It is a common misconception that everything that is inside your vehicle is covered under your auto insurance policy in case of theft. The truth is that only the vehicle itself and attached equipment is covered under an auto insurance policy in Ontario Canada. While auto theft claims are an on-going event, there are certain things you should know before you load up your car with valuable merchandise and leave the car parked on the street overnight.
For example, if a person is taking a TV in for repairs and the car is stolen with the TV still inside it, the TV is not covered. So too, if you have been visiting relatives during the holidays, and have not emptied the trunk filled with gifts and your car is stolen, while the car is covered on your auto policy, those gifts are not covered on your auto policy.
If a person is away on holiday and has luggage and clothing in the car and the car is stolen, the luggage and clothing are not covered under the auto policy.
So how do you insure the contents in your car? Quite simply – items such as a TV, luggage, clothing, cell phones, laptop computers, and CD’s are covered under property insurance.
Therefore, if you have both property insurance and auto insurance, any auto theft claims will not cover the contents inside the vehicle, but your property insurance will cover the loss of these items. However, note that you need to pay the deductible on both policies in order to seek compensation for your losses.
There is one caveat, however. Let’s assume that the CD’s stolen along with your car fall under the deductible. You would have to decide whether or not it is worth it to pay the difference. This holds true for clothing, cell phones, and other items which may not exceed the deductible.
Unfortunately, if a thief wants to steal your car, they can take it in seconds because today’s car thiefs are sophisticated and aware of every new auto theft prevention item on the market today.
According to one Canadian source, here are the most stolen vehicles for 2007:
*1999 Honda Civic SiR 2-door
2004 Subaru Impreza STi 4-door. This model also had the highest theft claim costs.
These sources also state that “none of the most frequently stolen cars are equipped with electronic immobilizers that meet the National Standard of Canada. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, regulations requiring all new cars, vans, light trucks and SUVs to come equipped with electronic immobilizers did not come into effect until September 1, 2007. The Honda Civic is a good example. Newer year models in which Honda did install immobilizers meeting the National Standard of Canada appear much lower on the list.
The next time you visit relatives, or go grocery shopping; check your car and trunk to ensure there are no valuables in the trunk or back seat. Prevention is the first line of defense against auto theft claims.
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