New Case: ON Coverage Laws Limited If MVA In BC

Article by Laura Emmett

On April 10, 2018, the Divisional Court released an important decision regarding ATV incidents outside of Ontario. Specifically, in Benson v. Belair Insurance Co. Inc., the Divisional Court considered whether the Claimant was entitled to statutory accident benefits arising from an incident while in British Columbia.

Mr. Benson was a resident of Ontario who had been living in British Columbia. He was injured after he fell from an ATV that was being driven on a public trail owned and occupied by the Northern Rockies Regional Municipality. The ATV was owned by a resident of British Columbia. Since there was no requirement that the ATV be insured in British Columbia, it was not.

At the time of the accident, Mr. Benson had his own insurance policy with Belair in Ontario. The policy was a standard OAP-1 that did not include coverage for any ATVs.

The Claimant applied under his own insurance policy for accident benefits. The Insurer denied coverage because the ATV was not an “automobile” within the meaning of the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule – Effective September 1, 2010. The Claimant filed a dispute with the Financial Services Commission of Ontario. The Arbitrator found that the ATV was not an automobile. While the Claimant appealed the finding, the Director’s Delegate dismissed the appeal.

On Judicial Review, the Divisional Court noted that the question to be determined was whether an ATV that was owned, registered and operated in British Columbia was an automobile covered by the Ontario SABS.

The Divisional Court held that the appropriate legislation to be applied was the legislation in British Columbia. The ATV was operated and the accident happened in British Columbia. The decision to have, or not to have, insurance for this vehicle was made in British Columbia. As a result, British Columbia legislation must determine whether there is entitlement to benefits resulting from the accident.

Reference was made to the Court of Appeal’s decision in Adams v. Pineland Amusement Ltd. (2007 ONCA 844) which found that in determining a case of liability insurance, “the proper question is whether the vehicle [involved in the accident] required motor vehicle insurance at the time and in the circumstances of the incident.” Applying this question in the present case, at the time and in the circumstances of this accident, the ATV was not insured.

The Divisional Court also held that there was no basis to claim that Mr. Benson had a legitimate expectation that Belair would cover an accident involving ATVs as there were no ATVs listed on the subject insurance policy.

The last issue considered by the Divisional Court was the Ontario Off-Road Vehicle Act which stated that “no person shall drive an off-road vehicle unless it is insured under a motor vehicle liability policy” under the Ontario Insurance Act. The Divisional Court concluded that it was reasonable to assume that the provision only required this of ATVs in Ontario, not ATVs in British Columbia.

This decision is of assistance to insurers who are presented with claims outside of Ontario. It is clear that in determining whether the vehicle is an “automobile” within the meaning of the SABS, the trier of fact will consider the applicable law in the jurisdiction where the incident occurred; not the law in Ontario. A word of caution, however, the Divisional Court has left the door open for another party to argue that there was an expectation that the vehicle they were operating was an “automobile” under the SABS. This limited exception is only where a similar vehicle was listed on their own Ontario insurance policy.

See Austin Benson v. Belair Insurance Co. Inc., 2018 ONSC 2297 (CanLII)

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

Source: Mondaq

Possible class action after Freedom of Information web breach in N.S.

HALIFAX _ A Nova Scotia law firm is investigating the potential for a class action lawsuit following a breach of the province’s freedom-of-information Internet portal affecting thousands of sensitive documents.

Between March 3 and March 5, approximately 7,000 documents containing birth dates, social insurance numbers, addresses and government services’ client information were inappropriately accessed.

Lawyer Ray Wagner says it’s concerning that such information was compromised and accessed so readily, and that government delayed informing the public.

The government waited nearly a week to inform the public, while police began their investigation.

A Halifax man was charged last week.

Wagner says anyone who lives in Nova Scotia and is concerned that their information was inappropriately accessed, should contact his law firm.

Chubb Launches Proprietary Online Cyber Risk Index

Chubb, a leader in cyber risk assessment and underwriting, has launched its Chubb Cyber IndexSM, a new interactive platform that showcases nearly two decades worth of Chubb’s proprietary commercial cyber claims data. The Index is designed to highlight a range of cyber threats based on an organization’s industry and size.

“We’re thrilled to offer businesses throughout North America this interactive capability to provide insight into real threats facing them on a daily basis,” said Bill Stewart, Division President of Chubb’s Global Cyber Risk practice. “The first step to protecting a business from a cyber attack is staying aware of what threats are most prominent to a company’s size and industry. Our Cyber Index will help users to better understand their exposures and manage risk before a cyber incident occurs.”

The innovative Index provides users with a simple and immediate means of identifying the leading cyber risks their business may face based on real-world examples of cyber attacks and data breaches. With a user-friendly interface, accessible via desktop or mobile device, users are able to set parameters unique to their company, and view historical trends based on type of threat, size of a company and which industry that company operates within.

“Chubb has nearly two decades of cyber claims data, which enables us to help clients gain insight into the types of events affecting their industries,” said Michael Tanenbaum, Executive Vice President, Chubb.  “That insight has helped us to monitor the evolution of the marketplace and understand various threats and how they impact different businesses, based on their profile.”

Along with delivering key intelligence to businesses of all sizes, the Index will be updated biweekly, and ultimately will deliver real-time data.

“As cyber risks evolve, Chubb will continue to focus and respond to the environment by its strong commitment to the industry and by providing best-in-class solutions to clients,” said Mr. Tanenbaum.  “In the meantime, organizations of all sizes need to proactively assess current procedures in place to mitigate the risk from potential cyber-attacks, and ensure that their cyber insurance policy is structured to addresses any gaps.”

The Index is free to access and can be used at http://www.chubb.com/cybermedia.

About Chubb:
Chubb is the world’s largest publicly traded property and casualty insurance company, and the largest commercial insurer in the United States. With operations in 54 countries and territories, Chubb provides commercial and personal property and casualty insurance, personal accident and supplemental health insurance, reinsurance and life insurance to a diverse group of clients. As an underwriting company, we assess, assume and manage risk with insight and discipline. We service and pay our claims fairly and promptly. The company is also defined by its extensive product and service offerings, broad distribution capabilities, exceptional financial strength and local operations globally. Parent company Chubb Limited is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: CB) and is a component of the S&P 500 index. Chubb maintains executive offices in Zurich, New York, London and other locations, and employs approximately 31,000 people worldwide. Additional information can be found at: chubb.com.

SOURCE Chubb

Symbility and HOVER Collaborate to Reduce Claims Adjusting Costs

Symbility Solutions Inc. (“Symbility”) (TSX.V: SY), a global software company focused on modernizing the insurance industry and HOVER, a platform that offers an accurate, interactive 3D model of any property, today announced their collaboration to enable claims adjusters to quickly generate roof or exterior property plans that facilitate creating estimates and adjusting a claim for policyholders.

Now insurance adjusters using Symbility’s cloud-based claims management software can tap into HOVER’s powerful capabilities to receive accurate measurements needed for property claims, including square footage and linear measurements for roofing, siding, windows, doors, soffit, fascia and more. These exterior measurements are automatically imported into Symbility’s claims estimating platform and converted into a highly accurate 3D roof and exterior plan, allowing adjusters to produce an estimate in a few clicks.

Complete virtual adjusting is also now possible by leveraging the policyholder to take a few photos of their property. This process eliminates unnecessary site visits and will drastically improve cycle times.

“Our goal has always been to improve our customers’ experience by eliminating unnecessary steps in the claims process,” said James Swayze, CEO of Symbility Solutions. “We strive to empower the insurance carriers we work with so that they can provide a superb customer experience for each policyholder. Policyholders will now become more engaged in their claim with greater transparency by utilizing HOVER to gather the information required and eliminate the need for field adjusters to come on-site.”

This new collaboration will allow carriers to complete claims at a faster and more efficient pace than before. By combining HOVER’s accurate measurements with Symbility’s estimating and process management software, insurers will be able to resolve most claims in a fraction of the time and for a fraction of the cost.

“With the ability to now work seamlessly with Symbility, insurance carriers and their adjusters can resolve claims much faster. Homeowners will be able to start repairing their property within days rather than weeks, and insurance carriers will reduce costs while providing a better customer experience,” said Kevin Reilley, Executive Vice President at HOVER.

About HOVER
Founded in 2011, HOVER’s original product was used by the U.S. Military to reduce risk for personnel in harm’s way. Today, HOVER’s technology is transforming a market that has been notoriously difficult to change: home improvement. By building the world’s most comprehensive and accurate database of physical properties, HOVER is creating the future of 3D property data. For more information, visit www.hover.to.

About Symbility
Symbility (TSX.V: SY) believes in creating world-class experiences that simplify business and improve lives. With a history in modernizing insurance claims solutions for the property and health industries, Symbility has established itself as a partner that puts security, efficiency and customer experience first. Symbility PROPERTY™ brings smarter thinking to property insurance. Symbility HEALTH™ helps benefits professionals build their brands and businesses. Our strategic services team, Symbility INTERSECT™ empowers a variety of businesses with smarter mobile and IoT product development strategy, design thinking and engineering excellence. With our three segments pushing industries forward, Symbility proves that change for the better is entirely possible. symbilitysolutions.com

Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

All trade names are the property of their respective owners.

SOURCE Symbility Solutions Inc.

 

USA Gymnastics sues insurance carriers amid Nassar lawsuits

INDIANAPOLIS _ USA Gymnastics is suing its insurance carriers, alleging that they haven’t fully reimbursed it for defence costs incurred in lawsuits filed by victims of disgraced former sports doctor Larry Nassar.

The Indianapolis-based governing body for gymnastics sued seven insurance companies Friday in Marion County.

The Indianapolis Star reports that USA Gymnastics accuses the insurers of breach of contract and alleges they haven’t provided a full defence or fully reimbursed it for defence costs in 10 lawsuits filed by women who say Nassar abused them.

Nassar worked for USA Gymnastics for 29 years and also worked at Michigan State University, which is named in many of the lawsuits.

The women’s lawsuits accuse USA Gymnastics of failing to protect athletes from Nassar’s abuse.

USA Gymnastics has denied those and other allegations.

60% percent of CDN’s would choose digital access to insurance documents

Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) today released the results of a survey that shows consumers want tech-enabled insurance products and services, highlighting the need for regulators to permit greater innovation in regulation overseeing the insurance industry.

From digital communications to usage-based insurance, the survey findings showcase that consumers want companies to use the latest technology. Nearly 6 in 10 Canadians (58%) who pay for auto insurance indicate they would choose to receive their insurance documents online or electronically if it were available to them. That number increases to 71% among millennials. In addition, two-thirds of Canadians who have auto insurance agree that determining premiums based on driving performance or vehicle usage is a fair way to price auto insurance.

“We are living in an age of disruption. How we engage with our customers is evolving and consumer expectations are changing,” said Don Forgeron, President and CEO, IBC. “As insurers, we need to have the ability to adapt to the rapid changes that are impacting our business. Only by embracing innovation and new ways of thinking will we be able to keep the door open to new products and services and new ways of delivering them to Canadians.”

Key findings of IBC’s public opinion research include:

  • Canadians, especially millennials, want digital communications.
    • 58% of Canadians (6 in 10) who pay for auto insurance indicate they would choose to receive their insurance documents online or electronically if this option were available to them. This number rises to 71% for millennials.  Today very few insurance documents can be sent electronically.
    • 54% of respondents believe online insurance information is just as safe as paper-based insurance information. This number is 61% among millennials.
  • Consumers want fair competition.  
    • Two-thirds of Canadians (66%) who have auto insurance agree that determining premiums based on driving performance or vehicle usage is a fair way to price auto insurance.
    • 60% of respondents are willing to share personal information if it means that auto insurance premiums would be lower.
  • Autonomous vehicles are on the minds of millennials.
    • More than half of millennials (54%) are interested in driving autonomous vehicles, compared to 37% of the general population.
    • 58% of millennials say roads will be safer when all vehicles are autonomous.
  • Education and advocacy are playing an increasingly prominent role for insurers.
    • The majority of Canadians (54%) say their insurance company is their second most trusted source, only after a science or flood expert in their region, for information on how to reduce flood risk at home.
    • Canadians want to learn more about their home and auto insurance policies (47% and 45% respectively).

About the Research

IBC conducted a nationwide online study of 1,200 Canadian residents 18 years of age or older between February 5 and February 23, 2018. The margin of error for a strict probability sample for a sample of 2,000 would be ±2.83%, 19 times out of 20. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to multiple sources of error, including, but not limited to, sampling error, coverage error and measurement error.

Additional Resources

About Insurance Bureau of Canada

Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is the national industry association representing Canada’s private home, auto and business insurers. Its member companies make up 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. For more than 50 years, IBC has worked with governments across the country to help make affordable home, auto and business insurance available for all Canadians. IBC supports the vision of consumers and governments trusting, valuing and supporting the private P&C insurance industry. It champions key issues and helps educate consumers on how best to protect their homes, cars, businesses and properties.

P&C insurance touches the lives of nearly every Canadian and plays a critical role in keeping businesses safe and the Canadian economy strong. It employs more than 120,000 Canadians, pays $9 billion in taxes and has a total premium base of $52 billion.

For media releases and more information, visit IBC’s Media Centre at www.ibc.ca. Follow IBC on Twitter @InsuranceBureau or like us on Facebook. If you have a question about home, auto or business insurance, contact IBC’s Consumer Information Centre at 1-844-2ask-IBC.

If you require more information, IBC spokespeople are available to discuss the details in this media release.

SOURCE Insurance Bureau of Canada

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