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Canadian Underwriter - September 2014


Unfriendly Skies?
Recent airline hull losses, such as the tragedies in July in Ukraine, Taiwan and Mali, have insurance professionals predicting that rating levels will need to be reviewed. This underscores the need for underwriters to obtain detailed information on risk factors such as overflight plans and overnight stops.

Critical Condition
In most Canadian jurisdictions, people who drive motor vehicles as part of their employment duties have no statutory duty to tell their employers if they require an alcohol ignition interlock device as a condition of driving. However, there are several measures that commercial fleet policyholders can take to manage this risk.

Attacking Fraud
It has been nearly two years since the Ontario Auto Insurance Anti-Fraud Task Force delivered its final report, with 38 recommendations. A number of regulatory changes were made and with the Liberals re-elected with a majority, it is expected that adoption of the remaining recommendations will accelerate.

Welcome Respite
Canadian property & casualty insurers suffered $652 million in losses from catastrophes during the first six months of 2014, while annual losses from 2009 through 2012 averaged $1.12 billion per year. A calm year provides an opportunity to prepare for an active one.

Lessons from Airdrie
The last two summers have brought record levels of hail damage to Alberta, and last month's storm in Aidrie was labeled as catastrophic. Unfortunately, some vehicle owners mistakenly believe their liability policy covers hail, while some property owners are unaware of coverage limitations on certain materials used in siding.


Cover story

Damages on Tap
Joint and several liability tort systems in Canada have resulted in "deep-pocket" municipalities tending to absorb a bigger hit when named in lawsuits with multiple defendants. Many municipalities say, however, that this inequity can be corrected - and the flow of money staunched - by adopting proportionate liability.


The Eternal Optimist
Stéphan Bernatchez, president-elect of Insurance Brokers Association of Canada, sees challenges for brokers, but thinks that working together, these can be solved.