You are protected in case of bodily injury
Since auto insurance can help pay for medical expenses, it comes in handy if you are injured following a car accident. While your health insurance will likely cover the majority of medical costs, your car insurance provider can help pay additional costs not covered by your health insurance, such as physical therapy, prescription medications, or rehabilitation.
You are protected in case of an accident
Car accidents happen to people of all ages. Even the safest, most cautious drivers can find themselves in a collision. At least with a seniors car insurance policy, you’ll be protected from the financial losses associated with collision. For example, if your vehicle is damaged in an accident, your insurer can help you cover the cost of repairing or replacing it. They even provide you with a rental vehicle while yours is in the shop.
You are protected in case of theft
If your senior’s car insurance includes comprehensive coverage, you will be protected in the event that someone steals your car. In the event your car is stolen, your insurance provider will help cover the costs of a new one. Comprehensive coverage can also protect you against vandalism, fires, water damage, and more.
You are in compliance with the law
The last benefit senior drivers get by purchasing auto insurance is that in doing so, they comply with the law. Auto insurance is mandatory throughout Canada, so if you wish to drive, no matter your age, you must have a valid car insurance policy. Failing to drive without insurance can lead to hefty fines, jail time, and a suspension of your driver’s license.
Canada’s laws on senior citizen drivers
In Canada, there is no age limit on who can be qualified to get car insurance. As long as you are capable of driving, you will be able to buy car insurance.
Take note that some provinces require folks over the age of 80 to take a driving license renewal program. There’s no need to stress! Programs like these are an opportunity to refresh your knowledge of driving rules and make sure you’re staying safe on the roads. You might have been driving for over fifty years, but it never hurts to take a refresher course. Some of the things you might have to do in a driver’s license renewal program include:
- Eye exam
- In-person class
- Pass a driving test
How to save on seniors car insurance
Here are a few tips and tricks on ways you might be able to save on car insurance if you’re a senior:
Maintain your health
This is important for many reasons – keeping your car insurance premium low is just one of them! Maintaining good health will help keep you safe on the road. It will lower your chance of an accident which will help keep your premium low.
Opt for User Based Insurance (UBI)
User based insurance means your insurance company uses an app to monitor your driving. You usually get a discount just for using the app, and if you practice safe driving habits, you can save even more. Don’t worry, your privacy is protected when using these apps. Talk to your insurance broker to see if you qualify for user based insurance.
Take advantage of retiree offers
If you are retired, you may be able to save on your insurance. Talk to your broker to see if you qualify.
Sometimes groups offer deals on insurance. For example, if you’re in a curling club, hunting or fishing club or any other type of group, ask them if they have a relationship with an insurance company. You may be able to get a discounted or preferred rate.
Reduced time on the road
If you find yourself driving less frequently, make sure you let your insurance broker know. You may qualify for a lower rate.
Safety tips for senior drivers
One of the most effective ways to keep your insurance rate as low as possible is by avoiding accidents. Here are a few tips you can consider that will keep you safe on the roads:
Make sure your car is in good condition
Get regular maintenance checks and keep your car in good working order.
Take the weather into account when driving
If there is rain, snow or fog, make sure you adjust your driving habits accordingly.
Ask your doctor if your medication can affect your driving
Some medications can affect your sight or concentration. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist to see if this is the case. If your medication does affect your driving, you may be able to plan your driving and medicine schedule so you stay safe.
Avoid heavy traffic areas when driving
One of the best things about being a senior is you can finally operate on your own time table! Consider driving at off-peak hours to reduce the chance of an accident.
Avoid driving at night
Limited visibility can make driving at night more difficult. Consider avoiding it if you can.
Take a driver’s education course
It’s not mandatory until you’re 80, but consider taking a driver’s education course before then.
Continue to enjoy your retirement by protecting yourself with the right car insurance for seniors. Let BrokerLink help you explore your options.
Mandatory types of car insurance for seniors
Since car insurance is required in Canada, senior drivers must make sure they have valid, up-to-date policies at all times. Car insurance isn’t just for the benefit of the policyholder. It aims to protect all drivers, passengers, and cars on the road. For this reason, make sure that you never get behind the wheel without a valid insurance policy. A valid insurance policy is one that meets the minimum requirements in your province or territory. The minimum requirements vary by province but most standard policies include four types of coverage: third party liability, direct compensation, uninsured automobile, and accident benefits. Therefore, all senior drivers should make sure their policy complies with the provincial requirements. If you aren’t sure what the mandatory requirements are in your province, contact BrokerLink today.
Third party liability
Third party liability protects senior drivers against the cost of bodily injury or property damage if they get into an accident that they are liable for. Liability coverage may help cover the cost of vehicle repairs, medical expenses, legal bills, and court fees, if applicable. This type of coverage is mandatory across Canada, though each province and territory sets the minimum amount. For example, in Ontario, Alberta, and New Brunswick, the minimum amount of liability coverage drivers must carry is $200,000.
Direct compensation coverage protects the policyholder in the event that they get into an accident that is not their fault. This type of coverage provides compensation if you suffer a bodily injury or if your car is damaged in the accident. Under the direct compensation portion of your policy, you will contact the insurance company to settle your claim, and they will typically pay you directly.
If you, a passenger, or a pedestrian require medical attention following a collision, accident benefits coverage can protect you. Unlike liability coverage or direct compensation, it does not matter whether you are at fault for the accident. You can still receive compensation from the insurance provider to cover medical expenses that aren’t covered by the victim’s health insurance. That said, there are limits to what is covered and the amount of money you can claim, so it’s important to understand these terms when purchasing car insurance for seniors.
Lastly, uninsured automobile coverage protects the driver and any passengers in their vehicle if they’re involved in an accident with an at-fault driver who is either uninsured or underinsured. This type of coverage also protects the policyholder in the event of a hit-and-run.
Optional car insurance coverage for seniors in Canada
Beyond the mandatory coverage types listed above, senior drivers have several other optional coverage types available to them. The following three types of optional coverage may be beneficial to elderly drivers in Canada.
Collision coverage protects the policyholder if they get into an accident with another vehicle or object on the road. Under the collision coverage section of your policy, no matter whether you are at fault for the accident, you can receive compensation to help pay for property damage that resulted from the accident, such as a damaged vehicle.
For peace of mind, many senior drivers in Canada choose to add comprehensive coverage to their car insurance policies. While standard car insurance coverage in Canada protects against collisions, it does not protect drivers from other risks associated with the road. Namely, theft, vandalism, fire, and water damage. However, comprehensive coverage may protect the policyholder against these other losses and more.
Accident forgiveness coverage
One final type of optional car insurance coverage that may be beneficial to seniors is accident forgiveness. This coverage prevents an increase in your insurance rates after your first at-fault collision. Please note that accident forgiveness coverage only applies to the first at-fault collision, not subsequent collisions.
What determines senior car insurance rates?
Multiple factors are used to calculate car insurance rates for seniors. Where you live, the type of car you drive, your marital status, and even your annual mileage can all impact how much you’ll pay for seniors car insurance. Drivers of all ages might find it helpful to know which details insurance companies take into account when calculating insurance premiums. Keep reading to discover a few of the most important factors that determine the cost of senior car insurance.
One of the top factors in determining the cost of seniors’ car insurance is the policyholder’s driving history. Driving history makes up both driving experience and driving record. Having several years, or in the likely case of a senior, decades of driving experience can work to your advantage, but only if you have a relatively clean record.
A clean record is free from speeding tickets, collisions, and DUIs. If you have a clean driving record, you may benefit from the best insurance rates for seniors. In contrast, senior drivers with records that include several incidents will likely see it reflected in your premium. Therefore, the most effective way to get the best car insurance rates for seniors is to drive safely and responsibly, obeying the rules of the road at all times.
The cost of senior car insurance also depends on the amount of coverage you choose to buy, as well as the amount of coverage you are required to buy. Each Canadian province sets its own regulations relating to auto insurance, including the minimum amount of coverage required. For example, in Ontario, Alberta, and New Brunswick, drivers are legally required to carry $200,000 in third party liability coverage at all times. However, in Nova Scotia, drivers must carry a minimum of $500,000 in third party liability coverage. The higher the coverage requirement or the more coverage you choose to purchase, the more costly your policy will be.
Most senior drivers know that age is a significant factor in determining car insurance costs. New drivers and senior drivers tend to pay more for car insurance for a variety of reasons.
*The age to qualify as a senior varies by province. Check with BrokerLink to see if you qualify.
Where you live can directly impact how much you pay for car insurance. Typically, senior drivers that live in or frequently travel to major cities, such as Toronto, Montreal, or Vancouver, will pay a higher premium than those who live in rural areas. High-density areas translate to more traffic, which in the eyes of the insurance company, increases your odds of getting into an accident.
Another geographic factor that can influence the cost of seniors car insurance is if you live in an area prone to climate related incidents, such as flooding.
Car make, model, and year
The make, model, and year of your vehicle also matter when it comes to calculating car insurance premiums. These details help insurance companies evaluate how likely it is that your car will be stolen and how much your vehicle would cost to repair or replace if damaged or stolen. Insurance rates are typically highest for drivers of new or luxury vehicles and lower for drivers of older or used cars. However, if your car is new and equipped with safety features or anti-theft devices, the insurance company may take this into account.
How frequently you drive your car is another factor that can impact your senior car insurance rate. If you drive very rarely, such as a few times each week, you are less likely to get into an accident and your insurance rate may be lower.
Conversely, if you spend a lot of time behind the wheel or you frequently drive at night or on major highways, then your chances of getting into a collision increase, along with the cost of your car insurance.
Lastly, insurance providers may want to know your marital status when providing you with a seniors car insurance quote. This is because the data suggests that married people are more financially stable and responsible, which insurance companies believe translates to better driving. It might not seem fair, but the reality is that married drivers tend to pay less for car insurance than their single counterparts.
BrokerLink knows seniors auto insurance
At BrokerLink, our licensed insurance advisors have access to the best plans for seniors. We take the time to get to know our clients so we can find customized plans that fit their needs. We work with the most trusted insurance companies across Canada. Plus, we have extensive experience insuring all kinds of insurance, including car insurance for seniors.
Call BrokerLink today to get seniors car insurance
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Pro tip: Even if your car isn’t new, you can upgrade it with safety features. Additional safety features can lead to discounts on your insurance. Talk to a broker to learn more!
FAQs on seniors auto insurance
If I retire before my 50th birthday, can I take advantage of car insurance retiree discounts?
Yes. Retiree discounts are usually based on the fact that you’re no longer making a daily commute to work. Whatever age you retire at, make sure you let your insurance broker know. They’ll add any applicable discounts.
Should I get telematics for my car?
Yes you should! Telematics such as Intact’s my DriveTM use an app on your phone to monitor your driving activities. You’ll save money if you practice safe driving habits. Note that you’ll need a smart phone to use telematics. Talk to your broker to learn more.
What are accident-free discounts?
Accident-free discounts might be available to drivers with no at-fault accidents on their record. Keep in mind that many factors will determine your rate. While your driving history is important, and it’s great to have an accident-free record, there are other things an insurance company will consider.
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