December 12, 2019
Automobile Insurance Legislation Changes Effective in the New Year
On January 1, 2020, several changes to the Automobile Insurance Act and associated regulations will come into effect. The changes are intended to help stabilize insurance rates while enhancing consumer protection.
The following improvements will be effective in the new year:
- Motorists will deal with their own insurance company on property damage claims where they are not at fault, contributing to a faster resolution of the claim and a more consumer friendly experience;
- The deductible will double from $2,500 to $5,000 for pain and suffering awards;
- Insurers will be required to report a cancellation of any auto insurance policy to the Registrar of Motor Vehicles;
- The claim adjustment and settlement process for bodily injury claims will be streamlined and injured persons will be required to notify the insurer of their intention to commence an action within 120 days;
- Full filings will be required every three years, and there will be a mechanism for quick approval of rates where changes are no more than three per cent in a given year, and no more than six per cent cumulatively over three years;
- Fleet rated risks will be outside the Board of Commissioners of Public Utilities (PUB) process, allowing taxi companies and others to negotiate their rates with willing insurers;
- Auto insurance will be reviewed at least every five years;
- Insurers will be permitted to offer telematics, which is technology capable of collecting information about where, how and when vehicles are driven, and drivers will have the option to participate in any telematics program offered by their insurer; and,
- Insurers will be required to provide a discount for winter tires.
“During this entire process the consumer has always been our priority. Our goal was to balance affordability with protection to appropriately serve the needs of the residents of the province.”
Honourable Sherry Gambin-Walsh
Minister of Service NL
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2019 12 12 11:55 a.m.