IBC urges auto insurance providers to discuss system with new Alberta government

Published: April 27, 2019

Updated: June 3, 2019

Author: Luke Jones

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Following the recent elections in Alberta, auto insurance companies should reach out to the new provincial government. The Insurance Bureau of Canada’s (IBC) CEO says companies should press the need for rule changes in auto insurance system.

“Our campaign for change moves into a new phase with the recent election of the United Conservative Party,” IBC CEO Don Forgeron said during IBC’s annual general meeting this week. “Going forward, we will rely on (IBC member companies) their teams, brokers and other stakeholders to help us share the industry’s messages with the new government. There is much work to be done in Alberta and we are cautiously hopeful.”

The United Conservatives won the election and leader Jason Kenney will become premier of Alberta, replacing the outgoing Democratic Party leader Rachel Notley. During its election campaign, the UCP made no specific promises regarding auto insurance.

However, the outgoing NDP government implemented a 5% cap on auto rate increases.

“The situation is, frankly, dire,” Forgeron said of Alberta during the AGM in Toronto’s financial district. “For every premium dollar, insurers pay out up to $1.29 in claims and operating costs.”

With rate increases capped, insurance companies are losing money in Alberta. IBC wants to increase premiums but not for all users says Celyeste Power, vice president of western region for IBC. Speaking to Canadian Underwriter, Power said the bureau is exploring plans for reducing costs, including the use of telematics.