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Insurance Business | 05 Sep 2017, 11:49 AM Agree 0
Provincial auto insurance system is ‘falling apart’ – and brokers need to do something about it
  • Brian | 05 Sep 2017, 03:54 PM Agree 0
    RE: "As long as they’re informed and have the ability to make that choice based on good information, then there’s not too much more we can do."

    Mr. Deutschmann is correct when he says that Ontario motorists need to be properly informed about their auto insurance coverage and the fact that recent cuts to accident benefits is leaving many seriously injured mva victims underinsured. A recent column in the Kitchener Record stated that Ontario auto insurance consumers were "balking" at the notion of "buying up" (from the new "basic package" of coverage).

    But why wouldn't they "balk"? During the run-up to Premier Wynne's latest round of benefit cuts we heard much from the insurance lobby and very little from other stakeholders - including the brokers. The IBC was all over the mainstream press presenting the gutting of accident benefits as a means to provide "consumer choice". The IBC and the insurers didn't say they want to offer Ontario motorists the "choice" to be potentially be underinsured if seriously/catastrophically injured. On the contrary. The IBC said time and again that the new basic package provides an excellent choice offering more than ample coverage for the vast majority of Ontario drivers and passengers.

    So where were the brokers and the plaintiff lawyers when the IBC was salting the mainstream press with insurer-friendly promises? Ontario motorists can be forgiven for "balking" given the sales job they got back when Wynne and her IBC pals were touting this gutted coverage as a "no-brainer" good choice:

    So here's the real question and it is a question Insurance Business ought to put to the IBC and especially to Barb Sulzenko-Lauri: does the IBC continue to stand by its oft-repeated assertion that "the standard package is a very good package that would serve all of the needs that I could possibly anticipate." (see example below)

    The new packages giving consumers more choice will help keep rates down and will not be difficult for the average motorist to figure out, especially if they take the basic package, said Barb Sulzenko-Lauri, the bureau's vice-president of policy development.

    "For the average person, and I consider myself as such, it's a no-brainer," Sulzenko-Laurie said.

    "I think the standard package is a very good package that would serve all of the needs that I could possibly anticipate."
  • Brian | 05 Sep 2017, 08:55 PM Agree 0
    So where are the brokers? Haven't you got anything to say? Do you continue to stand beside your IBC pals in misleading motorists into believing Wynne's stripped down basic package is plenty of coverage? The IBAO has always parroted the IBC's much exaggerated fraud talk used to justify the gutting of benefits. The IBC said (and still says) Ontario's "overly-rich" benefits act as "fraud magnets" and no matter how absurd this statement has become (ON now has the worst benefits in the country)...the IBAO goes along to get along with the IBC and the insurers. In so doing you help hurt the very customers you purport to serve. So - speak up - do you brokers and the IBAO agree with the IBC's "no-brainer" position? Your silence will amount to a tacit "yes". Surely you have the ethical fortitude to finally disagree with the IBC and state clearly that the basic package will leave anyone catastrophically injured under-insured?
  • Rhona | 05 Sep 2017, 09:44 PM Agree 0
    At some point Ontario government has to fix this mess, we do not have coverage that we can count on when insurers are turning down so many claims and downloading their costs to the public support systems. Consumers have no idea that if they are seriously or catastrophically injured that they will likely end up on welfare or ODSP or CPP Disability. If we cause an accident, we are impoverishing an innocent person and will have caused them harm in ways we could not imagine since most of us believe that their needs will be met by the insurers we are paying an exorbitant amount of money to every year. Maybe Ms. Sulzenko-Laurie believes that she can live a quality life on $400/wk that is the basic package most of us have purchased, but most individuals would have a problem paying their mortgage and would be financially ruined if injured. It's a dis-service to consumers to pretend otherwise and calling cuts 'choices' is dishonest marketing. A big part of the problem with Ontario insurance is that coverage turns out to be an empty promise to too many accident victims who find out too late. It's about what we get for the money and for too many injured people, that's a big fat zero too often. That's what brokers are selling us.
  • Steve | 07 Sep 2017, 10:37 AM Agree 0
    I have reviewed the accident benefits schedule with every one of my insureds, and there may be a few questions to ask people that brokers many brokers may be missing, for example "would $400 a week be sufficient should you be unable to work?"

    its also worth noting that these benefits have always been last responders, meaning that any kind of health and disability coverages that you may have in place for yourself, or in place through your work will respond first, and your accident benefits will only pick up the tab for what is left. This certainly leaves some people more exposed then others, and the brokers job is to inform and educate, ultimately most insureds are more concerned with saving the 60 dollars a year than they are with adequate coverages. I am not saying that brokers are necessarily doing enough, or that there are people out there who aren't sufficiently covered, but as a broker I can only make recommendations and I am not a Life agent so I am not privy to their health insurance policies, that part falls on the insured to know what they are covered for and where the holes in their health insurance are

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