NewsBytes : For 1st June 2019

One of our own HomeLink members “John” has generously shared with us some of his recent correspondence with an agent at ICBC (Insurance Corporation of British Columbia), in which he requests guidance regarding vehicle coverage for his upcoming home exchanges.
We invite similar accounts from any of you in other provinces, to assist other members in their exchange arrangements..

From “John” to ICBC : Insurance Corporation of British Columbia


Since we moved to BC in 20–, my wife and I have placed all of our vehicle
insurance with ICBC and now have several questions.  We have joined
Homelink and are planning to do two home and car exchanges next year (one
for two months in New Zealand and one for a month in the UK).  We may also
do one this year. I have a number of insurance questions as follows:

1. Will the person(s) driving my vehicle (while I drive theirs) be
adequately covered if they happen to cause damage to my or any other
vehicle or injure anyone and would I be covered should I cause any damage
or injury while driving theirs.  These folks, like my wife and I are
retired seniors. Because we live in a 55+ strata, we could not do an
exchange with any couple unless at least one of them is 55+.  We would
both be using the other folks’ vehicle for pleasure.

2. I have been driving for almost 60 years and have never been in an
accident.  As a result I have a maximum safe driver discount.  Would any
claim involving my vehicle or theirs affect this discount>

3. Are there any other issues that I should be aware of?


Hello “John”,

Currently in BC, ICBC allows registered owners of vehicles to lend the vehicle to another party to use. We do not require them to be listed on the policy. The registered owner(s) need to ensure that the person who is going to be driving the vehicle has a valid Driver’s License and has verbal permission to use the vehicle (we recommend you provide something in writing to the other party in case they use the vehicle in another province or in the US). If the other party is involved in a at fault claim, this will affect your insurance discount/level.

Because there could be a monetary gain as a result of this swap, we recommend removing the Senior rate class on your vehicle and changing it to whatever best suits the circumstance. Please have this discussion with your broker.

Also ICBC coverage is only valid in the US and Canada. You will need to take out separate insurance (not sold by ICBC) when you are in UK and NZ.


“D. Smith”
ICBC Customer Contact agent

Second letter from “John” to ICBC Customer Contact agent

Dear Sir,

Thank you so much for your prompt reply.  I have just a few more
supplemental questions.

Could I specify in the document setting out the permission to drive my
vehicle that the borrowing driver has to pay for the costs of any damage
to my or any other vehicle so as not to result in any claims in order for
me to not lose my discount level?  If so, I guess that person might wish
the same thing for his vehicle in order to protect whatever discount level
that person might have.

I am not aware of me being in a “senior rate class”.  What is this?  Does
it mean that I pay more or less for my insurance because I am a senior?
How is “senior” defined?  The person using my vehicle would be  55+ I
believe but I will check.  At least one of the couple has to be 55+ to be
able to occupy our home as it is a 55+ gated community.

As for coverage of me while driving the other person’s car in the UK or
New Zealand, would I not be covered by the owner’s insurance on the same
basis as they would be covered when driving my vehicle here in BC?

I note that you begin by saying “currently in BC”.  I have read that there
is some consideration being given in ICBC to requiring anyone using
another person’s vehicle to be listed on the owner’s policy for which
there would be a fee.  When might this come into force?

Thank you for your further assistance in this matter.

Best regards,


Hi “John”

In terms of a document that you would draft up, the terms listed in it would be between the 2 parties. But it would not move the liability to the party who is borrowing your vehicle. If an at-fault claim occurs while they are using your vehicle, you could discuss an arrangement between yourselves to repay the claim to ICBC so it doesn’t affect you (most claims are repayable but there are restrictions, I suggest you call us to get more info about this).

To qualify for the senior rate class, the vehicle must be owned or leased to an individual over 65 and is using their vehicle for pleasure use only. The registered owner must make this declaration at a broker office to have it added. It gives you a discount on the basic insurance. Drivers less than 65 years of age may operate the vehicle rated in a senior rate class, provided it is for pleasure use only. Your plate number currently has a senior rate class.

As for coverage, you will have to check with the other party to see if their insurance will cover you while you operating their vehicle.

There are changes that will be coming into effect as of Sep 1, 2019. One of those changes is requiring all drivers be listed on a policy or the customer taking out an ‘Unlisted driver protection’ starting at a $50 premium. Currently we do not require additional drivers to be listed.

Should you have any further questions, please contact our Insurance Customer Service Department at: 604-661-2800 or 1-800-663-3051. Hours of operation are 8:00am (PT) to 6:00pm (PT) Monday to Friday, or 9:00am (PT) to 5:00pm (PT) on Saturdays.

“D. Smith” ICBC Customer Contact agent

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Welcome to the wonderful world of home exchange!
Welcome to HomeLink … we’ll be thrilled to have you stay with us!

Jack Graber
Past-President (Ret), HomeLink International (Brussels)
1707 Platt Crescent, North Vancouver BC V7J 1X9
Tel : 604-987-3262

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