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What Is Comprehensive Car Insurance?

Thursday, 8 September 2022

Most car owners in Canada know that car insurance is mandatory. However, it is important to understand that insurance differs by the type of coverage providers offer. You have probably been offered comprehensive insurance before but maybe you did not know what it was. To clear your doubts about what coverage it provides, the cost and differences with other types of insurance, and why several people select comprehensive coverage. We invite you to read the following guide.

What Is Included in Comprehensive Car Insurance?

Comprehensive car insurance gives you additional protection for loss or damage that is not caused by a collision. While mandatory car insurance protects you and your family medically and financially in the event of an accident, comprehensive car insurance protects your car from external factors that are out of your control. Some of the most common claims are:

  • Car theft
  • Vandalism
  • Fire damage or explosions
  • Damage caused by weather conditions such as hail, earthquakes, lightning, or windstorms 
  • Natural disasters
  • Damage caused by an animal
  • Falling objects

Although these damages are usually part of the comprehensive coverage with most insurance companies, it would be good to contact your insurance provider and make sure which ones are included in your policy.

Is Comprehensive Coverage Mandatory?

In Ontario and most provinces of Canada, comprehensive insurance is optional. However, if your car is leased or financed it is very likely that comprehensive coverage is required because the vehicle is not under your full ownership.  

Even if comprehensive insurance is not mandatory, it can be helpful at unexpected times. If someone tries to steal your car, damage a window or door, if hail damages your windshield, or if a strong wind in the middle of a storm causes a tree or other object to hit your car—all of these events can incur costly repairs that you probably don't have in your budget.

What's Not Covered by Comprehensive Insurance?

Always keep in mind that comprehensive insurance does not cover certain repairs such as:

  • Damage to your car caused by a collision
  • Medical expenses or loss of your income after an accident
  • Damage to another car as a result of an accident
  • Medical expenses or loss of income of other persons after an accident
  • Theft by a member of your household
  • Accidents involving a rented car

Should I Pay for Comprehensive Insurance?

  • If you purchase your car on a loan, you will notice that most lenders require comprehensive or collision car insurance until the vehicle is paid in full.
  • When you buy a new car, it is advisable to look for how costly repairs would be for the specific brand and model since many are usually expensive. To avoid any extraordinary payments it would be a good idea to have comprehensive coverage.
  • You have two options: you can buy a policy that includes all perils (collision and comprehensive coverage) or you can choose the specific perils you want to add and only pay for those which you think your car has more risk for.

How Much Does Comprehensive Insurance Cost?

The cost of comprehensive insurance is added to the mandatory insurance. The amount will also depend on the province where you live and the deductible you are willing to pay. The higher the amount you pay for your coverage deductible, the lower the cost of your premium. Usually, the cost of comprehensive insurance is between $100 to $300 on top of basic insurance. You can easily compare comprehensive car insurance quotes on My Choice to make sure you find the best price for your optional coverage.  

What is the Difference Between Comprehensive and Collision Insurance?

Both types of coverage—collision and comprehensive—are optional. Collision insurance protects your car from damage caused by a crash with another vehicle or object such as a fence, light pole, or traffic sign. On the other hand, the comprehensive coverage protects your car from damage caused by factors beyond your control. You can add and have both at the same time and you can opt out from one or all whenever you want.