Canada Alberta panel recommends no-fault auto insurance to address rising, costly premiums

01:20  30 october  2020
01:20  30 october  2020 Source:   msn.com

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In its broadest sense, no - fault insurance is any type of insurance contract under which the insured party is indemnified by their own insurance company for losses, regardless of the source of the cause of loss. In this sense, it is no different from first-party coverage.

No - fault auto insurance laws require every driver to file a claim with their own insurance company after an accident, regardless of who was at fault. Twelve states and Puerto Rico have no - fault auto insurance laws. Florida, Michigan, New Jersey Pure no - fault addresses several societal concerns

EDMONTON — A government panel is recommending a fundamental overhaul of automobile insurance in Alberta to move away from costly, protracted court fights to a collaborative no-fault model.

a bridge with a city in the background © Provided by The Canadian Press

Chris Daniel, who heads the panel, says the change is critical if auto insurance is to remain sustainable while providing fair and timely care and compensation to those hurt in collisions.

Daniel says it wouldn’t be easy and couldn’t be done overnight.

“A fundamentally reformed automobile insurance system requires significant cultural shift in the attitude and expectation from current practices, participants, and providers,” Daniel told a news conference Thursday.

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Find comprehensive auto coverage that fits your needs with TD Insurance . Get a quick and free If you lease, finance, or own a car in Alberta , types of auto insurance you need to have by law are Regardless of who is at fault , medical and other expenses you are entitled to receive are covered.

No - Fault : New York adopted its no - fault system in 1974, at a time when auto insurance costs were rising rapidly and auto insurance disputes were clogging the courts, causing long delays in the payment of compensation to accident victims. The concept behind no - fault was simple.

Finance Minister Travis Toews said the government wants to hear more from Albertans, health professionals and the insurance industry before committing to change.

“The committee make a compelling recommendation,” said Toews. “(It) would result in transformational change in terms of our automobile insurance system in the province, and we really believe we want to hear from Albertans.”

Toews said a panel will be struck to get feedback on the no-fault proposal by the middle of next year.

Premier Jason Kenney’s United Conservative government has been struggling to rein in premium costs for drivers under Alberta’s privatized insurance approach.

Costs have been rising sharply and Albertans pay the third-highest premiums, on average, in Canada.

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No - fault insurance explained compared to others. List of no - fault states. Under a no - fault insurance system, when you have an accident, your auto insurance provider automatically pays for Florida and Michigan have certainly paid the price (very high premiums ) for no - fault insurance but

Auto insurance in Alberta doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. Alberta insurance providers are required to compare a driver’s car insurance premium (as determined by their fee The province of Alberta uses a no - fault auto insurance system. No - fault insurance does not mean no

The previous NDP government capped global insurance rate increases at five per cent annually for each insurer starting in 2017, but the UCP scrapped the cap last year on the grounds it was capricious and ineffective.

The panel said the rise in insurance costs is tied to higher injury claims paid out under a system characterized by adversarial courtroom conflict, fault-finding, delays, and duelling experts.

The panel’s proposal does not focus on blame and penalties, but rather on getting faster care and compensation for injured parties through arm’s-length adjudication and set benefits.

“Our proposed redesigned model will reduce insurance costs for the majority of consumers in the range of 9.4 and 10 per cent, and (in) the long term will deliver stability in auto insurance pricing,” said panel member Shelley Miller.

There would still be a reckoning for reckless drivers through steeper legal penalties and higher premiums.

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No fault insurance applies to all insured drivers in Ontario. The system applies to all insurance companies and policies. Can I Get Cheap No Fault Auto Insurance ? Alberta uses a variation of the no fault coverage system. Drivers get compensation from their own insurers, but only moderate

Michigan no fault insurance is like no other. Learn what makes MI unique when it comes to no - fault car insurance and the types of collision coverage. If you are moving to the Wolverine State or are a newly-minted driver there, you might be going bonkers trying to understand the auto insurance rules

The panel also found that health outcomes improved for those who had their cases solved under a no-fault model.

Toews introduced a bill Thursday to make interim changes to injury claims while feedback is gathered on the proposed model.

The main change would broaden what constitutes a minor injury. Such injuries are currently capped at $5,200.

The definition of minor injury includes strains, sprains and whiplash that do not cause lasting impairment. The bill aims to broaden that to include any non-lasting injury that arises from those conditions.

NDP critic Jon Carson said the change would further erode the rights of the injured to fair compensation because it would deem lasting and chronic problems such as concussions to be minor.

"This is insulting and in no way reflects the lived experiences of Albertans. A severe concussion can lead to traumatic brain injury and permanent damage," said Carson.

"The insurance industry has been lobbying this for years and today, with the help of Jason Kenney and the UCP, they are getting their wish."

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A no - fault auto insurance policy includes personal injury protection to reimburse for hospital bills and No - fault insurance is most often synonymous with personal injury and is not intended to cover vehicle or Won’t offer coverage for pain and suffering. May drive up statewide insurance premiums .

Uber insurance coverage is significantly below these thresholds. Penny Gusner, senior consumer analyst with Insurance .com, says drivers also ● Uninsured/underinsured motorist: Some states require this coverage. If you're involved in an accident and the other driver is at fault but doesn't have

Celyeste Power with the Insurance Bureau of Canada said the proposal strikes the right balance for industry and drivers. She added that the proposed change to the minor injury definition puts Alberta in line with other jurisdictions.

"The devil is of course always in the details ... but I think it's a good step for Alberta drivers," said Power, the bureau's western vice-president.

Toews said the immediate changes would reduce insurance costs by $120 a vehicle per year. He acknowledged that insurers would not be obligated to pass those savings on to drivers, but suggested market forces in a competitive privatized industry would do the job.

“As cost pressures decrease in a competitive environment, it would be expected that premiums will drop.”

The NDP Opposition is calling for a freeze on auto insurance premiums until 2021. The party notes that Albertans pay $1,632, on average, which is about $300 more than two years ago.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 29, 2020.

Dean Bennett, The Canadian Press

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