Nova Scotia Introduces New Insurance Reforms: Halifax Personal Injury Lawyer Explains

by John McKiggan

Today Graham Steele, the Minister responsible for Nova Scotia’s Insurance Act announced new legislation to improve automobile insurance coverage in Nova Scotia. The Fair Automobile Insurance (2011) Act, will be introduced in the legislature today.

I was part of the Review Committe that provided advice to the province regarding what improvements needed to be made to Nova Scotia’s Insurance system: McKiggan Appointed to Provincial Insurance Review Committee

Highlights of Changes

Overall the changes improve the insurance coverage avaialable to consumers in Nova Scotia.

Repair Claims Will Be Covered By Drivers Own Policy

Persons involved in a collision caused by another party can deal with their own insurance company to get repairs done or get compensation for property damage. This was change was implemented in order to simplify and speed up the process that car owners have to go through so that they can get their car back on the road as fast as possible.

No Claim – No Premium Increase

It has become commonplace for parties involved in an accident to pay for claims themselves rather than being hit with massive premium increases after an accident. Even if the accident wasn’t there fault. The changes to the Insurance Act prevent auto insurers from increasing premiums for collisions where no claim was made and the driver paid for the damage, even if the driver was at fault.

Speed Access to Treatment

The legislation proposes to introduce treatment protocals that are designed to help injured victims get proper treatment faster.

Increase Medical Benefits

The legislation increases the minimum mandatory Section B Accident Benefits for things like medical and rehabilitation expenses, funeral costs, death benefits and income loss covereage for injured drives and passengers.

The changes increase the level of “no-fault” benefits to the same level as New Brunswick.

Optional “Full Tort” Coverage

The proposed legislation will allow drivers to buy optional (additional) insurance coverage that will give consumers the right to receive full compensation over and above Nova Scotia’s New “Minor Injury” Cap (2010 to date)

Regular Review

Finally the legislation commits the province to conducting a review of automobile insurance laws in Nova Scotia every seven years.

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