Insurance professionals already earn more than new Ontario minimum wage

Published: November 28, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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Ontario recently raised its minimum wage to $15 per hour, a decision that caused some controversy in business sectors. However, the property and casualty insurance industry was untouched by the hike, suggesting most people in the industry already earn above the new minimum wage.

“On this particular issue, we reached out to member companies when the legislation was first proposed, and we were not informed of any concerns,” said the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC). “We do not anticipate that this legislation will affect the operations of our members in any way that is different from other types of businesses.”

The broker association in the province says it has been talking to the liberal government about details of Bill 148, which was passed as the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, last week. Based on a standard 40-hour week for 52 weeks per year, the current minimum wage will give workers a guaranteed $31,200 annual income.

“This new legislation includes equal pay to part-time and temporary workers and an increase to minimum wage, but based on results from a member survey we conducted this summer, we don’t believe it will have any significant impact on brokers,” IBAO CEO Colin Simpson told Canadian Underwriter.

Property and casualty insurance professional brokers will not be affected by the new increase as they currently earn on average $21 per hour, or $43,187 per year. Insurance agents get slightly lower on average, $40,545 per year from $19.50 per hour.

Under the legislation of Bill 148, the minimum wage in Ontario will rise to $14 per hour through 2018 and then $15 from Jan. 1, 2019. The government says the wage will then increase annually depending on the rate of inflation. Bill 148 also introduced the following:

  • The expansion of personal emergency leave to 10 days, with an across-the-board minimum of at least two paid days per year for all workers.
  • Workers will have up to 17 weeks off without the fear of losing their job when a worker or their child has experienced or is threatened with domestic or sexual violence.
  • Vacation time is guaranteed at a minimum of three weeks after five years with a company.