Top 5 “Wow!” Moments from Insurance Companies’ Submissions to the Ontario Government on Restoring the $2M Catastrophic Limits

In 2019, the Ontario Ministry of Finance asked for submissions on automobile insurance and whether to return to a $2M limit for medical, rehabilitation and attendant care benefits for catastrophically injured people.

The limit used to be $2M, however in 2016, it was reduced to $1M. The Ford government promised in 2019 to increase the limit back to $2M, however this has not happened yet.

A number of Ontario automobile insurers made written submissions to the government.

A Freedom of Information Request to get the insurers’ submissions revealed that some actually supported a return to the $2M limit, while others did not.

Here are the Top 5 “Wow!” moments from those submissions:


“Aviva supports the principle of providing the highest benefit level to the most seriously injured persons. However, increasing the default limit to $2 million will add more costs to the system and result in higher premiums, if costs are not offset in other ways.”

This may be shocking giving the number of Accident Benefit disputes that Aviva is involved in (see LAT Stats blog), but Aviva’s argument is basically that in order to restore the $2M limit, other changes that restrict coverage have to be made.


“The system is driven by lawyers and clinics” and;

“Need to remove lawyers and clinics from the process, clinics need to get people back to work or pre-existing state, not give them a sick role.”

Of course, lawyers are only needed because insurance companies regularly deny valid claims.


“We do not believe that it is appropriate for a licensed agent to recommend a specific coverage to a client.”

That is literally the job of an insurance broker/agent.


“A standard limit of $1 million is more than fair” and;

“The current $1 million is a significant amount of money and can meet the needs of nearly every person catastrophically injured in an automobile accident in Ontario today” and;

 “Persons catastrophically injured in automobile accidents have access to an extra $1 million and there is nothing to suggest that a further $1 million gets them better care.”

These have been lumped together, since they make pretty much the same argument:  $1M is “more than fair”.

That is not the case. For a paraplegic with 24/7 care needs, the $1M limit is exhausted in less than 14 years using only the Attendant Care benefits.

A further $1M would provide that injured person with more care, instead of the care running out.


“Everyone to go through MIG or protocol and get one chance to come out with documented medical information. If the medical information is not provided in a timely manner it can not be produced later” and;

“remove non-earner coverage”

These comments don’t really touch on the $2M limits at all. Instead, they offer other recommendations for how to change the automobile insurance product.

RSA wants everyone to start in the Minor Injury Guideline (even paraplegics and severely brain injured people). The MIG gives a whopping $3,500 of treatment funding. They also want to totally get rid of the small Non-Earner Benefit (which is geared to children, seniors and others who are severely injured but not working at the time of the accident).

Written by

Duncan is a founding partner of White Macgillivray Lester LLP in Thunder Bay and Lecturer at the Bora Laskin Faculty of Law, Lakehead University, teaching Insurance Law. Duncan has served injury clients all across Northwestern Ontario, from the Manitoba border in the west, to Greenstone in the east and all the way up north to Hudson’s Bay. Duncan is involved in his community, serving on the Board of Directors of the Brain Injury Association of Thunder Bay and Area from 2009 to Present (with 2010 to 2015 as President) and the Board of Directors of Thunder Bay Counselling Centre 2009 to 2015 (with 2011 to 2015 as Board Chair). Duncan is also involved in the legal community, sitting on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Trial Lawyers’ Association since 2015, Thunder Bay Law Association since 2012, and Co-Chairing the Thunder Bay Law Association’s Civil Litigation CLE programs.