News release

Second Phase Fair Auto Insurance Reforms Implemented

The province is making it faster and easier for Nova Scotians to get care for minor injuries and compensation for property damage caused by automobile collisions.

Those injured can now get physiotherapy or chiropractic treatment without waiting for approval from an insurer or a physician's referral. The change is part of the second phase of major auto insurance reforms, which went into effect April 1.

"Being in a collision can be a scary and emotional experience, particularly if you're hurt," said Maurice Smith, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. "The last thing people should have to worry about is whether there is paperwork standing in the way of them receiving the care they need.

"Allowing direct access to a physiotherapist or chiropractor will make it easier for people to access better care sooner and start on the road to recovery. This is all part of government's commitment to provide consumers with fair, stable and affordable auto insurance."

People will also be able to recover property damages caused by a collision from their own insurer. This allows a person's own insurer to settle the claim, regardless of who is at fault.

The province is also changing how insurance policies are used for claims when rented and true lease -- leases without an option to buy -- vehicles are involved. The renter and driver's auto policy will apply first, followed by the rental and leasing companies' policy. This caps liability for rental and leasing companies at $1 million. Damages exceeding $1 million will be the responsibility of the driver/renter of the motor vehicle.

The reforms are part of the fair auto insurance package announced in 2011. They are based on the recommendations of an independent auto insurance review and cost analysis from the Utility and Review Board. The first phase was effective in April 2012.

The Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal was assigned responsibility for the Insurance Act in spring 2012. For more information on the fair automobile insurance reform package, visit www.gov.ns.ca/finance .

FOR BROADCAST USE:

The province is making it faster and easier for Nova Scotians to get care for minor injuries and compensation for property damage caused by vehicle collisions.

The changes are part of the second phase of major auto insurance reforms which went into effect April 1st.

Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Maurice Smith says the changes are part of government's commitment to provide consumers with fair, stable and affordable auto insurance.

There are also changes to how insurance policies are used in claims for rented and leased vehicles.

The driver/renter's policy will respond first, followed by the rental or leasing companies' policy. This caps liability for rental/leasing companies to 1 million dollars. Damages above 1 million dollars will be the responsibility of the driver or renter.

These reforms are part of the fair auto insurance package announced in 2011.

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Media Contact:

Sue McKeage
Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal 902-424-8978 Cell: 902-430-4662 E-mail: