What is the OPCF 27?
Before we explain the OPCF 27, we will first explain how the standard automobile insurance policy is designed. All vehicle owners are required to have a standard automobile insurance policy. This makes up the base of the insurance. This includes coverage for third party liability, accident benefits, direct compensation, and uninsured automobile. The next part is the optional physical damage coverage for your automobile. The options are All Perils, Collision, Comprehensive or Specified Perils. If you would like to modify your standard policy or optional physical damage coverage, you may do this with endorsement forms. In Ontario, endorsement forms are called Ontario Policy Change Forms, known as an OPCF. Each OPCF has a corresponding number to represent the purpose of the change form.
In this article we will explain the OPCF 27. The name of the form is called Legal Liability for Damage to Non-Owned Automobiles Endorsement. The purpose of the change form is to provide the ability to use your optional physical damage coverage on a vehicle you do not own. Typically, most people use the OPCF 27 when renting a car and do not want to pay the daily insurance rate through the rental company. But it could also be used on non-rental vehicles you borrow and do not own.
For the OPCF 27 fine print details you can download the form here. Continue reading this article to understand situations you may want to consider using the OPCF 27.
Why consider purchasing daily insurance from the rental car company?
There are pros and cons you will need to consider when buying daily insurance from a car rental company. Generally speaking, the cost for daily insurance is high and the coverage you are purchasing can seem unclear if you do not read the fine print. For example, some daily rental car insurance agreements do not cover damage to the windshield. Before making any insurance purchase from the rental car company, make sure there is clear documentation on how the coverage will respond. Review the limits, exclusions, and the deductible you are responsible for.
Some car rental companies offer transparent worry free insurance coverage. If you were involved in an accident, in most cases the car rental car company will pick up the damaged vehicle and provide you with a replacement rental car. Depending on the severity of the damages, you could be back on the road within minutes – like nothing ever happen.
When should I consider using the OPCF 27?
You have the option to use the OPCF 27 instead of paying for the daily insurance on the car rental. However, make sure to double check that this endorsement is on your policy. Using the OPCF 27 will save you some money, but in the event of loss or damage you will need to make a claim against your insurance policy.
Items to consider when using OPCF27 when renting a car:
- Coverage only applies to the drivers listed on your policy.
- Coverage limit for damage to the non-owned vehicle might not be adequate. Sometimes the limit is $50,000. There is often an option to purchase higher limits.
- The coverage applies only to an automobile of 4500 kilograms or less (gross vehicle weight).
- Coverage is limited to Canada and the United States.
- For periods of not more than 30 consecutive days.
Why consider using Rental Car Insurance on your Credit Card?
Often this is coverage built into high-end credit cards. If the coverage is comprehensive enough for your needs it’s worth considering. However, double check with your credit card issuing company to see what type of rental car insurance coverage you have. Ask for the fine print to make sure you understand the deductible, limits and exclusions. There is a good possibility that the rental car insurance on your credit card might have limitations. Make sure to fully understand the details.
Temporary Substitute Automobile
If you meet the insurance contract criteria for a Temporary Substitute Automobile, you will have the ability to use your standard policy and optional physical damage coverage to another vehicle you do not own. This is different than the conditions of the OPCF 27 because under a Temporary Substitute Automobile, your insured vehicle cannot be in use due to it being out of service.
To be specific on the criteria, here is the actual Ontario Automobile Policy (OAP1) contract wording under Section 2.2.2, Temporary Substitute Automobile:
A temporary substitute automobile is an automobile that is temporarily used while a described automobile is out of service. The described automobile must not be in use by anyone insured by this policy, because of its breakdown, repair, servicing, theft, sale or destruction. Coverage for a temporary substitute automobile is provided under the automobile policy of the owner of the temporary substitute automobile. However, this policy may also provide coverage. The following coverages apply to a temporary substitute automobile if a premium is shown for them on the Certificate of Automobile Insurance for the described automobile that is temporarily out of service:
- Accident Benefits,
- Uninsured Automobile, and
- Direct Compensation – Property Damage
If you have purchased optional Loss or Damage Coverages on a described automobile and it is temporarily out of service, there are special conditions about this coverage for temporary substitute automobiles. These conditions are explained in Section 7 – Loss or Damage Coverages of this policy.
Special Condition: A temporary substitute automobile cannot be owned by you or by anyone living in the same dwelling as you.
Common examples are when you’re involved in a car accident and your car cannot be used due to the damages or when your car is in for service. If your insured car is not in use because it is out of service, your insurance policy will provide coverage to a car that you borrow (a car that is not owned by you). In these examples you do not need to use the OPCF 27 or purchase the insurance from the rental car company.
This article is intended to bring possible scenarios to your attention and not intended to help you make insurance decisions on your own. Before making any insurance decisions you should consult with Highcourt Breckles. Insurance policies are unique to each individual circumstance and coverage will have variations.
Non Ontario drivers will have similar policy change forms. For non Quebec drivers the endorsement form is SEF 27 and Quebec it is called QEF 27. Please consult with your insurance broker to make sure you have the right insurance coverage.