No matter where you live in Ontario, you need to have a standard auto insurance policy if you’ll be driving a car. Your policy includes third-party liability coverage, direct compensation coverage, statutory Accident Benefits coverage and uninsured automobile coverage. These endorsements are found within Ontario Policy Change Forms (OPCF). They are an add-on to your auto policy that either provide extra coverage or change what has coverage. How? By altering your auto insurance contract. Endorsements allow you to cover more situations or types of damage that you may encounter. They can also add perks to your car insurance, however, insurers use endorsements to limit your coverage in some cases. In this article, we explain what OPCF forms are and which ones to choose from, depending on your needs, location and insurer.
What are Ontario Policy Change Forms?
During your lifetime, there may be times when you want to change, add or reduce the amount of coverage on your car insurance policy. Perhaps you want additional coverage so you can drive a rental car. Or, you have a clean driving record and want to protect it should you need to make a claim. OPCFs enable you to customize your insurance to suit your situation. They’re also sometimes known as “riders.” These riders can be given during your policy term. Additionally, they can also be given at the time of purchase or when you renew the plan. It’s a legally-binding change to an insurance contract.
Common OPCFs in Ontario
There are many different types of OPCF endorsements that you can purchase for your automobile policy. The amount of impact the endorsement will have on your policy rates depends on the type of OPCF you are adding. We have a list of the most common OPCFs endorsements available to Ontario drivers:
OPCF 20: Rental car coverage
This endorsement provides you with protection for transportation replacement and rental car insurance if you were to get into a car accident or if your vehicle is stolen. The OPCF 20 definition allows you to choose to either rent a car or hire a taxi while your vehicle receives repairs.
OPCF 27: Drive another person’s vehicle
If you are driving a vehicle that you do not own, an OPCF 27 provides you with physical damage insurance for the vehicle. Whether it’s your parents’ or friend’s vehicle, or a rental car while out of town, you have coverage. If you cause damage to a vehicle while driving, you also have coverage. To learn more about this endorsement, click here.
OPCF 39: Accident forgiveness/waiver
This endorsement ensures that your first at-fault claim won’t have an effect on your driving record. Additionally, it ensures that your premiums won’t increase at renewal time.
OPCF 43: Removing depreciation deduction
As soon as you drive a new car off the lot, it starts depreciating in value. Generally, when you make a claim for loss or damage, your insurer deducts depreciation from the value of your car before it pays you out. This endorsement ensures you receive reimbursement for the full purchase price. This type of endorsement is only available for the first two years of ownership. This is because your car’s full value is still quite high. Your vehicle must also be totally brand new (i.e. no previous owners and no previous repairs). Without it, you may find yourself without enough money to buy a new vehicle, should you need to.
OPCF 44R: Family protection coverage
This insurance endorsement allows your family members coverage to the same limits as you. Even if everyone in your family is a good driver, third-party liability protects against the at-fault actions of other drivers. In particular, it protects you against underinsured drivers, uninsured drivers (which is illegal in Ontario) or if you are the victim of a hit-and-run accident.
Other useful Ontario Policy Change Forms (OPCF)
OPCF 5: Rented or leased vehicle
This endorsement extends coverage to a vehicle that you drive, but that is owned by a leasing company.
OPCF 16: Suspension of coverage
Whether you go south for the winter, or store a vehicle for a long period of time, you will not want to pay for auto insurance while the vehicle isn’t being driven. Add the OPCF 16 endorsement to your vehicle while it is not in use or in storage for a long period. You will most likely result in a refund of a portion of your premium. Essentially, it cancels your car insurance until it is reinstated. For that, you need a “Reinstatement of Coverage” or OPCF 17. Your insurer may choose to refund a portion of your insurance, and only if the suspension is at least 45 days.
OPCF 17: Reinstatement of coverage
If you have an OPCF 16 on your policy, you will have to apply for an OPCF 17 to reinstate your coverage.
OPCF 19: Limiting the amount paid for loss or damage coverages
This type of endorsement “lists the maximum that the insurance company will pay out in the event of a loss.” This endorsement is separate from the OPCF 19A, which agrees to pay a pre-determined amount.
OPCF 28 & 28A: Reducing coverage for named persons
If someone in your family with access to your car has a poor driving record, they may be driving up your rates. A complete OPCF 28 endorsement states both you and your insurer agree the excluded driver will not be driving your vehicle. Both owner and excluded driver must acknowledge that your insurer will not pay for any damages. Any damages to property, the automobile, or injuries by an excluded driver are ‘excluded’. However, while an OPCF 28 will reduce coverage for a specific driver, the OPCF 28A will completely exclude the driver from your insurance.
To summarize OPCFs
Ontario Policy Change Forms (OPCF) are how changes are made to your auto policy. These endorsements are policy changes that can be added during the term of your policy without renewing the policy. Remember, your premiums may change as a result of an endorsement. As your life changes, so will your insurance needs. Speak to one of our isure representatives when an important change comes along that may affect your insurance needs!