Desjardins donates $75,000 to the Red Cross to help those affected by wildfires in Fort McMurray

Desjardins Group, the leading cooperative financial group in Canada, is donating $75,000 to the Canadian Red Cross as it works to help families affected by the devastating wildfires burning in and around Fort McMurray, Alberta.


Tens of thousands have been displaced, as emergency responders continue to help with the evacuation and battle the flames. Safety is the utmost priority and helping those affected is an immediate concern. Desjardins Group is committed to contacting and provided assistance to its customers.

“The damages caused by the wildfires are devastating for the people of Fort McMurray,” said Guy Cormier, Chair of the Board, President and CEO of Desjardins Group. “It’s times like these when our customers need us most and it’s important that they know we are available to assist them immediately through this situation. It will affect them for some time to come and we need to be there to help and to bring a sense of normalcy back to their lives as soon as possible.”

A mobile team will be dispatched to the area to speed up claims processing for our customers. In addition, as of Monday May 9,Quebec caisse members will be able to make a donation to the Red Cross via AccesD, or by phone at 1-800-caisses.

Contacts for clients in Fort McMurray
If you are a Desjardins Group customer, please contact us as soon as it is safe to do so with questions about your insurance coverage or to report a claim:

  • State Farm – contact your local agent or call 1-877-STATEFARM (782-8332)
  • The Personal Insurance Company and Desjardins Insurance: 1-888-785-5502
  • Western Direct Insurance: 1-855-674-6338

Customers may also get in touch through Facebook and Twitter:
Facebook: or
Twitter: or

As this event unfolds, Desjardins will be in contact and work actively with emergency officials and government bodies to coordinate the various relief measures and programs that will be implemented over the coming weeks.

About Desjardins Group
Desjardins Group is the leading cooperative financial group in Canada and the sixth largest cooperative financial group in the world, with assets of $248.1 billion. It has been rated one of the Best Employers in Canada by Aon Hewitt. To meet the diverse needs of its members and clients, Desjardins offers a full range of products and services to individuals and businesses through its extensive distribution network, online platforms and subsidiaries across Canada. Considered North America’s strongest bank according to Bloomberg News, Desjardins has one of the highest capital ratios and credit ratings in the industry.


SOURCE Desjardins Group

For further information: (media inquiries only): Valérie Lamarre, Public Relations, Desjardins Group, 514-281-7275 or 1-866-866-7000, ext. 5557275, /; John Bordignon, Media Relations, State Farm Canada, 905-750-5567 / 416-801-6078,,

iA Financial Group donates $50,000 to the Canadian Red Cross to help victims of the Alberta wildfires

iA Financial Group (Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc.) has donated$50,000 to the Canadian Red Cross Alberta Fires Emergency Appeal relief fund to assist the people of Alberta affected by the wildfires.

The employees of iA Financial Group and its subsidiary companies, together with their distribution partners, wish to offer their full support to the residents of Alberta who have been forced out of their homes because of the wildfires.

About iA Financial Group
Founded in 1892, iA Financial Group offers life and health insurance products, mutual and segregated funds, savings and retirement plans, RRSPs, securities, auto and home insurance, mortgages and car loans and other financial products and services for both individuals and groups. It is one of the four largest life and health insurance companies in Canada and among the largest publicly traded companies in the country. iA Financial Group stock is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol IAG.

SOURCE Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc.

For further information: Pierre Picard, Manager, Public Relations, Phone: 418-684-5000, ext. 1-1660, Email:, Website:


Economical Insurance responds to wildfire in Northern Alberta

In response to the wildfire in Northern Alberta, Economical Insurance will be mobilizing its catastrophe response team in the affected area, and is committed to actively supporting local policyholders and brokers throughout the claims process.

“Our first priority is to our policyholders,” said Trevor Brick, Western Regional Claims Manager at Economical Insurance. “An insurance policy is a promise and we are delivering on that promise. We are trying to locate our policyholders to provide them with emergency funding right away so they can carry on with their lives in this catastrophe.

“We will continue to work with our policyholders as they transition back to their homes and businesses once they are able to return.”

Policyholders are encouraged to call Economical’s 24-hour emergency claims number at 1-800 607-2424.

About Economical Insurance
Founded in 1871, Economical Insurance is one of Canada’s leading property and casualty insurers, with $2.0 billion in premiums during 2015 and $5.3 billion in assets as at December 31, 2015. Based in Waterloo, this Canadian-owned and operated company services the insurance needs of more than one million customers across the country. Economical Insurance conducts business under the following brands: Economical Insurance, Economical, Western General, Economical Select, Perth Insurance, Family Insurance Solutions, and Economical Financial.

SOURCE Economical Insurance

For further information: Doug Maybee, Economical Insurance, (T) 519.570.8249, (C) 519.404.0989,

Insurers brace for claims as wildfire rages through Fort McMurray

Insurers brace for claims as wildfire rages through Fort McMurray

Excerpted article written by  JACQUELINE NELSON

The Globe and Mail

As wildfire continues to rage through Fort McMurray, insurance companies are readying for claims to hit, comparing the devastation to one of the country’s costliest natural disasters.

Intact Financial Corp., Canada’s largest property and casualty insurer, has sent staff to the region and increased the capacity of its phone lines. The company said Wednesday morning that losses are already piling up.

“So far, in terms of losses reported since last night, we have about 40 losses reported. Some are evacuations, some are total losses … probably about 25 fires at this point,” Mathieu Lamy, senior vice-president of claims at Intact, told analysts on an earnings conference call, adding that it’s “very early to assess where it’s going to end up.”

The damage in Fort McMurray is drawing comparisons to losses taken by insurers in the spring of 2011 when flames engulfed the town of Slave Lake, Alta. – the most expensive catastrophic loss caused by fire that has ever been recorded in Canada.

Slave Lake caused about $742-million in insured losses and destroyed about one-third of the town, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), an industry group. That puts it in the top five costliest disasters in Canadian history, in a list topped by the 2013 floods in Alberta that caused $1.8-billion in insured damages.

“I would say there are lots of similarities between Fort McMurray and Slave Lake,” said Intact chief executive officer Charles Brindamour on the call, stressing that it was too early to provide comment on the extent of the damages and that customer safety was the paramount concern. Intact had a larger exposure to the Slave Lake disaster because of its market share in the region, and the company’s losses climbed to between $45-million and $55-million after tax as a result of those fires.

Alberta has been grappling with an above-average number of fires of late. In 2015, there were 1,786 wildfires, according to government figures – the third-highest number in the past 25 years. Air tankers dumped enough flame retardant to fill four Olympic-sized swimming pools to manage the fires in 2015.

In 2016, the wildfire season began a month early on March 1, after low levels of snow and rain were recorded.

Mr. Brindamour said Intact had been watching Fort McMurray since the weekend for signals that fire damages could become catastrophic. Yesterday, Intact began sending extra people to Alberta to prepare its response efforts for as soon as access to the sites becomes available.

Other insurers are also mobilized and ready to handle increased call volumes, said Steve Kee, spokesman for the IBC. The IBC has set up its own emergency response line to take calls from residents with questions or concerns. The number is 1-844-227-5422.

Homes and businesses in the area may have different levels of coverage, but policies typically cover fire damage as well as additional living expenses during the time people were forced to leave their homes following the evacuation order.

As Intact waits for more information, the company has tallied its policies in the area. “We know we insure about 1,500 houses, 1,300 tenants in condos,” said Intact’s Mr. Lamy, adding that the company would also be exposed to automotive risk with potential damage to an unknown number of vehicles.

Losses reported on commercial insurance policies can also add up quickly and Intact said it has about 350 clients with insurance for their property, building contents and losses from business interruption. These policies offer a range of coverage from about $20,000 to $12-million, Mr. Lamy said.

Aviva Canada is mobilizing to assist Fort McMurray customers in wildfire

Aviva Canada is mobilizing its Catastrophe (CAT) team to assist customers in the Fort McMurray area, will be on the ground tomorrow morning and are at the ready to take calls now.

“Our hearts go out to the people of Fort McMurray.  The safety of the residents, and that of the fire-fighting teams who are doing everything possible to get the situation under control, must be the primary focus,” said Greg Somerville, President and CEO, Aviva Canada.

Starting tomorrow, senior Aviva claims representatives will open a temporary command centre at the Canalta Lac la Biche Hotel, 9905 83 Avenue, Lac la Biche. Initial support will focus on issuing cheques for living expenses and other immediate needs. Every effort will be made to respond to the needs of our customers. They can count on us to be there for them,” said Somerville.

Peter Corsano who is leading Aviva Canada’s catastrophe response is personally directing claims service for the area. Area residents with an Aviva policy are asked to contact Aviva as soon as possible at 1 866 MY AVIVA (1 866 692 8482) to register their claim and receive immediate assistance. Aviva is working with their insurance brokers in the area to provide additional support.

As soon as the evacuation order has been lifted from Fort McMurray, a new temporary Aviva location will be set up in the town and adjusters will be able to respond directly to the catastrophe and help the community deal with their losses.

Customers can check for more information on Aviva’s response and updates on the situation.

About Aviva Canada

Aviva Canada is one of the leading property and casualty insurance groups in the country providing home, automobile, leisure/lifestyle and business insurance to more than three million customers. A wholly-owned subsidiary of UK-based Aviva plc, the company has more than 3,500 employees, 25 locations across Canada and approximately 1,500 independent broker partners.

Aviva Canada invests in positive change through the Aviva Community Fund, Canada’s longest running online community funding competition. Since its inception in 2009, the Aviva Community Fund has awarded $6.5 million to over 222 charities and community groups nationwide.

For more information visit

SOURCE Aviva Canada Inc.

FIRST Insurance Funding of Canada Announces Partnership with CNA

FIRST Insurance Funding of Canada (FIRST Canada) and CNA today announced a new partnership in which FIRST Insurance Funding will provide innovative payment solutions for CNA’s Canadian customers.

FIRST Canada will provide CNA’s customers with its First Connect® service. This service will enable CNA’s broker community to provide an alternative, flexible payment solution to their clients when a policy is issued. CNA’s brokers can then provide their clients with payment options, including pay in full, easy monthly payments, and credit card payments, with pre-approved terms and competitive rates.

“We are excited to provide our customers with new, flexible payment options, which demonstrates CNA’s ability to create insurance solutions tailored specifically for our Canadian customers,” said Mr. John Hennessy, President & Chief Operating Officer, CNA Canada.

“We are honoured to partner with CNA. Providing flexible payment solutions with their policies demonstrates the expertise and great service CNA is known for,” said Mr. Stuart Bruce, Chief Executive Officer, FIRST Insurance Funding of Canada.

About FIRST Insurance Funding of Canada
FIRST Insurance Funding of Canada (FIRST Canada) provides the Canadian Insurance Market with comprehensive payment solutions. Brokers, MGAs, and Carriers can partner with FIRST Canada and expand their offering to provide more value, choice, and convenience for all their clients. The combined strength of FIRST Canada’s dedicated team, evolved offering, and innovative platform, positions their partners to meet the demanding future of the Canadian Insurance landscape armed with market-leading solutions for success. FIRST Canada is part of the Wintrust (Nasdaq: WTFC) family of companies, totaling in excess of $20 Billion in assets and a part of the largest Premium Finance Companies in North America. For more information please visit

About CNA
Serving businesses and professionals since 1897, CNA is the eighth largest commercial insurance writer and the 13th largest property and casualty company in the United States.  CNA’s insurance products include standard commercial lines, specialty lines, surety, marine and other property and casualty coverages.  CNA’s services include risk management, information services, underwriting, risk control and claims administration.  All products and services may not be available in all provinces and may be subject to change without notice. For more information, please visit CNA at “CNA” is a service mark registered by CNA Financial Corporation with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the Canadian Intellectual Property Office. Certain CNA Financial Corporation subsidiaries use the “CNA” service mark in connection with insurance underwriting and claims activities.

FIRST Insurance Funding of Canada Contacts:
Stuart Bruce
Chief Executive Officer

Crystal Macklin
Vice President of Marketing

CNA Contacts:
Brandon Davis
Media Relations Manager

Tammye Daniels
Marketing Manager


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