Shield or Shackles: The Pitfalls of Stronger Dispute Resolution Provisions in Insurance Legislation
Keywords: consumer, Insurance, Dispute Resolution, Privatization, Unequal Power
AbstractThe dispute resolution mechanism for resolving claims-related disputes in jurisdictions like Alberta, British Columbia and Manitoba replaces the appraisal process still in other Canadian jurisdictions. The DR process reflects the growing trend of encouraging parties to use non-judicial mechanisms for fast and cost efficient resolution of disputes. While the DR process can improve access to justice, the current system is premised on formal equality and not sufficiently attentive to the inherently unequal insurer-insured relationship. The informal, privatized system also reflects the growing culture of delegalization of disputes in commercial relationships, and undermines the consumer protection rationale of insurance regulation.
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