Ontario insurer says harsh winter led to spike in home and auto claims

An insurance company in northern Ontario has reported a noticeable year-over-year increase in winter-related home and auto claims in the region.

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Cambrian Insurance manager of claims Lisla Beaton said that it got a lot of calls from clients filing claims after experiencing snow and/or ice build-up on their roofs. Some other clients filed for winter-related auto claims after collisions.

According to Beaton, 2019 began with a slight dip in claims for the month of January. However, that quickly changed in the following months.

“Then we hit February where we had 118% more claims than the year before and then we hit March where we had 130% more claims than we did the year before,” she told CBC News.

Beaton noted that the major issue plaguing most policyholders – this year’s insurance “theme” – is ice and snow build-up.

She added that with so many claims being filed for build-ups, contractors hired to do the repairs have been prioritizing damage to the homes over damage to garages.

“Everybody is stretched at the moment to get the work done, because of the huge increase in the volume of claims,” Beaton explained.

The claims manager has recommended that homeowners check their policies in advance to know what is covered and what is not.

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