Wawanesa to remove this auto insurance discount

Published: July 30, 2019

Updated: September 1, 2019

Author: Luke Jones

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Motorists in Canada are awarded auto insurance discounts for various things. However, discounts for drivers with autonomous emergency braking systems installed on their vehicles are slowly fading away.

Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company offers such a discount in Nova Scotia. Specifically, the company gives motorists a 15% auto insurance cut if they have a vehicle with model year 2010 or higher with factory installed autonomous emergency brakes. This discount may not last long as the insurer says it is considering the removal of the benefit for collision and direct compensation property damage (DCPD).

This information comes from a recent Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board (NSURB) ruling. The province’s auto insurance rate regulatory says it has approved a proposal from Wawanesa to change rates and risk classifications for private passenger vehicles.

According to the board, the insurer will maintain its 15% discount for autonomous emergency braking for accident benefits and bodily injury. However, it will be removed for DCPD. Wawanesa cites the rising costs of repairing these braking systems as the reason for the removal of the discount.

For vehicles with autonomous emergency braking, Wawanesa plans to keep the 15% discount in place for bodily injury and accident benefits, but not for collision and DCPD, NSURB noted. This is because the higher cost of repairing parts associated with autonomous emergency braking “erodes the benefits” that those same systems provide in reducing frequency of collision claims, NSURB member Jennifer Nicholson wrote in the decision.

“Wawanesa believes there are benefits from the reduction in the severity of claims for bodily injury and accident benefits that warrant the discount being continued for these coverages,” wrote NSURB minister Jennifer Nicholson.

Motorists who previously had the discount will now likely pay more for their auto insurance as DCPD is mandatory in Nova Scotia and they must purchase it.