The standard non-owned automobile policy (the SPF 61)
is an independent stand-alone commercial coverage. It is usually
part of a package of liability coverages. In fact, some insurers
issue the SPF 6 as an endorsement to their CGL (Comprehensive
General Liabiliy) policy2. It is rarely issued
separately as a stand-alone policy.
In a nutshell, the SPF 6 provides liability coverage for
accidents involving so-called non-owned vehicles. The most common
situation where this policy would respond involves claims against
employers for the negligent operation of vehicles the employer does
not own by employees. The named insured is liable for the
employee's negligence through the doctrine of respondeat
superior (vicarious liability) and it is the SPF 6 policy
which provides the named insured with coverage for this common law
liability. However, as we will see later the coverage grant in the SPF 6 is
broad enough to provide coverage in other situations as well. In
addition to providing coverage for the named insured the policy
provides coverage to drivers and lessees of such vehicles in some
In this paper I will comment on the issues that can arise with
respect to the application of the SPF 6 to a number of commonly
encountered situations. I will discuss the various endorsements
that can be added to the SPF 6 and how they may restrict or augment
coverage. Finally, I will comment on the priority of this policy in
relation to other automobile liability policies.
1 Standard Policy Form 6. This is actually a very
old form and thus its SPF designation. Policy forms that have been
drafted specifically for the Ontario market and approved by the
Financial Services Commission of Ontario are designated as OAP
(Ontario Automobile Policy) forms.
2 In my opinion, this is inappropriate as this can create
conflicts between the definitions in the CGL and SPF 6 policies.
This, in turn, can lead to coverage being extended in unintended
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guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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