Savings and refunds

Enhanced Care will make auto insurance in B.C. more affordable. Customers with full ICBC basic and optional coverage will save on average 20 per cent on their annual premiums. You may also be eligible for a refund for however long your current policy extends past May 1, 2021.

See what you'll save underEnhanced Care.

When do you renew your insurance with ICBC?

The average annual insurance premium for full ICBC basic and optional coverage for B.C. drivers was approximately $1,900 in 2020. Enhanced Care will bring that average annual premium down to about $1,500.

This means B.C. drivers will save 20 per cent on average, or about $400, on their ICBC insurance. Find out what your own Enhanced Care savings will be through our estimator tool at the top of this page.

Enhanced Care takes most legal costs out of B.C.’s insurance system – and passes those savings on to you through more affordable and stable rates. In previous years, legal costs were one of the major factors driving rate increases.

Graph comparing average annual premium for B.C. drivers in 2020 and 2021

Enhanced Care coverage will automatically take effect on May 1, 2021, for all British Columbians.

You don’t need to do anything. You will see your full Enhanced Care savings on your first annual renewal after May 1, 2021.

Many British Columbians will also be eligible for a one-time, pro-rated refund for the difference between their current insurance policy and the new, lower-cost Enhanced Care rates for whatever length of time remains on their current insurance policy beyond May 1, 2021.

Customers with ICBC optional third-party liability coverage who renew on or after February 1, 2021, will start seeing some of the savings from Enhanced Care at that time.

Just like how your premiums are determined today, your savings under Enhanced Care will depend on a variety of factors, including:

  • whether you purchased basic insurance only, or basic and optional third-party liability insurance from ICBC

  • how much optional third-party liability coverage you purchased

  • if you had any at-fault crashes since you last renewed

  • the driving experience of you and your listed drivers – including crash history and driving convictions

  • where you live, the type of vehicle you drive, and where and how you use your vehicle.

Factors that affect how much you save

With millions of unique drivers in B.C., savings will vary. On average, customers will save 20 per cent on their full basic and optional coverage with ICBC which translates into average savings of $400 - but some will save more or less than the average dollar savings. For example:

  • Young or inexperienced drivers – For years, these drivers paid higher premiums due to their increased risk of causing a crash, and, in turn, being sued. Enhanced Care removes most legal costs from the system, meaning higher-than-average savings for many young or inexperienced drivers.

  • Motorcyclists, seasonal vehicles, or drivers in many rural areas – Those who drive seasonal vehicles like motorcycles and trailers, or who live in more rural areas of B.C., will see lower-than-average dollar savings. This is because auto insurance is already less expensive for these individuals.

Lower rates example

Here's an example

Some will save more, some will save less

Katie lives in Grand Forks and paid $1,025 for her full basic and optional coverage, while her nephew, Adam, lives in Kelowna and paid $2,780 for his basic and optional coverage at his last renewal.

Amir lives in Surrey with his teenage daughter (who sometimes drives her dad’s vehicle) and currently pays an annual premium of $3,415 for basic and optional coverage. Amir’s neighbour, Franco, insures his motorcycle with basic and optional coverage for a full year, and paid $2,020 on his last renewal.

They have different amounts of driving experience and live in different areas of B.C., but all three currently choose $2 million in optional liability coverage – and all will save under Enhanced Care.

When Katie renews under Enhanced Care, her premium will drop to $800 – a saving of $225 or 22 per cent. Her premium is much lower, primarily because of her location.

Adam lives in Kelowna and has five years of driving experience. When he renews under Enhanced Care, his premiums will drop by $835 or 30 per cent, to under $2,000.

Amir has 30 years of driving experience. He has listed his daughter, who has two years’ experience and one claim, on his policy. When Amir renews under Enhanced Care, his premiums will drop to $2,270 – saving $1,145 or 33 per cent.

Franco has 20 years of crash-free driving experience. When he renews under Enhanced Care, as a motorcyclist he will see lower-than-average savings, paying $1,750 for his annual premium. This is a savings of 13 per cent – in part due to lower basic insurance savings.

Estimated annual savings by level of coverage

One of the biggest factors that affect your savings is whether you purchase optional third-party liability coverage, and what limit of coverage you purchase. Today, approximately 85 per cent of customers purchase this coverage to cover themselves in the unfortunate scenario they injure someone in a crash or cause someone a financial loss and that person starts a lawsuit against them, claiming compensation for things like pain and suffering and future wage loss.

Under Enhanced Care, everyone’s care needs and financial losses are paid directly from their own ICBC coverage, rather than through lawsuits and settlements. Optional third-party liability coverage will still be important, as it will protect you when you drive out of province, for example, and damage someone’s vehicle or cause injury to someone. It will also protect you if you cause non-vehicle damage in B.C. – for example, if you hit a building, fence or other property. But it will be much cheaper because it doesn’t have to cover the expensive costs involved in a litigation-based system. And if you usually purchase one of the higher limits of optional third-party liability coverage – $3 million or $5 million – you will likely see higher-than-average Enhanced Care savings.

When Enhanced Care coverage takes effect on May 1, 2021, ICBC insurance will cost less. That means many British Columbians will be owed a one-time, pro-rated refund.

How will my refund be determined?

Your refund amount is the difference between what you paid when you last renewed your current insurance policy and the new, lower cost of Enhanced Care, for however long your current policy extends past May 1.

Timeline explaining the refund period

For example, if you renewed your annual policy on January 1, 2021, you’d have eight months remaining on your current policy as of May 1. We will refund you the difference between what you paid and the new, lower premium of Enhanced Care, for those eight months.

Refunds for the vast majority of eligible customers will be issued from mid-May through to July 2021 and will be returned to you based on how you paid for your insurance. You do not need to apply to receive it.

  • If you paid for your insurance through the ICBC payment plan, the refund will be in the form of adjustments to your monthly payments, which will now be lower.

  • If you paid by credit card, the refund will be issued to the card you paid with. If your credit card has expired, you will receive a cheque.

  • Otherwise, you will receive a cheque in the mail. If you would like to receive your refund directly into your bank account rather than a cheque, you can set up direct deposit on icbc.com now.

No matter how you get your refund, all customers will receive a letter from ICBC with the details of how it was calculated. You don’t need to do anything. If you are eligible for an Enhanced Care refund, it will be automatically issued to you. Your existing insurance policy remains valid until your renewal date.

Enhanced Care refunds are in addition to COVID-19 rebates, which will be issued in mid-March for eligible customers. Find out more about COVID-19 rebates.

Has your mailing address recently changed? If so, to avoid any issues receiving your refund cheque, please make sure your address with ICBC is up-to-date. Find out how to change your address.

Enhanced Care will make auto insurance in B.C. more affordable and our aim is to keep it that way.

For many years now, rates have had to continually go up to cover the rising claims and legal costs associated with a litigation-based insurance system. By taking most legal costs out of the system, we are able to bring rates down and will work to keep them down.

Our regulator, the B.C. Utilities Commission (BCUC), has approved on an interim basis a 15 per cent decrease in basic insurance rates – our largest basic rate decrease in more than 40 years. These rates will cover the next two years, rather than the typical one year, to help provide stability with basic insurance until at least 2023.

As of February 1, 2021, we’ve also lowered rates for optional third-party liability coverage, with a further decrease coming as of May 1, 2021.

We have also begun building a rate stabilization fund, a kind of “rainy day” fund which, with approval from the BCUC, we can draw from in the future to help mitigate future volatility of insurance rates.

Keeping insurance affordable

Yes. This spring, British Columbians could be eligible to receive two payments, along with lower insurance premiums. You don’t need to do anything to receive them as they will be issued automatically to eligible customers.

Savings timeline

Our estimator tool at the top of the page can show you if you’re eligible for an Enhanced Care refund, however, it does not display COVID-19 rebates.

COVID-19 rebate

The COVID-19 rebate is for customers who had an active policy from April 1, 2020, to September 30, 2020. Because ICBC has seen fewer crashes and lower claim costs due to the pandemic, we want to share the savings with British Columbians. The average rebate amount is $190. Cheques for the COVID-19 rebate will be sent out starting in mid-March 2021. Find out more about the COVID-19 rebate.