Canada: More Cuts To Car Accident Benefits In Ontario

Last Updated: May 31 2016
Article by Laleh Hedayati and Michael J. Henry

As a part of the many auto insurance changes that will affect all Ontarians come June 1, 2016, a number of accident benefits that individuals have had available to them as a part of the basic coverage provided by insurers will no longer be available automatically.

The Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule ("SABS") provides entitlement to benefits for people involved in motor vehicle accidents in Ontario. Regardless of whether or not the individual claiming benefits was at fault, and whether they are a driver, passenger or pedestrian, the SABS provides for certain specified benefits and amounts to be paid for specified periods of time.

Presently, the amount and duration of the payable benefit is determined by the level of injury sustained by the claimant; catastrophic ("CAT"), non-catastrophic and those which fall within the Minor Injury Guideline ("MIG"). The claimant may receive a number of benefits such as Medical and Rehabilitation expenses, Income Replacement for missing work, Non-Earner Benefits, Caregiver benefits, Attendant Care benefits and other benefits as a result of the accident.

On June 1, 2016 there will be significant reductions in benefits to claimants. The most significant of these reductions will be in the areas of Medical and Rehabilitation and Attendant Care benefits for individuals with catastrophic and non-catastrophic injuries.

Individuals with catastrophic (spinal cord injury, amputations and brain injury for example) will no longer have access to $1,000,000 for Medical and Rehabilitation and $1,000,000 for Attendant Care benefits, for a total of $2,000,000. These victims have a genuine need for these benefits in order to carry on with their day to day activities, nevertheless they will have a reduced and combined amount of $1,000,000, for their lifetime.

Those suffering from non-catastrophic injuries will no longer have $50,000 for Medical and Rehabilitation and an additional $36,000 for Attendant Care benefits, for a combined total of $86,000. These victims' benefits will be reduced to a combined amount of $65,000 for both Medical and Rehabilitation and Attendant Care benefits for a period of 5 years, as opposed to the previous 10 years for Medical and Rehabilitation benefits and 2 years for the Attendant Care benefits.

With respect to Non-earner benefits, under the current SABS, eligible claimants are paid $185.00 per week for a period of up to two years following the accident. There is a 6 month waiting period. The insured individual must suffer a complete inability to carry on a normal life in order to be eligible for this benefit. Two years after the accident, the individual may receive an increased amount of $320.00 per week, if they still qualify. After June 1, 2016, the waiting period of 6 months will be reduced to 4 weeks, but benefits will end after 2 years from the date of the accident.

When dealing with catastrophic injuries, the new changes will radically affect the definition of catastrophic impairment. In defining catastrophic injuries, there are revised definitions and new testing criteria for traumatic brain injuries for adults and children, amputations, ambulatory mobility, loss of vision, and mental and behavioral impairments. There is a new process for determining catastrophic injuries by combining physical and mental as well as behavioral impairments. This new definition will also provide for designation of catastrophic impairment for children with traumatic brain injuries, automatically, in certain circumstances. How these changes will affect individuals remains to be seen and could be a hot topic for more litigation.

Individuals now have the option to purchase additional benefits to increase their coverages. For example the Medical and Rehabilitation and Attendant Care can be covered back to the $50,000 and $36,000 respectively, but the additional benefit will come at an additional cost. This is why it is imperative that individuals carefully review their insurance policies when it comes time for renewal and ensure that they give serious consideration to increasing their Medical and Rehabilitation benefits and consider their needs for Attendant Care benefit coverage.

By law, there is a minimum requirement of Third Party insurance coverage in Ontario of $200,000.00. Most drivers have at least $1,000.000.00 Third Party coverage. Consideration to increase Third-Party Liability Coverage is essential because if someone is involved in an accident, and they are found at-fault for the accident, the injured party can sue them for damages. If their insurance policy limits are not adequate to cover the damages, the injured party can pursue the at-fault individual personally for any assets or wages over their insurance coverage. As SABS are a credit towards tort damages, in the past, the higher SABS provided for lower damage awards. Now, with the lower SABS amount, there is more personal exposure. Increased Third Party coverage can help protect the at-fault individual's personal assets. It is suggested that you should increase your Third Party coverage to at least $2,000,000.00. The increased premium cost can be minimal in comparison to the risk of personal exposure.

Based on all of these changes, the government has suggested that Ontarians will get increased savings with reduced insurance premiums. However, one must pay more now to get the same benefits which were provided to them at no additional cost before the new changes, and will have to pay more to increase their Third Party coverage to protect themselves. It is the opinion of most all in the know that the changes are detrimental to Ontario drivers and the promised reduced premiums will not compensate for the loss of coverage and benefits. It is imperative that all automobile owners call their brokers and/or insurers in order to purchase optional benefits and increase Third Party coverage to protect themselves and their loved ones.

Click to Download the 2016 Statutory Accident Benefits Summary [PDF].

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers
In association with
Related Topics
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Gluckstein Personal Injury Lawyers
Related Articles
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions