Ontario’s extended coverage has not taken off warns survey

Published: August 28, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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Extended coverage in Ontario is a dead end. Designed to give consumers added choice in their coverage through lost income, liability, and medical protection. However, only one in 10 Ontarian drivers have bought extended coverage, according to research from Kitchener.

The results add fuel to calls for the liberal government to overhaul the auto insurance market in Ontario. Kathleen Wynne’s government is already under pressure to reform insurance after the David Marshall report.

Marshall became the advisor or auto insurance and pensions in February 2016. Providing advice and recommendations to governing and regulatory bodies in an effort to reduce auto insurance costs in Ontario, while the role also involves him overseeing the roll out of the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP). He worked as a direct advisor to Ontario finance minister Charles Sousa.

The research out of Kitchener shows that the insurance extended coverage reform introduced in 2010 and updated in 2016 has been unsuccessful. Extended coverage was supposed to bring rates down as drivers could opt for basic coverage or pay more for added benefits. Metroline Research Group surveyed 800 drivers under commission from Deutschmann and found that once reduced basic insurance was introduced:

•Only seven per cent of the population purchased extended liability coverage.

•Six per cent purchased extra medical coverage.

•Two per cent purchased extra income benefits.

Rob Deutschmann says consumers have not embraced extended coverage, but they should:

"The cost for optional coverage is not that expensive for the benefit it can provide you," he said.

"I think the brokers need to do a better job advising. The government also needs to do a better job of advertising," he added.