Basic ICBC premiums to jump 11 per cent

Cut in optional rates to offset much of the pain for most B.C. motorists

Most motorists will pay ICBC about $27 more in premiums next year, but the bite will be deeper for those who opt only for basic insurance.

Basic premiums will rise $68 or 11.2 per cent per customer if the B.C. Utilities Commission approves the public auto insurer’s proposed rate hike.

Optional premiums will be $41 lower on average, or six per cent.

It reflects a continuing pattern of ICBC reducing the cost of its optional insurance – where it faces competition from private insurers – relative to the basic package, where it has a monopoly.

President and CEO Jon Schubert said the two rates should be looked at in combination, because most motorists buy all their coverage from ICBC.

The combined premium hike works out to an extra 2.1 per cent, lifting the average amount most motorists pay from $1,277 now to $1,304.

Individual rates vary depending on claims history, vehicle type, region of the province, years of experience and level of coverage.

“After four years of not having to increase our rates, we now unfortunately face a different reality,” Schubert said. “We’re not happy that we need to increase our rates but the majority of our customers will be paying just a few dollars more, on average, than they did in 2008.”

He said the drop in optional rates was possible mainly due to declining auto crime and damage claims.

Overall claims costs rose $200 million in the first nine months of 2011.

“We have seen increasing pressure, in particular, from bodily injury costs,” Schubert said.

Bodily injury costs are to hit $1.7 billion this year, up $350 million from five years ago.

Low interest rates due to the global economy have also pushed investment income down.

Just Posted

Nearly $500,000 available for internships with First Nations government

Funds announced through partnership with Northern Development and Government of Canada

Bears face Hawks, Bruins, Flyers and Bulldogs

Grizzlies lose narrowly to place second out of seven Atom teams

New garage for SAR command truck, equipment

Mobile unit and garage project to increase efficiency, reduce response time

UPDATE: Mount Milligan Mine temporarily suspends operations

There have not been any layoffs at this stage

B.C. cougar kitten rescued after mother struck by vehicle

Conservation Officers find home for young kitten found dehydrated and frostbitten near Williams Lake

Fernie, RCMP go to court over city log books in fatal ammonia leak probe

Log books center stage in clashing of investigations between the city and RCMP

B.C.’s biggest pot plant planned for Oliver

Co-founder Tony Holler said the 700,000 sq. ft. facility would produce 100,000 kg of pot per year

High-end whisky seized in B.C. bar raids

Raids end in seizures at Victoria, Nanaimo and Vancouver whisky joints

Double-doubles and demonstrations: Employees rally outside Tim Hortons

Protests held in response to Ontario franchise owners cutting employee benefits and breaks

Train derails in Northwest B.C.

CN reports no injuries or dangerous goods involved after coal train derailment.

Las Vegas shooter acted alone, exact motive still undetermined: Sheriff

Stephen Paddock was behind the gunfire that killed 58 people including two Canadians

Botox, bomb shelters, and the blues: one year into Trump presidency

A look into life in Washington since Trump’s inauguration

Christopher Garnier appealing murder conviction in death of off-duty cop

Jury found Garnier guilty in December, rejecting his claim she died accidentally during rough sex

Most Read