Do I Need Travel Insurance?
You’ve got your bags packed, passport renewed, and your money exchanged. It’s vacation time! But there’s something you might be missing before you go on your trip.
Most of the time we overlook the benefits of travel insurance because we think it’s an expense we likely won’t need. But accidents can happen anywhere, at any time.
Sure, there’s a chance you could go your entire life without needing to use insurance. But do you really want to risk it if you’re in a car accident abroad and facing an international medical bill for tens of thousands of dollars?
Accidents happen. Being prepared is the only thing we can do. If you’re stuck, a personal injury lawyer can help you negotiate the best settlement to help get on with your life.
No one wants their vacation cut short because of an accident. If you’re in the midst of planning a wonderful winter getaway, regardless of where you’re going, make sure you have travel insurance.
Why Buy Travel Insurance?
Some of us like to enjoy a yearly winter getaway, heading down South to escape the winter weather. For snowbirds, you absolutely need travel insurance to fully protect yourself.
But the reality is that the minute you leave Canada, you’re at risk for an accident. Even if you’re just going shopping over the border for the day, you need to have coverage.
Canadians get medical coverage through the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP). But OHIP coverage is very limited as soon as you leave the country.
Generally, you’ll only get reimbursed for operating room services up to $400 a day and emergency room services up to $200 a day.
When a hospital bill from the United States can run you over $20,000, that’s simply not enough coverage. In Europe, it can cost 200 Euros just to treat an insect bite. At the current exchange rate, that’s almost $300 CAD.
If it’s $300 CAD just to treat an insect bite, imagine what your bill would be if you were seriously injured and had to be in the hospital for an extended period of time.
Without travel insurance, it can also be tricky to negotiate a claim or settlement when your injury is someone else’s fault.
The Benefits of Travel Insurance: Your Coverage
Travel insurance covers significantly large and unexpected expenses. More specifically, foreign hospital visits or medical attention.
Insurance policies work differently. If you end up needing medical services or staying at the hospital in another country, there are 2 common options.
You will either be reimbursed for what you pay up front, or your insurance company will pay your bill up to a certain amount after you get home.
It’s important to note that you need to stay updated on any travel advisories in your vacation destination. If there are, and you choose to travel there, some companies will deny your claim.
Another thing you need to check is your coverage’s policy on pre-existing medical conditions. Some are covered. But some might require package modifications.
Additionally, some policies won’t cover pregnancy-related conditions, so be very careful if you’re traveling while pregnant. If you go ahead with your vacation, and you suddenly go into premature labour, you could be stuck with a massive cost.
Always check over your policy and understand it. Know your coverage. If you don’t know about your specific policy details before you go, you could find yourself in a sticky situation later.
Vacation Accidents Happen
Taking a road trip down through the United States, whether you’re in your own vehicle or a rental car, comes with the risk of a car accident.
Not only that, but there are so many other types of accidents that could happen while you’re on vacation. Many of these could be someone else’s fault.
For example, if you’re traveling to an all inclusive tropical resort, there are many potential injuries you could suffer because of neglectful staff. Areas that aren’t clearly marked, dangerous construction tools, or even a faulty balcony, can cause serious injuries.
Be prepared for emergencies. And always be careful!
How to Deal With Vacation Injuries
The first and most important thing you need to do is make sure you get immediate medical attention.
If you don’t get medical attention right away, you likely won’t get the settlement you’re hoping for. That’s because the longer you let an injury sit, the worse it gets, and it becomes your own fault for letting it get worse.
It’s also much harder to prove that the accident caused that injury. But immediate medical records will show that you made the effort to get treatment.
Yes, you’ll have to cut your vacation short. However, one vacation isn’t worth the rest of your life.
Travel Accident Settlements
When it’s time to hold someone liable for accidents outside of Canada, the rules are a little different.
Some countries have different standards when it comes to accidents and liability. They also have different processes for dealing with lawsuits. This is where it gets tricky.
Use an experienced Toronto personal injury lawyer to help navigate through the confusion of travel insurance accident settlements and claims.
In the meantime, make the most out of your claim by collecting enough evidence and documentation. Take photos, keep your records and hospital documents, and find witnesses who might help your case.
Don’t forget to take immediate action as soon as you’re feeling better. The statute of limitations in Ontario is 2 years, but that doesn’t mean it’s the same where your accident happened.
Conte & Associates Can Help When Travel Accidents Happen
Everyone deserves a nice vacation. At Conte & Associates, we want you to live a happy life. If your vacation is cut short by someone else’s mistake, we want to help you get justice.
Our team of dedicated, caring professionals works out of our Whitby and Vaughan offices. This puts us close to the GTA and the best medical professionals in Ontario. Together, we’ll fight for you to make sure you get the settlement you deserve.
Contact our offices now for a free, no-obligation consultation.