Three more Canadian insurance companies have outlined the depth of the COVID-19 crisis financial support programs they are providing to their respective home and auto insurance customers.
Wawanesa Insurance, RSA Canada, and The Co-operators have all enacted a broad range of measures to assist their policyholders during the pandemic:
Wawanesa’s COVID-19 Crisis Relief Measures Worth $40M
Canadian mutual company Wawanesa Insurance introduced $40 million worth of relief measures for its policyholders.
The Wawanesa COVID-19 crisis measures target its auto insurance customers who are not driving. They are encouraged to call their brokers to have their coverage changed. Doing so can save policyholders up to 75% (or $80) on car insurance each month. Moreover, customers who use their vehicles to deliver food and other goods during the pandemic can also change their policies to ensure they are covered.
Wawanesa also stated online it would not implement auto rate increases previously approved by regulators in provinces with private automobile insurance. The decision amounts to an estimated $4.5 million per month for its policyholders.
For customers who have claims filed for their vehicles or properties, Wawanesa will extend car rental and additional living expenses on a case-by-case basis. Furthermore, for policyholders who are working from home because of the COVID-19 crisis, Wawanesa is upping personal home insurance policies to include $5,000 of coverage to protect business property those customers may be using at home. It may also extend terminations and expiry dates on home insurance policy terms by up to 120 days upon request.
Other premium relief actions include waiving non-sufficient fund (NSF) fees until May 25 for missing a payment, and the company will not cancel any policies for non-payment of insurance premiums for the foreseeable future.
Wawanesa customers are encouraged to contact their brokers to take advantage of these relief measures.
“We believe our actions in support of the financial needs of you, our policyholders, fulfils our mission and values and helps promote the important role played by the insurance in keeping the economy working and helping our policyholders navigate these difficult financial times. We remain open for business to assist customers and continue to pay claims,” the company stated.
RSA Canada COVID-19 Plan: Relief for Those Facing Financial Hardship
RSA Canada’s COVID-19 customer relief measures include reduced auto premiums, flexible payment options, and payment deferrals.
"In the last month, Canadians have changed where they work, how much they drive and what they need to protect themselves, their families and their businesses," says Martin Thompson, President and CEO, RSA Canada. "As a national insurer, our promise is to be there for our customers when they need us most, so we are implementing new measures to provide meaningful assistance during these uncertain times."
RSA Canada’s actions, which will be in place until June 30, include the following:
- Auto insurance customers who are driving less or not at all due to the pandemic can request a reduction in their premiums. If you are using your vehicle temporarily to make deliveries for a pharmacy, restaurant, grocery store or an app-based food delivery service, your car insurance will cover you
- Flexible payment options and deferrals may be available for home and auto policyholders
- NSF fees for missed payments after April 1 are waived
- If you are working from home during the pandemic, your home insurance policy is not affected
RSA Canada customers should contact the insurer or their brokers to confirm any changes to their policies and for more information.
The Co-operators’ COVID-19 Auto Premium Update
Reducing car insurance premiums, payment deferrals, and extended payment grace periods are among The Co-operators’ COVID-19 relief measures for its customers.
The insurer will offer auto premium refunds for people who are driving less or who are essential service workers. The company says it will email its customers and update its website in the coming days with additional details on how to apply for the refund.
If you are not driving at all because of the pandemic, contact the company to inquire about suspending your coverage. If you are delivering food or other goods either as a community volunteer or through an app-based food delivery service, different coverage options may be available. Furthermore, if you have received an auto-renewal notice with a premium increase, you are also encouraged to contact your insurance advisor to discuss it.
For customers struggling to make their regular auto or home insurance payments, call the insurer to discuss flexible options including deferring a payment, extending payment grace periods, and the waiving of NSF fees.
If you have a cottage or seasonal property that you cannot visit, the company considers those properties unoccupied and not vacant. Therefore, The Co-operators has removed some of the conditions that apply to coverage for freezing. If the property is unoccupied for five or more consecutive days, you only need to make sure the heat remains on during the normal heating season, or that your water is shut off and the pipes have been drained.
“We know that many of our clients have significantly changed their commuting habits and are using their vehicles for essential trips only. Our approach will consider reduced auto premiums for those who are no longer commuting, working from home, or self-isolating,” says Rob Wesseling, President and CEO, The Co-operators. “We hope this will provide some assistance to help our clients during this unprecedented time.”
Home and auto policyholders can refer to The Co-operators’ online FAQ for more information and are advised to contact the insurer to review their situations and to explore what their options are.
Canadian Insurers Move Quickly to Assist Their Policyholders
All three firms are among a growing list of Canadian insurers that are stepping up to provide financial support to its customers who may be struggling during the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on Canada’s economy.