Personal injury lawyer says Alberta's survey on no-fault auto insurance is biased

Lawyer is concerned that the general public does not fully understand what a no-fault auto insurance system would mean

Personal injury lawyer says Alberta's survey on no-fault auto insurance is biased

Motor & Fleet

By Lyle Adriano

The government of Alberta, in February, launched an online poll to gauge public opinion on how to address the province’s high auto insurance rates, but one lawyer believes the survey’s questions are seemingly pushing for “no-fault” auto insurance.

“It does seem to me like there might be bias in the survey toward a no-fault outcome,” Fred Litwiniuk, a Calgary-based lawyer, told CBC News. “And I think that there’s maybe not a lot of understanding among the general public about what that really means.”

Litwiniuk also remarked that there is more to no-fault insurance than just lowering rates.

“The promise of lower insurance rates sounds really enticing to a lot of people, especially in tough economic times when people are struggling,” the lawyer stated. “But the question is, what rights are we being asked to give up in order to get those lower rates?”

The lawyer offered a reminder that a no-fault system will take away a person’s right to sue. The system will also determine what parties owe, or what they could be compensated.

“The issue is, you’ve got insurance companies on the one side, they’re a self-interested party, and insurance lawyers ... on the other side, frankly, are also self-interested parties. So, who’s looking out for the injured person?” Litwiniuk said.

The provincial government’s survey closed March 06, and a committee is currently reviewing the feedback. The committee will deliver its final report and recommendations to the president of the Treasury Board and Minister of Finance in June 2020.

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