Issues and Activities

Study Confirms Auto Insurance Rates In New Brunswick Are Much Higher Than Provinces With Public Auto

Press Release



July 28, 2003

Consumers' Association Study Confirms Auto Insurance Rates In New Brunswick Are Much Higher Than Provinces With Public Auto Systems.

OTTAWA, July 28 /CNW/ - "Auto insurance rates in New Brunswick are outrageously high, just like those in Nova Scotia," said Mr. Mel Fruitman, President of the Consumers' Association of Canada. "Drivers in New Brunswick pay up to 100 % more for their auto insurance than do consumers in provinces like Manitoba, Saskatchewan and British Columbia which have public auto systems."

The Consumers' Association today released New Brunswick data, the latest results of its soon to be completed national study of auto insurance rates across Canada. The study may be downloaded here.

"There has been a big debate about how to reduce rates and improve the fairness of auto insurance in New Brunswick", said Mr. Bruce Cran, national secretary of the Consumers Association. "Our Association said to the New Brunswick Government last month that simply "tinkering" with the existing system wouldn't work. We have been proven right".

The New Brunswick Government's solution was to force a cap on benefits paid to victims of crashes. "What has been the result so far?" said Mr. Cran. "Auto insurers did nothing. Premier Lord now is trying a "last straw" solution - introduce legislation to force auto insurers to roll back prices. This isn't going to work either."

While the average rate in New Brunswick is $2030 vs. $835 in Manitoba this average number doesn't tell the entire story. "Averages hide a lot", said Mr. Cran. "The dramatic rate increases in New Brunswick have had a tremendous impact on thousands of people and businesses who must now make sacrifices to pay their auto insurance premiums." 

"Why should a young driver with a clean driving record have to pay up to $3832 in Saint John when they would only pay $771 per year in Regina", said Mr. Cran. "Why should drivers in communities like Bathurst, New Brunswick have to pay 100, 200 or 300 percent more than what they would pay in a comparable community like Penticton, British Columbia where they have a public auto system?"

Last week the Association set up a web-based mechanism for drivers in Canada who want to talk about auto insurance. "We invite any driver in New Brunswick to click on our website and fill out a form that allows a consumer to tell us their auto insurance horror story", said Mr. Cran. "Some of the stories we have received over the last few days have been heart wrenching and our Association will try to assist individual consumers where we can".

For further information: contact Mr. Bruce Cran: (604) 454-7827.