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BCFSA is responsible for regulating insurance companies operating in British Columbia.
BCFSA does not licence or regulate insurance agencies, agents (brokers), salespersons or adjusters. That is the responsibility of the Insurance Council of British Columbia.
To learn about BCFSA’s processes for handling complaints and inquiries related to matters within our authority, please review the information on this page.
BCFSA is responsible to ensure insurance companies are managing their financial affairs in such a way that they can meet financial obligations with policyholders. BCFSA also ensures insurance companies are acting in good faith, demonstrating ethical behaviours in the marketplace, providing clear and proper disclosures, and delivering the financial services and products consumers expect.
BCFSA is responsible for the day-to-day regulation of private sector insurers operating in British Columbia. Our responsibilities are to:
- Ensure that insurers are properly authorized;
- Supervise insurers and address solvency concerns with their operations;
- Oversee and address statutory market conduct concerns; and
- Work with other jurisdictions to effectively deal with cross jurisdictional regulatory concerns.
If you have a complaint about your insurance company, you can follow these steps to address your concerns:
- Contact the representative or the manager of the insurance company.
- Contact the senior management of the insurance company, or its internal ombudservice.
- If the matter is not resolved with the insurance company and you have obtained a final position letter from the insurance company, the next step is to contact a third party for an independent review of the complaint.
- General Insurance Ombudsman (“GIO”) for property and casualty insurance company disputes.
- OmbudService for Life and Health Insurance (“OLHI”) for life insurance company disputes.
You may wish to consider the following Guide to determine the appropriate process for your circumstances. At any time during this process, you can contact BCFSA to file a complaint. We will not be able to mediate on a consumer’s behalf or order an insurance company to pay your claim. However, we can help you obtain a clear response from the insurance company. The complaints we receive can also help to monitor and identify systemic issues in the insurance marketplace.
- If your complaint pertains to insurance agents, salespeople or adjusters, please contact the Insurance Council of British Columbia.
- For complaints pertaining to the regulation of the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (“ICBC”) or mandatory automobile insurance requirements — please contact the BC Utilities Commission at www.bcuc.com.
- If your concern involves any legal matter you may consider obtaining legal advice. You can contact the Lawyer Referral Service of the BC branch of the Canadian Bar Association at (604) 687-3221 or toll free at (800) 663-1919.
- For copies of Power of Attorney and Undertakings for insurers — please contact the Canadian Council of Insurance Regulators.
Please complete the BCFSA Insurance Complaint Form. Include copies of all related documentation with your complaint. This includes copies of correspondence to and from the financial institution. Please also ensure your concerns and expectations for resolution are clearly stated.File a Complaint
In order to address your complaint, some or all of the complaint details may be sent to the financial institution. This allows the financial institution the opportunity to provide a complete response to the issue for our review.
Allegations of any sort of misconduct should be accompanied by any available evidence to allow us to begin an inquiry. If such evidence cannot be provided, our ability to conduct any type of review of the matter may be limited.
Please note that the Freedom of Information and Protection of Personal Information Act applies to BCFSA records and information.
We do not generally get involved in individual disputes about business decisions, service quality, legal, civil and/or contractual matters. Insurance policies are legal contracts and the rights and responsibilities of both parties involved are written within the agreement. Resolving individual claims disputes between policyholders and insurance companies is the responsibility of the court system.
If a complaint involves an issue about a financial institution which BCFSA regulates but is a matter which does not generally fall within our authority, you can still submit your complaint. You will receive correspondence acknowledging we have received your complaint, but no inquiry will be conducted. The complaint will be logged and kept in our file.