July 15 2013

Sources of Compensation available following a Motor Vehicle Accident

Property Damage

After the initial treatment of any injuries sustained, the first concern most people have following a collision is dealing with the damage done to their vehicle. This will involve obtaining funding for any necessary repairs to the vehicle or, if the vehicle is written off, obtaining a lump sum payout for the value of the vehicle.

If you have collision coverage on your vehicle your insurer will be able to assist you. If you are at fault for the accident, they will pay for your property damage, less your deductible. If another party is at fault, and that party has insurance, your insurer will either pay for the property damage to your vehicle less your deductible and recover that amount from the at fault driver’s insurer, or else refer you to deal directly with the at fault driver’s insurer. In the first instance, your deductible should be reimbursed by the at fault driver’s insurer and in the second instance you should not have to pay a deductible.

If you do not have collision coverage on your vehicle and you are not at fault for the collision, the at fault driver’s insurer will be responsible for covering your property damage. It should be noted, however, that if you do not have collision coverage on your vehicle and the collision is caused by someone who does not have insurance or by some unidentified party, there will be no coverage available to you for the property damage to your vehicle.

Medical Expenses

If you are injured in a collision, there are often expenses associated with the treatment of your injuries, such as ambulance bills, prescriptions and any physiotherapy or other treatments recommended by your doctor.

If you have a “minor injury” and are being treated in accordance with the Diagnostic and Treatment Protocols Regulation, your treatment expenses will be covered by your Section B insurer in accordance with that regulation.

If your injury is not a “minor injury” or if you have a “minor injury” and are not being treated in accordance with the Diagnostic and Treatment Protocols Regulation, the first place to look for coverage of these expenses is through any private medical insurance you may have either personally, through your employer or through an immediate family member. If there is no private insurance available, or if that private insurer does not cover 100% of your medical expenses, you should look to your Section B insurer (see discussion on Section B benefits in the Standard Automobile Policy section of this brochure) to cover any expenses for which you are not reimbursed.

If you do not have private medical insurance and you have exhausted all of the benefits available to you under the Section B portion of your automobile policy, you may be able to obtain coverage for further medical expenses by making an application to the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund. This is a fund set up by the Government of Alberta to assist people who are injured in motor vehicle collisions and are in need of medical treatment, but do not have any other form of insurance coverage for medical expenses available to them.

If the collision was caused by the negligence of someone else, any expenses not covered by one or more of the above sources can be claimed in a personal injury action brought against the at fault party or parties.

Other sections in this article include:

  • Wage Replacement/Disability Benefits
  • Death Benefits
  • Workers’ Compensation Board
  • Your Personal Injury Claim

Read the entire pdf – Sources of Compensation available following a Motor Vehicle Accident.