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Strong Support in Alberta for At-Fault Auto Insurance

April 5, 2024 from Western Standard

Understanding Albertans’ Preference for At-Fault Insurance

Fair Alberta Insurance Regulations (FAIR) found that 63% of Albertans favor the at-fault system, with a mere quarter showing a preference for a no-fault option. This clear divide underscores a significant endorsement of the status quo, reflecting a community-wide endorsement of personal responsibility and accountability in driving behaviors.

The consistency of these attitudes over time is demonstrated by the mirroring results from 2021, suggesting a preference for the at-fault system. Albertans value the ability to seek compensation from those who are at fault in accidents, a fundamental aspect missing in no-fault insurance systems. Under the at-fault system, victims can hold the responsible party accountable, which many believe leads to a fairer distribution of justice and financial responsibility.

Concerns about Fairness and Accountability

The debate between at-fault and no-fault insurance isn’t just about premiums and policies—it’s about fairness and ethics. FAIR spokesperson Jackie Halpern articulates a sentiment held by many Albertans: the need for a system that not only provides financial compensation but also upholds moral justice. In the no-fault system, both victims and the responsible parties are treated similarly, which 61% of Albertans oppose. Additionally, 71% disapprove of the inability to sue at-fault drivers, an option that is off the table in no-fault systems.

The Push for Insurance Reform

Despite their preference for the at-fault system, Albertans are also vocal about the need for reform within this framework, particularly regarding the cost of premiums. The survey conducted by FAIR highlights that 68% of the population supports the government exploring options to make at-fault insurance more affordable, without shifting to a no-fault system.

In November, the Alberta government began implementing reforms aimed at addressing high auto insurance rates, signaling a move towards long-term solutions that align with public sentiment. Alberta Premier Danielle Smith emphasized the government’s commitment to finding effective and fair solutions, stating “We know that Albertans have been struggling with their auto insurance rates and that’s why we’ve been working hard to find solutions.”


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