Question Raised By Amendment To Ontario’s Vehicle Insurance

During the past year, Ontario has added some amendments to the government provision that has made Vehicle Insurance available to Ontario’s car owners. Following the addition of those amendments, some residents of Ontario were asking this question: Exactly who gets insured by a family member’s vehicle insurance?

The simple answer

The new amendment guarantees coverage dependents of the person that is mentioned in the insurance policy. That includes the policy holder’s spouse.

How does the government define a dependent?

A dependent is a relative that has come to rely on support from the policy holder.

How does the court interpret the meaning of dependency?

Court decisions have shown that the court system views a dependent as an individual that relies primarily on the care or the financial support that is furnished by the holder of the vehicle insurance policy.

Personal injury lawyer in Leamington knows that questions raised by a judge, if a plaintiff seeks coverage of a dependent by the same plaintiff’s vehicle insurance. If the dependent has filed a personal injury claim, the judge might ask these questions:

• Could the claimant manage to support himself/herself, without the help of the person that holds the vehicle insurance policy?
• Does a strong dependent relationship exist between the claimant and the individual that has obtained the coverage offered by the vehicle insurance policy?
• What is the nature of the dependency that has been declared by the claimant?

Information sought by judge, when asking the above questions:

Judge seeks to know if the claimant can support himself/herself, in order to determine the extent of the claimant’s reliance on the person that possesses the vehicle insurance coverage. A claim should not get viewed as a means for adding to the limited income of someone without strong ties to the insured.

Judges inquire about the strength of the alleged dependent relationship, in order to keep a temporary guest from going after the benefits offered by the vehicle insurance coverage. Temporary usually means someone that has lived under the insured’s roof for less than 3 months.

How did the dependency get established? Did it evolve from the natural nature of a familial relationship? Did it progress as the insured felt compelled to offer a larger amount of care or financial support? Had the insured’s offer represented an effort to take-over care or support that someone else had offered in the past, or had refused to offer, when asked?

Judges strive to make a decision that matches with the government’s definition of dependent. That definition focuses on the amount of support provided by the named dependent. A judge’s ruling gets made after an alleged dependent’s filing of a claim, in hopes of gaining access to the coverage made available through the vehicle insurance.