Canadian Underwriter

Is Ontario about to see electronic pink slips?

May 3, 2019   by Jason Contant

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Is electronic proof of auto insurance (EPAI) just around the corner in Ontario?

Industry scuttlebutt is that the new Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA) will allow the use of EPAI this summer, possibly as early as June.

Canadian Underwriter contacted FSRA for comment, but was referred to the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO). When asked to confirm that EPAI will be available in Ontario this summer, FSCO spokesperson Malon Edwards said “the launch date has not yet been set for the approval of electronic proof of insurance in Ontario.”

In the 2019 Ontario Budget, the provincial government said it “recognizes that consumers need change to happen now and is taking early action to make the consumer insurance experience easier and more convenient.” One of the changes includes “bringing the convenience of electronic proof of auto insurance to Ontario drivers,” the government said in the budget, released Apr. 11. Putting Drivers First: A Blueprint for Ontario’s Auto Insurance System is part of the proposed changes, which the government calls a “transformational, multi-year strategy.”

If EPAI does go ahead in Ontario, it would become the second jurisdiction in Canada to allow electronic pink slips. In January 2018, the Office of the Superintendent of Insurance of Nova Scotia became the first regulator in Canada to permit electronic pink slips.

Canadian Underwriter also asked FSCO what some of the challenges are in bringing EPAI to Ontario. Edwards said the regulator continues to work with government and stakeholders to enable the broader use of electronic pink cards while protecting the interests of consumers. FSCO has also examined Nova Scotia’s implementation.

Some of the issues examined surrounding the implementation of electronic proof of insurance in Ontario include:

  • Privacy issues concerning police access to other information on electronic devices
  • Technological factors, including the ability to use locking features on the device to protect privacy, and how to address malfunctions and loss of power
  • Police inspection and handling of the phones, including liability for damage to a mobile device that may occur during the inspection
  • Transfer of the electronic card to others when giving permission to others use their vehicle.

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2 Comments » for Is Ontario about to see electronic pink slips?
  1. Jason says:

    It’s disappointing to see such an important change implemented this late. Canada needs to learn from the US when it comes to innovation in the insurance industry.

  2. Jamie Smith says:

    This really is the least interesting distraction in insurance. Pink slips = invalidated picture of something already in most people’s cars. It changes nothing. We are an industry that will face our own demise shortly because we are not supplying actual digital servicing on par with every other industry out there. Yet we talk about something so non-pivotal to us, and so totally not real digital, like it is the second coming. Maybe the broker channel does need to die a timely death if this is the best we can do for “innovation”. Maybe it isn’t possible to modernize this dinosaur and exit strategies are all that remain. It would seem to be the case based on what CSIO and the likes are focused on.

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