What you need to know about car insurance policy renewals

May 14, 2018

Today we’re digging into everyone’s favourite topic: reviewing your car insurance policy renewal! Hold on tight folks, it’s going to be a wild ride.

How Vehicle Insurance Renewals Work in Nova Scotia:

Before we jump into what you should look for when reviewing your policy renewal documents, here’s the lowdown on how vehicle insurance renewals work in Nova Scotia: all policies automatically renew every year on their expiry date unless the person being insured or the insurance company cancels the renewal.

If you don’t want your car insurance policy to renew, you need to get in touch with your broker or insurance company to request that your policy renewal be cancelled. Typically, you will need to sign a cancellation request form in order to do this.

If your insurance company is not willing to offer you a policy on renewal, they’ll let you know before your renewal date so you can find insurance elsewhere. Sometimes this can happen if you’ve had a number of claims, convictions, or traffic violations since setting up your policy and you no longer meet the “risk appetite” or your insurer. If you have an insurance broker (like Cheep Insurance!), they will get in contact with you to help you set up a policy with a different company before your renewal date. If you’re a Cheep Insurance client, we’ll do all the price shopping for you and compare pricing from 10+ different insurance companies to find you the best price possible for the coverage you’re looking for.

If you don’t cancel your policy or receive notice that the company has cancelled it, your policy will automatically renew on the day it expires.

Things That May Impact Your Car Insurance & Coverage Needs: 

Every year before your car insurance policy renews, you should make a point to let your broker know about any life changes that could impact your insurance coverage needs. These questions can help you pick out things that might require changes to your policy:

  • Contact info changes: has any of your contact info (address, phone number or email address) changed?
  • Vehicle use changes: has the distance you drive to/from work or school changed? Do you now use your vehicle for business purposes?
  • Changes to drivers in your household: is there anyone in your household with a driver’s license who is not listed on your policy and does not have insurance of their own?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you’ll need to let your broker know so they can help you make any necessary changes to your policy and ensure you have the right coverage in place.

If you’re a Cheep Insurance client, we’ll send you an email 30 days before your policy renewal to touch base about these questions. That way, you can just reply to the email to let us know if anything has changed and we’ll make any required changes for you.

Reviewing Your Car Insurance Policy Renewal Documents

You will receive a copy of your insurance policy renewal documents before your policy renewal date. It’s important that you take a few minutes to read over these docs to make sure all of the info is correct and your coverage still fits your needs.

If you’re a Cheep Insurance client, you’ll receive an email from us the week leading up to your renewal with instructions for accessing your renewal docs through our website / mobile app.

Vehicle Insurance Coverages Available Through Cheep Insurance: 

Below is a list of all the vehicle insurance coverages that are available through Cheep Insurance with a description of each to help you compare the coverage on your policy with what is available through our brokerage:

  • Collision Coverage: covers damages to your own vehicle (minus the deductible) in the event of an at-fault accident
  • Comprehensive Coverage: covers glass damage and theft as well as damages to your vehicle caused by fire, vandalism, or impact with wildlife (minus the deductible)
  • Loss of Use Endorsement (SEF 20): covers the cost of a rental car while your vehicle is being repaired or replaced after a collision or comprehensive claim
  • Legal Liability for Non-Owned Automobiles Endorsement (SEF 27): extends your auto insurance coverage to a rental vehicle anywhere in North America

Still with us? Good, we only have a few more to go!

  • Limited Waiver of Depreciation Endorsement (SEF 43): provides extra protection for brand new vehicles by making sure you get what you paid for the vehicle (purchase price on the bill of sale) in the event of a total loss in the first two years of owning the vehicle
  • Accident Waiver / Accident Forgiveness Coverage: protects you from premium increases due to your first at-fault accident
  • Claims Advantage Coverage: waives your deductible for physical damage in the event of a total loss

Once you’ve read over your renewal docs and compared your coverage with the coverages available through your broker, you’ll need to let your broker know if you’d like to make any changes to your policy. Your broker is always there to help with any questions you may have and provide advice if you need it!

If everything looks good, there’s nothing you need to do! Your insurance policy will automatically renew on the date listed on your renewal docs.

If you’re a Cheep Insurance client, you’ll receive an email from us on your renewal date with instructions for saving your new liability cards (pink cards) to your phone, as well as instructions for printing your pink cards if you’d like to have a paper copy as well.

Now that you’ve reviewed your renewal docs you can rest assured that you have the proper coverage in place and will be protected if you need to make a claim. Wasn’t that 15 minutes you took to review your car insurance policy worth that peace of mind?

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