Canadian Underwriter

NB auto rate reductions stalled on PUB hearings

July 25, 2003   by Canadian Underwriter

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In response to the New Brunswick government capping “pain and suffering” awards for auto accident victims, the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) confirms that many insurers have already filed for rate reductions. However, these filings are in limbo, the IBC says, awaiting the conclusion of PUB hearings.
Companies insuring about half of the province’s drivers have file for lower rates with the NB Public Utilities Board (PUB), with others are ready to submit.
“Insurance companies are more than willing to comply with the government’s rate reduction policy,” said Don Forgeron, VP Atlantic, IBC. “Unfortunately, it appears that these reductions must wait for the PUB hearings to conclude and the first hearing date isn’t until August 11. We understand the need for these hearings, but consumers want and deserve relief now.”
Forgeron says companies are unwilling to go through the time-consuming and expensive process of filing new rates when the outcome of the hearings is in question. “We hope this bottleneck is cleared soon so insurers can respond to the needs of their customers,” says Forgeron.

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