by Peter Buxton, trial lawyer
Susan Luzaruk of the Vancouver Sun reports that ICBC really doesn’t know what you’re going to pay after September 1 of this year.
That is because ICBC is still figuring out what individual drivers will pay under a new system that more heavily penalizes those who caused accidents.
The rates will also be determined by other drivers living in the same household as the primary driver — or employees who work for the same company — and that won’t be calculated until drivers arrive at their insurance broker’s office with a list of drivers, their licence numbers and dates of birth.
Also beginning Sept. 1, optional insurance premiums will be affected by two minor convictions, such as failing to stop or yield or speeding, or one major conviction, impaired driving, distracted driving or excessive speeding.
“The whole system’s changing,” said Andrew Janzen, owner of Janzen Insurance in South Surrey and a board member of the Insurance Brokers Association of B.C. “We now have to I.D. all the drivers. … The rates are going up and the system will be slower.
“It will be an adjustment because it’s totally different than the way we’ve done it for the past 40 years,” he said. “So notices to renew are going out and they won’t have a premium on it, and that’s going to be weird for some people.”…
Whether or not, as ICBC promises, most drivers will eventually pay cheaper premiums remains to be seen. That’s because the largest factor driving up costs is the number and size of claims to fix vehicles and settle lawsuits.
“Until the dust settles, you can’t really say,” Janzen said. “Will bad drivers (facing higher premiums) still be driving or will they be taking the bus?”
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