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Are you looking for financial relief and help understanding what insurance companies are doing to support customers during COVID-19 crisis? We have the answers.
As a result of the COVID-19 crisis, many insurance companies such as Aviva, Intact¸ Travelers, Economical, Pembridge, Pafco, Wawanesa, RSA, and CAA (members of the Insurance Bureau of Canada) have stated their willingness to help consumers at this difficult time. These are the companies that set the rates and define the insurance products that brokers like Munn can provide to customers.
On April 8th, the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) announced that the industry was making changes to help Canadians cope with the financial impact of COVID-19 including substantial financial relief measures. There are many different solutions being discussed and some differ from one insurance provider to another. That can be confusing. But we can help.
We have reviewed the programs and promises from each insurance company and have had discussions with our many insurance markets to understand how they are stepping up to help consumers at this time.
Here is a summary of the programs that are in place to help you currently:
- Lower premium if you are driving less: For some consumers whose driving habits have changed significantly, certain insurance companies are offering reductions in auto insurance premiums to reflect this reduced risk. If you had indicated having a low annual driving usage and had to drive short distances to work when you originally purchased your policy, you may not benefit from this change.
- Lower premium if you have stopped driving: Customers who have stopped driving entirely can reduce their auto insurance premiums with some insurance companies. This is an example of reducing coverage on your policy and this could help you reduce your premium.
- Deferred premiums: Customers who are experiencing financial stress due to COVID-19 can call their broker to defer their insurance premium for up to 90 days without additional fee or penalty with certain insurance markets. Payment of the deferred premiums will be required following the deferral period.
- Freezing premium increases at renewal: While several insurance markets have filed for and have been permitted rate increases in 2020, some insurance markets are freezing any additional and future premium increases after a certain date. If applicable, this would apply to renewals processed after a certain date upon approval from the regulator in each province. Customers who have had significant claims losses or traffic violations may not be eligible for this benefit.
- Flexible payment options: Certain insurance companies have committed to explore flexible payment options on renewals for consumers who are in a vulnerable position or facing financial hardship because of COVID-19. Insurance companies may not apply these payment options on new business sales.
- Waiving fees: Several insurance companies have agreed to waive certain fees and charges (i.e. non-sufficient funds also known as an NSF fee). Customers would however remain responsible for any NSF fees your bank may charge you.
- Flexible coverage: If you are temporarily using your car or home differently (for example, you may be using your car to commute to work instead of taking public transit, or you may be working from home) it will not affect your premium or your ability to make a claim.
We understand this is a difficult time for individuals, families and businesses. Our priority is to be here to help you in this time of uncertainty. The options provided by each insurance company are slightly different. If you need help understanding how to take advantage of the programs being offered or would like a quote to compare with your current policy, please contact Munn Insurance at 855-726-8627 We’re here to help!