Third-party liability coverage is still an important part of your auto insurance, despite ICBC’s new Enhanced Care, introduced on May 1st of this year. Enhanced Care, the biggest change ICBC has made in its more than 40-year history, provides every person involved in an automobile crash in BC with almost unlimited medical coverage. That means you can no longer sue a third party for your injuries.
3rd party liability insurance covers more
However, liability insurance covers more than just personal injuries. Consider the news story about the person who hit the gas pedal instead of the brakes when parking and drove the car into a house. The damage to the house was covered by the driver’s liability insurance. The damage to the car was covered by the driver’s collision insurance. Liability insurance covers physical damage to property.
Liability insurance outside BC
Liability insurance becomes even more important if you drive outside BC. For example, Alberta and Ontario still allow lawsuits, as do all states in the US. That means, if you are involved in a vehicle accident outside of BC where lawsuits are allowed, you can still be sued, and that’s when your liability insurance covers you.
Low coverage in the US
In BC, most people purchase two or three million dollars in liability insurance, but in the US, even a million dollars of liability coverage is unusual. By having low coverage and not paying out large claims, the US insurance companies keep their rates low. As a result, though, if you are hit in the US by a US motorist, their insurance policy will be the first to pay for your injuries and damage to your vehicle. Once their insurance is exhausted, your liability insurance will cover remaining costs.
Liability insurance, which has dropped dramatically in price since the introduction of Enhanced Care, provides coverage for types of damage that are not otherwise covered by the basic ICBC auto insurance.
If you don’t already have third-party liability coverage as part of your auto insurance policy, please contact your Murrick Group Insurance agent. We’d also be pleased to review all your insurance needs, including for your automobile, home, business, and travel.