to take.
Remain alert at all times
Anytime you drive, 100% of your focus should be on the road. Remaining alert is key to driving safely, especially given how dangerous distracted driving has proven to be. That is why we suggest minimizing distractions by putting your phone away as soon as you get in the car. We also recommend holding off on eating, drinking, or smoking until the car is in park.
Abide by all traffic laws in Alberta
Traffic laws exist for a reason. Following them is essential. Not only will doing so keep you safe but it can help you avoid serious consequences, like fines or jail time. Plus, when you abide by all Alberta traffic laws, your odds of getting into an accident will be lower, which means fewer car insurance claims, and a cheaper auto insurance policy. So make sure to familiarize yourself with local traffic laws in Chestermere before getting behind the wheel.
Obey the speed limit
Speeding is a surefire way to increase your risk of getting into an accident. After all, the faster you drive, the less time you have to react to a potentially dangerous situation. With a shorter reaction time comes a heightened risk of getting into a serious accident. Thus, pay attention to all posted speed signs and abide by them. In certain situations, you should even drive slower than the speed limit, like if you’re in an area with lots of pedestrian traffic or construction, or if you’re driving in adverse weather conditions.
Use your signal to make other drivers aware of your intentions
It is good practice to use your signal anytime you are manoeuvring and need to indicate your intention to other drivers. For example, using your signal lets other drivers know that you plan to turn or merge into another lane, which gives them time to adjust their driving to allow for this.
Keep to the right lane
Keeping to the right lane is a good rule of thumb, whether you are driving on a residential road or a highway. The right lane is for driving and the left lane is for passing. If you need to pass, do so safely and then immediately change back into one of the right-hand lanes. Weaving in and out of lanes is dangerous and can lead to further risk of collisions or accidents.
Increase your visibility
Driving safely is a whole lot easier if you have good visibility. While there are certain conditions that make visibility difficult, like driving at night, in the rain, or through fog, there are steps drivers can take to increase their visibility. For example, keep your windshield, all windows, and side mirrors as clean as possible, clearing them of snow and other debris in the winter. Use your high or low beams at night or in fog when driving on dark roads, and finally, wear sunglasses on days with high glare.
A guide to filing an auto insurance claim in Chestermere, Alberta
So you got into a car accident. What next? Typically, the next step is to file a car insurance claim with your insurance provider, but many drivers aren’t sure how to do this. That is why the BrokerLink staff has put together this guide to filing an auto insurance claim:
Contact your insurance provider
After calling emergency services and making sure everyone is safe, the next thing you should do is contact your insurance provider. Chances are you will need to file a car insurance claim, and your insurance provider will walk you through that process. They will explain the next steps, as well as which coverage applies to your scenario. They can also answer any questions you may have, like what information you will need to provide and how long the claims process will take.
Gather as much information as possible
Anytime you file an insurance claim, you should be prepared to provide as much information as possible about the incident. The more evidence you can offer, the better. So now is the time to start collecting photos, videos, written records (including police statements, if applicable), and more.
Fill out any necessary insurance forms
Once you’ve gathered your evidence, it’s time to fill out the forms provided by your insurance provider. Nowadays, the forms can likely be filled out and sent back virtually. If you want your claim to be processed as quickly as possible, we recommend filling out these forms soon after receiving them.
Cooperate with the insurance adjuster
The next step in the claims process is when an insurance adjuster investigates your claim. To do this, they may have questions for you or request additional information. Cooperate with them as best you can, responding to them in a timely manner and handing over whatever extra information they require.
Wait to hear the verdict
The last step is perhaps the most difficult - you must wait to hear word from your insurance company about whether your claim has been approved or denied. If your claim is approved, your insurance company will let you know what the payout will be and how you will receive it. If it is denied, you can ask any questions you have and look into your options for appealing your claim, if you are interested in this route.
For more information on car insurance claims in Chestermere, contact BrokerLink today.
We’re in your community
BrokerLink has been committed to the community since we were founded in 1991. Thus, you can trust us to be actively involved in every community we work in, including Chestermere. As one of Canada’s largest brokerages, you will find us engaged in a wide variety of local events and fundraisers. Learn more about what we do and how we put corporate social responsibility into practice by contacting BrokerLink today.
Local Alberta insurance links
If you’re a member of a group or association, you may be eligible for more discounts.
At Chestermere BrokerLink, we’re here to help you with any insurance needs you may have. Whether it’s insuring your home, car, business, recreational items, or pets, let us help you find the best coverage possible.
You can reach us by phone, email, or in person by visiting any of our locations across Alberta. No matter how you choose to get in touch, a BrokerLink insurance advisor will be happy to assist you. We also encourage you to take advantage of our free online quote tool that can provide you with a competitive quote in minutes.
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Auto insurance Chestermere FAQs
Can I get a snow tire discount on car insurance in Chestermere?
You may be eligible for a winter tire car insurance discount in Chestermere, so long as you meet the conditions set out by your insurance company. Many insurance companies in Alberta offer winter tire discounts to drivers who install snow tires on their cars, so long as the tires are installed by a certain date in the fall and remain on the vehicle until a set date in the spring. There might be other conditions that need to be met to qualify as well, like all four tires being the same make and model, but you will need to check with your local insurance provider to make sure.
How does renewing car insurance work in Chestermere?
Renewing car insurance is a task that an insurance agent or broker can help you with. It can usually be completed quite quickly by notifying your insurer that you want to continue with your coverage. Nowadays, you can likely contact your insurer over the phone, in person, or online, so you have several options as to how you want to renew your policy. The only time that renewing auto insurance in Chestermere gets a bit more complicated is if your car insurance policy has expired. Expired car insurance renewal is still possible but since you may have a gap in coverage, an insurance agent may have to re-evaluate your risk and your rates may be higher as a result.
If I get into an accident while driving, will my Chestermere car insurance premium go up?
Possibly. It depends on whether you caused the accident or not and the type of coverage your Chestermere auto insurance policy contains. First, if the accident was your fault, then the odds are that your premium will go up. However, you won’t see an instant increase. Instead, it will likely go up the next time your policy renews. If the accident was not your fault, then your premium will likely remain unaffected. Further, if you caused the accident but your policy contains accident forgiveness coverage, then your premium may not increase due to the accident,, as long as this was your first at-fault accident. It’s important to note thataccident forgiveness only covers the first at-fault accident, not subsequent accidents.
Can I drive without car insurance in Chestermere?
No. You cannot drive without car insurance anywhere in Alberta. Why? Auto insurance is a legal requirement everywhere in the province. Thus, driving without it is illegal. If caught, an officer could issue a fine worth tens of thousands of dollars, and if you were unable to pay this fine, you could face jail time. Further, your vehicle might be impounded and your driver’s licence may be suspended.
How can I save money on Chestermere auto insurance?
Drivers in Chestermere can save money on auto insurance by asking about discounts they could qualify for. There are all kinds of car insurance discounts available to policyholders in Alberta, such as winter tire discounts, employment-based discounts, education-based discounts, safe driver discounts, anti-theft device discounts, occasional driver discounts, driver’s education discounts, and telematics discounts. Combining multiple policies, a process known as bundling insurance policies, can also help you save money on Chestermere auto insurance.
With bundling, an insurance company will give you a discount on every policy you purchase, so long as you purchase more than one policy from them at the same time. This could be two car insurance plans, or one car insurance plan and another type of insurance entirely, like home or business insurance. Selecting high policy deductibles and only choosing the coverage you need can also help keep insurance rates low in Chestermere.
If you have any questions, contact one of our local branches.
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