Ontario is known to have the highest auto insurance rates in Canada. Ontario has been trying to reduce the cost of auto insurance for several years. Though there have not been significant changes in auto insurance rates, there is a discount that will go into effect in the new year.
On January 1, 2016, auto insurers MUST offer a discount to their customers who have winter tires. Pursuant to Ontario Regulation 664, which was amended earlier this year, the winter tire discount must be made available for contracts issued or renewed on or after January 1, 2016.
However, there has been some confusion about the discount, and this article will address some ofthe confusing issues.
If my company already offers a winter tire discount, will the discount increase in the new year?
If your company already offers a winter tire discount, you will not get higher or additional winter tire discounts. Many auto insurance companies already offer a winter tire discount. According to the provincial finance minister’s office, about 45% of the companies already do so.
How much is the discount?
Unfortunately, the amendment to Regulation 664 does not provide how much of a discount insurers are required to provide. It just requires some sort of a discount. Therefore, the discount will vary between companies, and will probably be between 2% and 5%. In addition, the discount may not apply to the entire policy, just part of it.
Motorists should talk to their insurance companies and perhaps other companies to understand what insurance companies are offering.
Is the winter tire discount worth it if it only applies to a part of my policy?
Yes, it is. Though the discount may only apply to a part of a policy or is not as big as we would like, it can still save money for Ontario drivers. Aside from the discount, this is really about safety. Winter tires can help prevent Ontario accidents and save lives. Ontario roadways in the winter can be treacherous. With temperatures often dipping below freezing, roads and highways can be very slippery. Having winter tires helps drivers have better control of their vehicles and avoid catastrophic car accidents in Ontario.
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