Auto

  • Ontario’s Failed Rate Reduction Strategy

    January 20, 2016 by

    The promise to reduce auto insurance premiums by 15% is a failure.  In August 2013 the Ontario government announced a two-year rate reduction strategy. What has ensued since that announcement has been a series of reforms to bring down the cost of …

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  • Daniel Strigberger

    2015: The Year Before 2016

    January 14, 2016 by

    My recent article in the January 2016 K-W OIAA Bulletin As we look forward to a new year of insurance law excitement, let us reflect on some of the interesting cases and legal developments that impacted the auto insurance industry

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  • Andrew Lo

    Driverless Cars: Canadians Want It, Technology Makers Building It

    January 12, 2016 by

    The results of a survey released by Kanetix.ca last week revealed that one in four Canadians are ready and cannot wait for the arrival of the driverless car. In addition, Canadians felt that driverless cars would improve safety and greatly

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  • insBlogs Auto

    Ontario Moves Forward with Regulating the Towing Industry

    January 9, 2016 by

    Ontario consumers and insurers have had many long-standing complaints about the practices of towing operators.  Back in 2012, the Auto Insurance Anti-FraudTask Force, created by the Minister of Finance, recommended a number of changes regarding th…

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  • insBlogs Auto

    Happy New Year

    December 31, 2015 by

    Thank you for visiting my site throughout the year.Willie Handler

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  • Michael Teitelbaum
    insBlogs Auto Legal

    ONCA addresses defence obligation of insurer of additional insured

    December 22, 2015 by

    In Carneiro v. Durham (Regional Municipality), the Ontario Court of Appeal, in a decision released on December 22nd, 2015, reversed the motion judge’s finding in this “additional insured” case involving winter road maintenance by Miller Maintenance, deciding that the judge

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  • Daniel Strigberger

    Another ONSC Judge Weighs in on PJI, Deductible

    December 16, 2015 by

    Who would have thought a year ago that the Ontario Superior Court would have released five decisions in 2015 dealing with prejudgment interest/deductible issues in motor vehicle accident tort cases? My associate Alexandra Wilkins has been keeping track of this issue

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  • insBlogs Auto

    Government Posts Proposed Changes to DRS Regulations

    December 9, 2015 by

    The Ministry of Finance has posted proposed changes to Insurance Act regulations to provide for the transition the Automobile Insurance Dispute Resolution System from the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) to the Ministry of the Attorney General’s Licence Appeal Tribunal (LAT), and the wind down of disputes filed at FSCO. 

    Proposed amendments include:

     • The last date for submitting applications for mediation, neutral evaluation, or the appointment of an arbitrator to FSCO will be March 31, 2016. 

     • An application for an appeal to the FSCO Director of Arbitrations will only be accepted where the application for the appointment of an arbitrator was received by March 31, 2016. 

     • As well, an applications for a variation or revocation to the FSCO Director of Arbitrations will only be accepted where the application for the appointment of an arbitrator was received by March 31, 2016. 

     • The Office of the Director of Arbitrations will continue to function until all notices of appeal and all applications for variation or revocation have been finally determined. 

     • Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule (SABS) provisions that apply to the dispute resolution process at FSCO will continue to apply, as they read on March 31, 2016, to all applications that were received by FSCO before the transition date but are not finally determined before that date. The SABS will also be amended, where necessary, to apply to applications filed at the LAT on or after April 1, 2016.

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  • insBlogs Auto Technology

    Competition Bureau Supports Ride-Sharing Services

    December 8, 2015 by
    The emergence of Uber and other ride-sharing services has created increased competition for the Canadian taxi industry.  This has created a source of friction for the industry because of what they see is an “uneven playing field.”  Taxi operators are required to follow regulatory rules while ride-sharing services largely operate unregulated.  The Canadian Competition Bureau recently weighed in on the subject.

    The Competition Bureau recently released a study, Modernizing Regulation in The Canadian Taxi Industry, which concluded that the competition in the sector has benefited consumers.  However, there needs to be a balance between increased competition and the need for regulation.

    The taxi industry has operated largely unchanged for decades.  Regulators have created rules to govern price, vehicle safety and insurance requirements.  But the regulatory rules often restrict entry into the sector by limiting the number of taxi licences.  The number of plates usually does not keep up with demand for services which creates artificial scarcity, but also higher prices, poor service and long wait times.

    Ride-sharing companies have changed the landscape by offering consumers lower prices, variable pricing (higher fares when demand is high), shorter wait times, and convenience.  The software application used by ride-sharing companies provides automatic payment and the ability to track the number of vehicles available in the local area.  The software also allows consumers to rate drivers which creates an incentive to provide better service.  Low rated drivers receive fewer ride requests.

    The innovations introduced by Uber and other similar service providers have benefited consumers.  There is a need for updated regulatory rules so that traditional taxi operators can respond to the competition.  But the one aspect not addressed by the Competition Bureau study is the insurance issue. 

    In September 2015, Intact Financial announced plans to work with Uber to create products tailored for the ride-hailing service, after concerns emerged that person auto insurance policies may not cover drivers using their personal vehicles for commercial gain.   In the meantime, Uber claims it has adequate insurance coverage and that every ride on the UberX platform is backed by $5 million of commercial auto insurance, which covers both bodily injuries and property damage stemming from a crash.  However, Alberta government said in July that it had determined the policies do not meet the requirements of the province’s Insurance Act.  It’s all very confusing.  

    Ride-sharing services are here to stay.  Consumers will benefit but only if the regulatory rules and updated and the insurance issues are addressed.

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  • Andrew Lo
    insBlogs Auto Technology

    Autopilot: Driver Education Disrupted

    December 4, 2015 by

    There have been huge changes in technology for the automobile. Evidence of this is the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) where car manufacturers including Ford, Mercedes-Benz and Audi dominated last year’s keynote agenda. They boasted their vision of computers as an

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  • Daniel Strigberger

    Claimant hits grand slam at FSCO hearings

    December 1, 2015 by

    A November 30, 2015 Law Times article titled “Arbitrator orders rare special award against insurer” reports on an unusual FSCO case between Thomas Waldock and his auto insurer. The case not only highlights the constant risks associated with relying on insurer

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  • Peter Morris

    Hold ’em or fold ’em?

    November 27, 2015 by

    Not that buying or selling an insurance brokerage is a game of poker, but I am reminded of the song by Kenny Rogers. ‘You got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em, know when to walk

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  • Patrick Vice

    The Two-edge Sword of Technology: Disrupting the Disruptors

    November 27, 2015 by

    New technology options offer a rich environment of functionality combined with an engaging user experience. This combination can produce intended and unintended consequences. We believe the winners will be those that can plan for the unknown as well as the

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  • Daniel Strigberger
    insBlogs Auto Legal

    ONCA Rejects BC Motor Vehicle Accident Claim

    November 26, 2015 by

    A five-member panel of the Court of Appeal for Ontario has released a new decision dealing with out-of-province accidents and conflict of laws issues. In Forsythe v. Westfall, the claimant appellant was an Ontario resident who was insured under an

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