While the amount saved will vary by individual, the average BC driver should save up to 20%, or about $400, on their ICBC insurance. The average annual insurance premium for full ICBC basic and optional coverage for B.C. drivers was approximately $1,900 in 2020. Enhanced Care will bring that average annual premium down to about $1,500.
Some of the factors affecting their savings include:
Those who choose to purchase full coverage with optional extended third-party liability will experience greater savings on their annual premiums for Enhanced Care coverage than those who purchase basic insurance.
With the changes coming into effect for all BC citizens on May 1st of 2021, the full savings will be seen on the first annual renewal following that date. Citizens will be owed a pro-rated refund, which is the difference in rates for the period remaining on the current insurance policy policies that extends past May 1st. These refunds will be issued to the majority of eligible customers between mid-May and July 2021.
No matter how you get your refund, all customers will receive a letter from ICBC with the details of how it was calculated.
There will be no maximum limit to your medical care and rehabilitation expenses. This offers greater support for those who have been injured in a crash during what may be a lengthy recovery. It can be applied to:
Individuals unable to work due to an injury will receive 90% of their net income in wage loss benefits. This is based on a maximum gross annual income of $100,000. Those with income over this amount may choose to purchase additional coverage to provide a higher wage loss limit.
Increased to approximately $ 5,000/ month for those in need of assistance with personal tasks such as dressing, bathing, eating, and housekeeping.
The amount for a surviving spouse increases from the current $30,000 to $66,000 – $500,000. Benefits for dependants will also increase significantly, and funding for funeral expenses will be available to a maximum of $9,000.
At present, should you suffer a serious injury, you would be forced to make do with a one-time settlement. Under the new Enhanced Care Coverage, ICBC will continue to provide for your medical care following an accident for as long as necessary. Your doctor or primary care provider will develop your recovery plan with the assistance of ICBC and the rest of your health care team (physiotherapists, etc.) to provide you the support you need for your recovery.
This enhanced care is being made available to all BC citizens, regardless of responsibility in the crash. No one will be required to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, and those involved in single-car crashes will also receive the care they need. Drivers causing an accident do still face consequences in the form of higher premiums and may still be sued for compensation if found guilty of certain criminal code violations, such as impaired driving.
Enhanced care will also provide individuals with 90% of their net pre-collision income in tax-free instalments even if they are at fault for the accident. The amounts paid will increase annually to match inflation, and at age 65, recipients will be eligible for retirement benefits from ICBC for the remainder of their lifetime.
The most vulnerable of road users—cyclists, and pedestrians—are not required to purchase ICBC insurance to be eligible for the benefits in the event of injury in a car accident.
By removing the costs associated with lawyers and legal fees, ICBC can pass on those savings, making Enhanced Care Coverage possible, and providing greater care, recovery, and wage loss benefits for those injured in a crash.
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