Snowbird Accidents Ontario (Canada)
Like the birds they emulate, Canadians are fond of migrating south for the winter season, and who can blame them? From the warmer climates, to the sparkling waterways and the many outdoor activities that keep them busy, Snowbirds find much to enjoy and appreciate in the Southern U.S. Unfortunately, snowbird accidents can occur in Ontario as well as anywhere on route to southern destinations.
It should therefore come as no surprise that millions of people migrate to warm spots in the USA every year. Florida is considered one of the most popular southern destinations for snowbirds.
Ontario snowbirds need to know their car Insurance policies respond if they are involved in any type of car, motorcycle, truck or pedestrian accident in Continental North America.
Furthermore, each province has Statutory (contractual) Accident Benefits – provisions imposed by the province upon the private car insurers -to cover immediate expenses such as medical, rehabilitation and care benefits. Ontario has levels of SABS that range from $2500, $60,000, $1,000,000, and $2,000,000.
In addition, most if not all Canadian car, truck and motorcycle liability policies include underinsured and uninsured coverage. For example, most US States have very low mandatory liability insurance coverages available to compensate innocent victims:
- New York – $25,000
- Michigan (cat fund)
- Massachusetts – $20,000
- Pennsylvania – $15,000
- West Virginia – $20,000
- South Carolina – $25,000
- Georgia – $25,000
- Florida – $10,000
In comparison Ontario’s minimum limit is $200,000.
Another key factor is that Ontario Snowbirds no longer have Ontario health Insurance coverage. Supplementary private emergency coverage is now the norm.
Snowbirds’ liability and rights if involved in an accident outside of Canada:
The state or province in which the accident happened dictates a claimants “Tort rights”. This references someone’s right to sue for pain and suffering any any financial losses. “Contractual rights” such as private medical policies, and personal insurance benefits (SABS) remain in the province or state where the insurance policy was purchased. For example if a Canadian is involved in a Florida accident, Florida Tort law applies.
The Canadian (Ontario) contractual rights remain in Canada.
- if a Canadian snowbird is at fault for the accident substantial liability limits are available for injured parties to access. This can include passengers, or other not at fault drivers & motorcyclists & pedestrians.
- if the Canadian snowbird is not at fault or partially at fault and is injured by a uninsured or uninsured driver, he or she can access their Canadian coverage to provide the compensation.
- Please remember Ontario passengers have their own rights and remedies. They too have Tort rights (they can sue); and, Contractual rights they include undersinured motorist coverage and Statutory Accident Benefits.
Sound complicated. It is. Cross Border Accidents can be very challenging and very few lawyers understand the complexities involved. This is where we come in.
SnowbirdAccidents.com arranges for you to speak to some of the best Personal Injury Lawyers and/or some of the best Personal Injury Attorneys, who are familiar with cross border accidents and limitations. We all work collaboratively throughout the various jurisdictions in order to protect you and your family.
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Call for a free consultation and to see if you’re eligible to be compensated for your injuries sustained while being a snowbird.