No-Blame Game: Alberta passes Bill 41, pivots toward no-fault auto insurance model

Edmonton, Alberta – A bill passed by the Legislative Assembly of Alberta last week is likely to present big changes to how the province’s auto insurance process is carried out, aimed to mirror similar models used in Ontario and New Brunswick.

Bill 41, passed in the assembly on Nov. 18, will see Alberta pivot toward a “no-fault” auto insurance model designed to reduce costly insurance prices by way of placing new restrictions on certain claims and streamlining aspects of the litigation process.

The most significant change this bill will introduce is that it will require the insurer to pay the insured for any damage to their vehicle and its contents regardless of fault.

Presently, if a not-at-fault motorist in Alberta has an accident, their insurer pays for repairs to their vehicle and its contents and then pursues a claim against the at-fault driver. 

This new detail is modelled in part after the no-fault system used in Ontario where, in the effort to mitigate the delays and costs involved in determining fault on each claim, the insured parties are paid out in nearly all cases.

As well, Bill 41 limits each party to either one to three expert witnesses depending on if the claim exceeds $100,000. A party can retain more experts if they get permission from the court or if all parties agree.

Dentists, psychologists, and occupational therapists are now providers of adjunct therapy under the new model with each claimant limited to $1,000 in coverage from these providers.


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