How does car insurance work in Alberta?
Car insurance in Alberta works a bit differently than in other provinces. Under the Alberta Insurance Act, laws require you to purchase a mandatory amount of auto insurance coverage. The province uses a grid rate calculator to set your rates. The lower you are on the grid, the less you will pay.
The grid also has a maximum amount an insurer can charge you for mandatory insurance. Additional protection can be purchased from a licensed car insurance provider.
Alberta auto insurance rates and regulation
The industry is regulated by the provincial government. However, rates are overseen by the Automobile Insurance Rate Board (AIRB) and the Office of the Superintendent of Insurance.
Alberta has a no-fault system for car insurance
The province of Alberta uses a no-fault system for car insurance. It does not mean no one is at-fault for an accident. It means your insurance company will cover the damage no matter who is found to have fault for the accident.
What documentation do you need to purchase auto insurance in Alberta?
To buy car insurance in Alberta you need to provide the following information to your insurer:
- Bill of sale or lease agreement for the vehicle.
- Driver’s licence and date of birth of all drivers you want to include on the policy.
- Drivers training certificate for new drivers.
- Additional information may also be required.
Mandatory auto insurance in Alberta
You must meet the minimum requirement for mandatory auto insurance in Alberta:
- 200,000 in third-party liability.
- Anything beyond this is considered optional.
- The majority (98%) of Alberta drivers are insured for at least $1,000,000 in liability.
You will not be able to register your vehicle or drive without this coverage. Your rates for the minimum protection are determined using the grid rating program.
Additional minimum coverage included in your policy
- Medical payments: Up to $50,000 per person.
- Funeral expenses: $5,000.
- Disability income benefits: 80% of gross weekly wages to up maximum of $400/week for up to 104 weeks.
Optional car insurance in Alberta
You can add more optional coverage to your car insurance policy in Alberta. Options include:
- Comprehensive insurance: Protection against all insured damage caused to your vehicle.
- Collision insurance: Protection from damage caused by a collision with another car or object.
- Specified perils: Protect your vehicle from specific risks such as flood, fire, hail, or theft.
- All perils: Combines comprehensive and collision coverage and increased theft protection.
- Additional liability and accident benefits: You can increase your policy limits above the minimum requirements.
Drivers also have the choice to add endorsements, known as Standard Endorsement Forms (SEF), to further change their coverage.