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ACTLA is concerned that potential reforms to Alberta’s auto insurance system will primarily benefit insurance companies at the expense of the rights of Albertans. The Committee is considering many options, including bringing in a no-fault regime (similar to a WCB-style system), or reducing/eliminating the damages that an injured person could claim for injuries from a motor vehicle collision, for things like concussions, chronic pain, TMJ and PTSD. Elimination of Alberta’s tort system and replacement with a no-fault insurance regime will likely not lower premium prices for Albertans and will only serve the private financial interest of insurance companies over the long term. ACTLA further questions the credibility of insurer claims of unprofitability and rising claim costs that precipitated this review.
Our submission (found here) includes the following sections and seeks to establish the following points:
Insurer profitability & transparency: Although companies are not transparent with their financial information, all available data indicates insurance companies remain viable, profitable and healthy in Alberta.
Bodily injury claim costs are decreasing: Contrary to key assertions made by the insurance industry, bodily injury claim costs are not the driving factor to premium increases. The period of growth of bodily injury claim costs ended in 2016 and now has begun to decrease.
A no-fault system is not right for Alberta: ACTLA is opposed to a no-fault or hybrid no-fault system. It would be a removal of civil rights. Further, these systems would generate uncertainty and litigation and lead to substantial costs, which would be borne by the Alberta consumer.
Recommendations: ACTLA has prepared a number of recommendations that would make Alberta roads safer, result in costs savings for insurers, and ensure responsible parties are accountable for their actions.
More information can be found on the FAIR website.
The Alberta Civil Trial Lawyers Association was founded in the Spring of 1986 as a non-profit society dedicated to the objectives of advancing the science of jurisprudence, training in all fields and phases of advocacy, upholding the honour and dignity of the profession of law, encouraging brotherhood and sisterhood among the members of the bar, upholding and improving the adversary system and trial by jury, and promoting the administration of justice and the public good.