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Legalization of Cannabis and Insurance

Auto Insurance

By Samantha Lemna | January 2, 2019

The legalization of cannabis brings big change to Canadians. Do you know how your insurance is affected by legalization and your personal cannabis consumption and production? It’s important to note that just likeany violation of your policy a violation of the terms relating to cannabis growth and production can result in a lack of coverage in the event of a claim or even a cancelled insurance policy. This article provides a general overview on how cannabis legalization impacts home and car insurance policies. However be sure youread your own policy documentsand talk to your broker and insurance company to get a better understanding of the specifics of your policy.

Your Home Insurance and Cannabis

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Did you grow cannabis in your home previous to legalization?

  • Do you operate a cannabis-related home-business?

  • Do you own or live in a rental property?

  • Do you have previous convictions or pending charges related to drugs or violence?

If you answered yes to any of the above your home insurance may be affected if you grow cannabis.

Prior to October 17 2018 many insurance companies would not cover damages as a result of or related to cannabis use or growth. Since legalization insurance companies have updated their policies.

Keep in mind that growing or possessing cannabis in quantities greater or under any conditions not permitted by law can result in claims related to or resulting from cannabis potentially not being covered by your home insurance.

It’s important totalk to your insurance brokerabout your cannabis use and growth plans as each insurance company has handled legalization differently. For example some require to be informed of any cannabis growing operations even if it’s for medicinal or recreational purposes. In any event you will see questions about cannabis on home insurance applications going forward.

Your Car Insurance and Cannabis

If you drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol you are driving impaired. Like the government insurance companies consider driving while under the influence of cannabis (over the legal limit) is driving while impaired . This means it will be treated the same as if you were driving under the influence of alcohol.

Penalties for driving while impaired by cannabis include fines license suspensions criminal charges and jail time.

Being convicted of drug-impaired driving will impact your car insurance. This could be through an increase to your premiums or depending on the nature and number of convictions limit or prohibit your ability to be insured.  You can find out more about how cannabisaffects your driving and car insurance here.

Talk to Your Broker About Cannabis

We recommendtalking to your brokerabout how growing cannabis affects your personal insurance. While all insurance companies are updating their policies to reflect legalization it is still in the early days and each company is addressing cannabis in its own way. It’s important to understand your policy!

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