Suppose you were injured in a motor vehicle accident in Ontario. In that case, the law allows you to submit a claim for accident benefits, particularly if the accident was another person’s fault. You (the injured victim) will be dealing with insurers who are obligated to respond to tort claims on behalf of their clients (policyholders).
Sometimes, it is confusing to know whose insurer is responsible for addressing an injured person’s tort claim or accident benefits claim. In Ontario, all licensed motor vehicles require insurance. This makes it possible for the majority of vehicle accident victims to have a source of insurance from their own insurer or the at-fault driver’s insurer.
Usually, the injured victim will turn to their auto insurer for accident benefits and pursue the negligent driver’s insurer for a tort claim. But many potential factors often determine which insurer will respond to the accident benefits claim. In this case, consulting with a reputable accident benefits law firm will improve your chances of getting the amount of compensation you deserve.
Suppose there is no insurance company to address a tort claim or an accident benefits claim. In that case, the accident victims can turn to the motor vehicle accident claims fund set up by the Ontario provincial government as a safety net for accident victims in need of compensation for their injuries and medical treatment. This motor accident fund is often considered the payor of last resort. That means you must have exhausted all other sources of insurance before you turn to the motor accident fund.
Section 268 (2) of the Insurance Act in Ontario outlines the list of insurance that must respond to a tort claim or accident benefits claim before the motor vehicle fund responds. These insurance companies include the victim’s insurer, the insurance provider of the vehicle that struck the victim, the insurance provider of any other vehicle involved in the accident, and the motor vehicle accident fund.
With respect to the victim’s insurer, it doesn’t matter if the victim of the accident was not in their vehicle when the incident happened. Furthermore, the victim’s insurer will still be a priority insurer if the victim of the accident lives with, is married to, or is financially dependent on the person with vehicle insurance, even if the victim lacks an insurance policy.
Knowing the specific insurance provider responsible for addressing your tort claim can be confusing. In case you were hit by an unidentified driver, you can still pursue accident benefits claim through the motor accident fund. As mentioned earlier, this is a complex process that requires you to exhaust all other sources of insurance. Consult with an experienced lawyer for better outcomes.