What happens if I am the victim of a hit-and-run?
A: If you are injured in a collision and the at-fault driver does not have insurance, or you are the victim of a hit-and-run where neither the driver nor the vehicle is identified, you may be eligible for compensation through the Alberta Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Program (MVAC).
In order to be eligible to claim through MVAC:
- You must be a resident of Alberta;
- The accident must have occurred in Alberta;
- The accident must be the fault of the uninsured or unknown driver, through no fault of your own;
- You must have suffered bodily injury as a result of the accident (note: property damage is not covered by the program); and
- You must notify MVAC of the accident within 90 days of the accident (failure to do so may be grounds for denial of your claim).
The maximum amount of compensation available through MVAC is $200,000 per accident. If there is more than one person injured in the same accident, the $200,000 will be split between all injured persons in proportion to the severity of their injuries and the value of their claims.
For more information on the Alberta Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Program visit https://www.alberta.ca/motor-vehicle-accident-claims-program.aspx.
Kantor LLP can review the circumstances of your accident and your insurance policy to determine whether you are entitled to compensation through MVAC.
What if the MVAC coverage is not enough to compensate me for my injuries?
If your claim exceeds the amount of compensation available through the Alberta Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Program (MVAC), you may be eligible to make a claim through your own insurance policy, if you have purchased additional coverage under the Family Protection Endorsement, or SEF 44.
What is SEF 44 Coverage and How Does it Work?
SEF 44 is designed to provide additional coverage for injuries arising from motor vehicle accidents in circumstances where the at-fault driver is unknown, uninsured, or underinsured.
In Alberta, drivers are only required to carry a minimum of $200,000 in third-party liability coverage. If you are injured by a driver with only $200,000 of liability coverage, and the value of your claim exceeds $200,000, you can claim the shortfall from your own insurance policy using your SEF 44 coverage.
If you are hit by an uninsured or unknown driver, the Alberta Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Program (MVAC) may compensate you for the value of your claim up to a maximum of $200,000. Again, if the value of your claim exceeds $200,000, you can claim the shortfall from your own insurance policy using your SEF 44 coverage.
The amount of SEF 44 coverage you have is based on the amount of third-party liability coverage you carry. For example, if your policy has $1,000,000 in third-party liability coverage, your SEF 44 coverage will also be $1,000,000. Note: SEF 44 coverage is additional coverage you must purchase. If you are uncertain as to whether you carry SEF 44 coverage, contact your insurance company or broker.
A common misconception is that SEF 44 coverage is over-and-above whatever compensation you would be entitled to receive under the at-fault driver’s insurance or MVAC. Rather, SEF 44 only covers you to the limit of your third-party liability coverage, less whatever compensation you may be entitled to receive from the at-fault driver’s insurance or MVAC.
For example, if you have $1,000,000 in third-party liability coverage, and you are injured by a driver who also has $1,000,000 in third party liability coverage, the maximum insurance claim you will be able to make is $1,000,000, not $2,000,000. In other words, if your liability coverage is the same amount as the liability coverage of the at-fault driver, you cannot make a SEF 44 claim.
Kantor LLP can review the circumstances of your accident and your insurance policy to determine whether you are entitled to SEF 44 coverage.