How Car Insurance in Canada Differs from the United States of America

Car insurance in Canada and the United States is a mandatory requirement. Coverage in both countries is actually very similar although there are a number of noticeable differences in the way that insurance legislation works. When a motorist in Canada takes out a new policy, a pink slip is issued by their carrier and this must be carried by the driver at all times as proof of insurance.

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In some Canadian provinces, such as British Columbia and Saskatchewan, proof of insurance must be provided before a vehicle can be legally registered for road use. Canadian provinces have government insurers that can provide basic minimum levels of coverage and this can be supplemented with additional features such as anti-theft insurance and fire damage cover. Although the United States now has a small number of government approved schemes run by selected insurance carriers for low-income drivers, the overwhelming majority of policies are issued by traditional insurance companies.

There are a number of similarities between the two countries and the most noticeable comparison is the fact that different Canadian provinces require different levels of car insurance coverage in the same way as minimum insurance requirements can vary from state to state in the US. The actual framework of auto insurance is controlled very strictly by the Canadian government and coverage is provided through the Insurance Bureau of Canada. Although there are a number of insurers operating independently throughout the country, they have to follow different guidelines to the United States and do not have the same authority or levels of control that their American counterparts enjoy.

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