belairdirect busts a move with unexpected events in new advertising campaign

When the unexpected happens, belairdirect is there to ensure all is forgiven in its latest advertising campaign. In a continuation of its cinematic platform for showcasing unique products and customer offerings, belairdirect surprises the audience.

belairdirect busts a move with unexpected events in a new advertising campaign


In the latest campaign titled “The Gangs”, a scene unfolds with dancers in the street having what appears to be a dance-off. Out of nowhere, a car narrowly misses the group of dancers and unintentionally drives into a house. Capturing the attention of the neighbourhood, a brief back-and-forth occurs between the driver and homeowner, but the tension lifts when the crowd learns about belairdirect’s forgiveness products.

Building on the success of a storytelling-driven approach to ad campaigns, this new ad remains light-hearted, colourful and playful while focusing on belairdirect’s claim forgiveness products for home and auto policies. belairdirect understands that unexpected events can happen that are out of the customer’s control. With Home Claim Forgiveness and Accident Forgiveness your premium is protected.

“We had a lot of fun producing belairdirect’s latest campaign. With the success of our storytelling platform, our ad creates ‘ah-ha’ moments for the audience. Proving to resonate with customers, this campaign continues on with an amusing moment without being overly promotional,” said Humberto Valencia, Vice President Marketing & Digital Strategy at belairdirect. “Insurance provides peace of mind and this is why it is the focal point of our new campaign.”

This 360° campaign includes TV, online videos, radio, digital, billboards and social elements and will be predominately seen in Quebec, Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia starting March 9, 2020.

To view the full commercial, please visit:

The Gangs
belairdirect – Humberto Valencia, Evelyne Lepage, Marie-Claude Filion, Emilie Bélanger
Sid Lee Toronto
Production House: 
The Bobbsey Twins from Homicide
Saints Editorial, Embassy vfx, Fort York vfx, Alter Ego
PHD Montréal

About belairdirect

Founded in Quebec in 1955, belairdirect provides car and home insurance products directly to consumers. It currently employs more than 1,600 people. The company offers a simple but complete solution, allowing customers to communicate with an agent by phone, online or in person. belairdirect was the first property and casualty insurer in North America to sell car insurance products online (, attesting to the company’s innovative character. belairdirect is a subsidiary of Intact Financial Corporation, the largest provider of property and casualty insurance in Canada and a leading provider of specialty insurance in North America (TSX : belairdirect is a proud partner of Breakfast Club of Canada. For more information, please visit or follow belairdirect on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

SOURCE belairdirect

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Cowan Insurance Group Awarded Platinum Status by Canada’s Best Managed Companies

Press Release:

Cambridge, ON – March 5, 2020 – Cowan Insurance Group, a leading Canadian insurance brokerage and consulting firm, was recognized for the eighth consecutive year by prestigious Canada’s Best Managed Companies program, earning Platinum Club status, for a second straight year.

Now in its 27th year, Canada’s Best Managed Companies is one of the country’s leading business awards programs recognizing Canadian-owned and managed companies for innovative, world-class business practices.

Cowan has proven itself as a market leader in commercial and personal insurance, group benefits, and wealth management through its client-centric approach to doing business and commitment to innovation and excellence.

“Best Managed Platinum Club winners are resilient. They have been consistent in successfully adapting to change throughout the years and overcoming economic challenges. These companies truly impact how Canada is viewed on the world stage when it comes to the success of private business,” said Kari Lockhart, Partner, Deloitte Private and Co-Leader, Canada’s Best Managed Companies program.

Applicants are evaluated by an independent judging panel comprised of representatives from program sponsors, in addition to special guest judges. 2020 Best Managed companies share commonalities that include a clear and concise strategy, and investment in resources and development with a strong emphasis on corporate social responsibility.

“Attaining Platinum status for a second consecutive year is a testament to our employees who continually go the extra mile and deliver excellence,” said Heather McLachlin, President of Cowan Insurance Group. “We care about what you care about is more than simply our tagline, it’s how we do business. Our clients are at the centre of all that we do.”

Winners will be recognized at the annual Canada’s Best Managed Companies gala in Toronto on April 1, 2020.

The Best Managed program is sponsored by Deloitte Private, CIBC, Canadian Business, Smith School of Business, and TMX Group.

Source: Cowan Insurance Group

Canada’s largest airlines waiving fees to change flights because of coronavirus

By Ross Marowits


TORONTO _ Canada’s largest airlines are waiving change fees in light of concerns about the novel coronavirus.

Air Canada says a one-time change is permitted for tickets purchased from the airline between March 4 and March 31 for travel within 12 months.

It also applies to Aeroplan flight reward bookings and Air Canada Vacations has implemented flexible booking policies.

WestJet Airlines Ltd. says the one-time change fee waiver applies to new bookings made between March 5 and March 31.

Air Transat has two policies, including one that applies to Venice, a hot spot for the virus called COVID-19. All customers who booked flights on or before March 2 for travel until June 30 can change their date or destination for a trip until Oct. 31.

Other passengers travelling outside the eco budget fare class can change their travel dates, destination or hotel at no charge for bookings made between March 4 and March 31 for travel through Oct. 31.

“Although almost all of our destinations are very safe and the government of Canada’s advisories currently affect only one of our destinations located in northern Italy, we are aware that the outbreak and progression of the coronavirus may raise questions and even concerns among some travellers,” Transat said in a news release.

“The situation is evolving rapidly, and in order to reassure travellers and enable our clients to carry out their travel plans, we are offering them peace of mind by deploying a highly advantageous flexibility policy.”

Most airlines will waive the fee for changes made at least 14 days before travel. However, Transat passengers can change their booking up to 24 hours before departure.

All airlines require passengers to pay any fare difference between the original and new flights.

Sunwing says its destinations have not been impacted to date but its waiver applies to all new bookings made March 4-19 for flights until June 24.

Sunwing passengers can purchase insurance starting at $50 per person that provides full cancellation coverage up until three hours before departure for any reason.

Grouse Mountain Waiver Fails To Protect After Snowboarder Paralyzed

Today’s post is from BC injury claims lawyer Erik Magraken.

Reasons for judgement were published this week by the BC Court of Appeal finding purported waivers of liability to be of no force and effect.

In this week’s case (Apps v. Grouse Mountain Resorts Ltd) the Plaintiff suffered a significant spinal injury at the C4/5 level, and  was rendered quadriplegic while snowboarding the Defendant’s resort.  He sued for damages but at trial the claim was dismissed with the Court finding posted waivers of liability prevented the claim.

The BC Court of Appeal overturned the result finding the posted waiver signs were not adequate.  In reaching this conclusion BC’s highest court provided the following reasons:

[3]             Mr. Apps’ appeal raises an issue that has troubled the courts ever since the Industrial Revolution: under what circumstances is such a waiver in a contract of adhesion (where the consumer must take it or leave it) binding on the consumer?  This has been of particular concern where the waiver includes words excluding liability for the service provider’s own negligence and failures (an “own negligence” clause).

[4]             I note parenthetically that in the Internet age, contracts of adhesion have become the electronic norm, and consumers routinely click on digital buttons confirming their acceptance of terms and conditions they have neither read nor understood.  Here, however, Mr. Apps did not click on any buttons or sign any forms.  What, then, was done to bring the relevant terms of the waiver to his attention is key…

[57]         In the absence of a ski hill exception, it follows that only the steps Grouse Mountain took before and at the time of the issuance of the ticket can be taken into account in assessing whether Grouse Mountain took sufficient steps to give reasonable notice to Mr. Apps of the terms of its waiver, and in particular of the inclusion of the own negligence clause.

[58]         What was said on the signs at the entrance to the Terrain Park is relevant only to the question of whether it gave reasonable notice of the risks of using that park, a question that is not before us.  By the time Mr. Apps arrived at the Terrain Park, he had paid for his non-refundable ticket, taken the lift up the mountain, and had begun snowboarding.  It was far too late to give notice of what was in the waiver.  That had to be done at or before the ticket booth.

[59]         Once we take the “clear and easy to read” signs at the Terrain Park out of the equation, as we must, we are left with the trial judge’s unequivocal findings at paras 36–38 and 47:

·       The sign at the ticket booth was “difficult to read”;

·       The own negligence exclusion was “not highlighted or emphasized in any way”, but was buried in small print among many commas and semi-colons;

·       “It is unrealistic to believe that a person approaching the ticket booth would stop in front of the window to read the sign.”

[60]         These findings of fact distinguish this case from cases such as McQuary, and Fillingham v Big White Ski Resort Limited, 2017 BCSC 1702, where Madam Justice Adair found the sign in question to be large, highly visible, and posted at all ticket locations.

[61]         Grouse Mountain argues that, notwithstanding these findings, the judge nevertheless observed that the heading at the top of the notice was easy to read.  Grouse Mountain asserts that this was all that was required to put Mr. Apps on notice that his ticket included an exclusion of liability that he should read.  As Blair J. said of the plaintiff in McQuary at para 21, “The defendant succeeded in bringing the exclusion of liability conditions to the plaintiff’s attention. It could not force him to read them.”

[62]         But in the circumstances of this case, this submission begs the question of what it was that had to be brought to Mr. Apps’ attention.  At para 31 of her reasons, the judge rightly recognized a waiver of an occupier’s own negligence as “among the most onerous of clauses”, and that “The more onerous the exclusion clause the more explicit the notice must be”.  It does not follow that because there may have been adequate notice that something in the contract limited one’s rights, enough had been done to bring to the consumer’s attention the fact that the contract included a clause so onerous as to exclude liability for the service provider’s own negligence.

[63]         It is in this context that we must assess the reasonableness of Grouse Mountain’s actions.

[64]         In the Mile case, the plaintiff who attended a Club Med resort was aware that the brochure he reviewed contained an exclusionary clause, but had not read it.  The court noted that in words that were not in small print or hidden in any way from even the casual reader, the resort provided that it “shall not be liable, for any injury, illness, damage, loss, accident, expense, delay or other irregularity resulting from a member’s participation in any activity …”.  This is similar to the language towards the top of the notice that Grouse Mountain posted.  But in the court’s view, that wording was not sufficient to do more than exclude liability with respect to the normal risks involved in sports.  Knowledge, in short, of the existence of exclusionary language does not of itself indicate awareness of the fact that the extent of the exclusion goes beyond what would normally be expected.

[65]         In our case, the waiver made specific reference to Grouse Mountain’s own negligence.  But, as the trial judge found, that reference was buried in a difficult-to-read section, among colons and semicolons, with no attempt to highlight it or emphasize it in any way, in a notice posted where it would be unreasonable to expect anyone to stop and read it.  It follows from this that the judge’s observation that the first lines of the notice were emphasized and in large print cannot be taken as indicating that Grouse Mountain had done what was necessary to bring the onerous own negligence clause to Mr. Apps’ attention.

[66]         In this regard, it is enlightening to consider the terms of Grouse Mountain’s season’s pass contract form, which must be signed by all persons who purchase season’s passes.

[67]         That document begins with a yellow box outlined in red indicating that it is a release of liability, waiver of claims, assumption of risk and indemnity agreement, and it admonishes the consumer to read it carefully.  Below that box, it sets out terms concerning the assumption of risks, and others relevant to the release of liability and waiver of claims.  The specific waiver clause is then again placed in a yellow box outlined in red, and the own negligence clause is in capital letters.  It makes specific reference to the OLA, and includes a definition of negligence: “I UNDERSTAND THAT NEGLIGENCE INCLUDES FAILURE ON THE PART OF THE RELEASEES TO TAKE REASONABLE STEPS TO SAFEGUARD OR PROTECT ME FROM THE RISKS, DANGERS AND HAZARDS REFERRED TO ABOVE.”

[68]         The document, in short, highlights and explains the own negligence clause in conformity with Lord Denning’s “red hand” comment (see para 30 above). To the extent one’s attention is directed to this document (as it would be by requiring a signature), the court can have confidence that anyone who read it would be well aware of the extent of the waiver.  On the judge’s findings here, that cannot be said of the notice posted by Grouse Mountain at the ticket booth and printed on the ticket.

Spring Distracted Driving Campaign


No Phone#EyesFwdBC! It’s distracted driving campaign time. ICBC tells us that distracted driving is responsible for 26% of collision fatalities in B.C. each year. On average, 76 people die each year in a crash where distracted driving is a contributing factor.

Every year, on average, according to police-reported data from 2014 to 2018:

  • 26 people are killed in distracted driving-related crashes in the Lower Mainland.
  • 9 people are killed in distracted driving-related crashes on Vancouver Island.
  • 29 people are killed in distracted driving-related crashes in the Southern Interior.
  • 12 people are killed in distracted driving-related crashes in the North Central region.

Let’s not forget that distracted driving is not something that is always connected with the use of an electronic device by the driver either. There are many other sources of distraction that take a driver’s attention away from the task of driving. Anything that takes your hands off the wheel or your mind off of the task can be distracting as well.

examples of driver distractions

The B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police (BCACP) have a stake in this as well. Chief Constable Neil Dubord is the chair of the BCACP Traffic Safety Committee and he contributes the following advice:

“Distracted driving continues to be a serious issue in our province – it’s the number one cause of crashes. Police officers see distracted drivers on the roads in every community. We are stepping up efforts making sure people leave their phones alone while driving.”

To round out the message, remember that your first ticket for improper use of an electronic device while driving will cost you a $368 fine and $252 for the four penalty points. Do it again within one year (about 1,335 of us do) and you are looking at a bill for just over $2,500.

I often wonder whether these campaigns get through to the people that they are aimed at. According to the Traffic Injury Research Foundation they do make a difference:

  • reduced the number of road incidents by approximately 9%
  • increased seatbelt use by 25%
  • reduced speeding by 16%
  • increased yielding behaviour by 37%
  • increased risk comprehension by about 16%

However, they must be coupled with legislation, enforcement and education, which our government and ICBC tries to do.

There is also some indication that local, personally directed campaigns that show by far the biggest effect on road accidents. So, thank you for reading this. Hopefully, you take something away from doing so that results in the reduction of your crash risk.

Condo owners face bankruptcies as insurance costs soar

Jeremy Hainsworth | Richmond News

Uninsured condo owners could find themselves bankrupt and homeless if they don’t maintain their suites and personal insurance as strata insurance costs skyrocket, said the Condominium Home Owners’ Association of B.C.

The cost of catastrophes, construction, claims and reinsurance has pushed insurance premiums on many British Columbia strata corporations, or condo owner groups, through the roof.

The concern for individual owners is not having their own suite insurance to handle unforeseen crises, said association executive director Tony Gioventu.

If something from a suite causes damage to common property, the suite owner would be responsible for the deductible of the corporation, he said.

Korecki Real Estate Services Inc. manages 7,500 strata units in dozens of Lower Mainland buildings. Of the strata corporations that have recently renewed their insurance, around 90% saw premium increases of 50-100%, Korecki property manager Mike Alavi said. “We saw half of the stratas get hit on December 31, and the other half are going to get hit on April 30,” Alavi said.

Those jumps are above the Insurance Bureau of Canada’s provincial average of 35%, but below some of the jaw-dropping 300-600% increases Gioventu has heard of.

And, with building insurance rates soaring, so are deductibles, payments an individual could find themselves responsible for.

“Those deductibles are no longer $25,000,” Gioventu said. Instead, an owner could face a bill ranging from $100,000 to $750,000.

A problem, Gioventu said, is many people no longer face the condition of insurance for a mortgage once the latter is paid off. And some don’t reinsure, leaving themselves vulnerable.

Moreover, some don’t maintain their suites, leaving themselves open to huge bills if something goes wrong.

“I am amazed at the number of people who don’t purchase homeowner insurance when they live in condos,” Gioventu said.

He cited an issue of people hanging clothes from fire sprinkler heads.

“These types of claims can easily reach $1 million,” he said.

“You could lose your home.”

Gioventu also stressed the need for strata corporations – especially those in aging structures – to be proactive in maintaining their buildings. Neglect is a recipe for incurring a claim that will make reinsurance harder and more costly, he said.

He said some stratas have received insurance notices with massive increases the day before they are due.

“We have stratas that are in a real crisis,” he said.

Gioventu stressed the importance of depreciation reports that can point a strata corporation toward future problems that should be planned for. But, he said, the provincial government has allowed corporations to opt out of such reports, leaving inspections neglected and planning not done.

“The object is to make sure properties are being maintained or repaired,” he said. “They are restricted by what the owners won’t pay for funding.”

Part of that, he explained, is that strata councils need to remember “ they are a board of directors of a company and [they should] behave like that.”

And, that would make getting insurance harder as claims rise.

“The strata is going to end up paying the cost,” he said. “It could potentially end up bankrupting a community.”

Gioventu said the government has a role in mitigating the problems condo owners face.

One plan might be for government to amend legislation to allow stratas to negotiate insurance fee charges.

Source: Glacier Media 


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