Why Does Ontario Pay More for Insurance?
Ontario drivers pay the highest car insurance rates in all of Canada. One of the biggest reasons – fraud. It actually costs more to cover claims in Ontario because the province is overwhelmed by insurance fraud. This is a serious crime and it is costing the province millions each year.
This fraud hurts everyone, and it comes at a price in the form of higher auto insurance premiums for you. The faster fraud can be combated, the faster your premiums on car insurance go down. In short, it is in your best interest to help prevent the fraud.
Ontario government’s anti-fraud task force is working to tighten up the regulations in order to combat the widespread fraud. This includes fraudulent activity at the accident site, tow-truck fees and storage fees, healthcare after the fact and so on.
The government has introduced Bill 15 – Fighting Fraud and Reducing Automobile Insurance Rates Act, 2014, legislation set to address insurance fraud. The problem appears to lie in a few main areas – disputes are taking too long to settle, health treatment costs are soaring and on the scene charges are unregulated (i.e. tow trucks).
An article posted in The Globe and Mail described a benefit to Bill 15:
It would move the dispute resolution system for injured drivers from Ontario’s insurance regulator to an existing tribunal run by the Ministry of the Attorney General. It would also force tow truck operators to get permission from a driver before charging for towing and storage services, post their prices and provide itemized invoices detailing all charges.
So, what can you do? Be vigilant. If you are ever in an accident, always be cautious of referrals made on the site for tow trucks, body shops, paralegals and any health claims. Your first line of defense is to call your insurance provider and ask them for help. Insurance companies are required to provide a statement of the dollar amount for everything from repairs to healthcare treatments as a result of a car accident.
Geico coined the phrase “15 minutes could save you 15% on your car insurance.” The Ontario government is working on Bill 15 – legislation geared to save you up to 15% on your car insurance over two years. It may take some time, but in the end, it will be worth it in dollars saved by you!