Death and funeral benefits following a motor vehicle collision

PDF download is not available for Arabic and Urdu languages at this time. Please use the browser print function instead

Death benefits are payable to families to help with the cost of funerals after a motor vehicle collision. Learn about accessing death and funeral benefits in Ontario.

Key points

  • In the province of Ontario, the family of the deceased can claim for death and funeral benefits.
  • Most hospitals have someone, such as a social worker, who can help you fill out the forms and get the right certificates you will need.

This page is about getting death and funeral benefits after a motor vehicle collision in Ontario. This process is different from province to province, from state to state and country to country. The information here outlines the major issues and processes involved.

This is a difficult time for families and applying for death and funeral benefits may be an additional stress. Staff at the hospital can help connect you with social workers who can provide support for you and your family.

What are death and funeral benefits?

Death and funeral benefits are available regardless of who is at fault. A death and funeral benefits claim does not affect your insurance rates.

The death and funeral benefit is divided into two payment types.

  • Death benefits are paid as a lump sum, depending on familial relationship (if the person killed was your dependent, spouse etc.) and the details of the insurance policy.
  • Funeral benefits are provided as a reimbursement for accrued expenses (i.e., you pay for the funeral and then the insurance company pays you back).

You will probably have a lot of questions. They can best be answered by talking to your insurance adjuster. You must call the vehicle insurer to tell them that you want to apply for death and funeral benefits. You should call the insurer as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the accident, with some exceptions.

Death benefits must generally be paid within 180 days of the accident, with some exceptions. For more information, see the regulations link at in the Resources section below.

Getting help at the hospital

Most hospitals have a social worker who is trained to help with insurance matters for patients who die in a car crash. Ask hospital staff who this person is and ask about getting their help filling out the forms and certificates that you will need to make a claim.

Calling the insurers

Call the first insurer on the list below that applies to you:

  • the insurer of the child's parent/guardian's vehicle
  • the insurer of the vehicle in which the deceased child was an occupant
  • the insurer of the at-fault driver or owner
  • the insurer of any other vehicle involved in the accident
  • the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund: in Canada, call 1-800-268-7188

The insurer will ask you for some basic information, including the following:

  • name and age of the deceased child
  • your insurance policy number
  • vehicle information
  • basic details about the crash

Once you have talked with the insurer, they will send you an application for Death and Funeral Benefits (OCF-4). An adjuster will be assigned to your file. The adjuster will call you with a claim number and will be your main contact at the insurance company.

Getting a lawyer

Because insurance can be hard to understand, some families may want to ask a lawyer to help them decide what to do. A lawyer who knows personal injury laws involving children is the best person to help you with your death and funeral benefits claim. Most lawyers will talk with you, free of charge, the first time you call. There are limitation periods on filing a claim for injuries/death; in most cases it is within two years of the accident, but there are some exceptions. Families can also contact the Law Society of Ontario’s free referral service to speak to a lawyer for 30 minutes at no charge: Law Society Referral Service

For your reference

Date of accident:

Insurance company name:

Telephone number:

Policy number:

Accident benefits adjuster name:

Telephone number:

Claim number:

Investigating police officer name:

Badge number: Region/Division: Telephone number:

Lawyer name:


Telephone number:


Last updated: March 21st 2023