Insurance for new and returning residents
If you’re new to B.C. or are returning after living outside of the province, here’s what you need to know about getting insurance.
Years of driving experience can help to lower your premiums
If you’ve moved to B.C. on or after September 1, 2019, we no longer require a claims history letter from your previous insurance provider. We only require proof of your years of driving experience – how long you’ve held a full driver’s licence.
Driving experience is one of the main factors we look at when determining your insurance premiums. You’ll earn better Basic insurance discounts for each year of driving experience you have. We credit up to 15 years of non-B.C. driving experience.
To prove your driving experience we’ll need a driver’s abstract or letter of experience from the licensing authority that issued your first non-learner driver’s licence. This is also required in order to obtain your full B.C. driver’s licence. Find out what you need to prove your driving experience.
Once you’ve submitted proof of your driving experience, your details will be updated in our system and can be used by your Autoplan broker to help determine your premiums.
If you moved to B.C. before September 1, 2019 and already have your B.C. driver's licence
You don’t need to take any further action; your driving experience will be automatically updated in our records. We’ll credit up to 15 years of driving experience, based on when you turned 17. This will be reflected in your insurance premiums at your next renewal.
If you’re returning to B.C. and got your first driver’s licence here, we already have a record of your driving experience. Just book an appointment to renew or update your licence with your new B.C. address at an ICBC driver licensing office.
New residents with ICBC insurance issued before September 1, 2019
If you came to B.C. before September 1, 2019 and got insurance at that time, you would have been asked to provide a claims history letter from your previous auto insurer. You have up to six months from the time you first purchased your Autoplan insurance to provide this letter to your broker.
The letter needs to contain:
- Insurance company letterhead—not from your broker or agent
- Insurance company contact information
- Date of issue
- Name of principal operator and insured persons of the vehicle being insured with ICBC
- Policy number(s)
- Effective dates of coverage
- Details of any claims, or state clearly that there were no at-fault claims
- Signature of company representative
If the letter isn’t in English, contact an ICBC approved translator to get a translated version. You’ll need to provide both the original and translated versions.
Additional requirements for company-owned vehicle (for policies issued before September 1, 2019)
If you've been driving a company-owned vehicle, you'll need to provide an extra letter:
from your employer confirming the dates when the vehicle was assigned to you for business and pleasure use, or
from yourself or a company representative confirming that you were an owner of the company who had use of the vehicle for business and personal use.