This past March, British Columbians were asked by the provincial government to provide feedback on whether or not bad drivers should pay more for their Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) premiums.  This way, good drivers would have the benefit of paying less for their insurance. The results have been tallied with 82% in favour of the notion. Consequently, drivers with several violations may have to start paying higher premiums starting this fall.

Changes in the ICBC

In addition to the 20% penalty increase for premiums, the survey made some proposals to update the 30-year-old auto insurance rating system of ICBC. These proposals included:

  • placing responsibility for collisions on the driver of the vehicle instead of the owner
  • establishing a 10% discount for customers who drive less than 5,000km in one year
  • putting a limit on the cost of at-fault vehicle damage so it won’t remain on a driver’s record

More changes will be made in the coming months based on the feedback from B.C. residents. The province is waiting for the approval of the utilities commission for the hike in premiums.

How to Avoid Higher Premiums

If you want to avoid paying 20% more on your premiums, we strongly advise you focus on improving your driving skills. An excellent way to do this is to take refresher courses at one of the many driving schools B.C. has to offer. Retaking courses will remind you of the finer points of driving, which include wearing your seatbelt and keeping a 2-3 second gap between yourself and the next car. Driving can prove more difficult in bad weather, so a driving instructor will jog your memory that you must modify normal driving rules, such as increasing the 2-3 second gap to 6-8 seconds.

Keeping your vehicle in working condition is another way to improve your driving skills. By having regular tune-ups, replenishing your emergency kit, and cleaning your vehicle on a consistent basis, you will help in keeping yourself and others safe on the road and show authorities—if a situation should arise—that you have been doing everything necessary to be a good driver.

Your Driving Offence Lawyers

It’s important to practice safe driving and maintain a working vehicle, but it doesn’t guarantee you’ll never have to deal with law enforcement in some way. If you are charged with a driving offense, the lawyers at Sicotte and Sandhu are here to help you avoid long-term damage to your driving record, loss of license, and more severe consequences. We expertly handle driving offences as well as DUI offences, so if you need assistance in Surrey and Peace River, contact us today.