Desjardins announces a refund for auto insurance clients who are driving significantly less

Desjardins is one of three financial institutions in North America recognized by the United Nations as a responsible institution during the COVID-19 pandemic

Montreal, QC (Apr. 6, 2019) – In an effort to support its clients, Desjardins General Insurance is offering refunds on auto insurance premiums for Personal and Business clients who are staying at home. Nearly everyone is driving their vehicles less, and Desjardins General Insurance wants to acknowledge this fact. This refund will be offered to clients whose commuting habits have significantly changed and who are only using their vehicles for essential trips to such places as the pharmacy or grocery store. This refund is open to anyone who has lost their job, for example, or who is now working from home or otherwise self-isolating. It will be calculated over a 3-month period and will reflect the client’s annual distance travelled, as declared on their insurance contract.

Eligible clients who are interested in receiving this rebate should apply at (for Desjardins Agent Network clients) or (for direct clients) by May 31.

“As a result of the physical distancing and other government measures implemented due to COVID-19, Canadians are using their cars less. It only seems right that we, as a cooperative, give our clients a refund on their auto insurance premiums,” said Guy Cormier, President and Chief Executive Officer of Desjardins Group.

In addition, using a personal or commercial vehicle for delivery purposes will be temporarily covered under auto insurance policies for Desjardins General Insurance clients. No additional insurance premium will be required, whether the driver is making deliveries as a volunteer or as an employee of a restaurant, pharmacy or grocery store. This coverage does not apply to people who offer delivery services through third party apps and services likes UberEats, Skip the Dishes or DoorDash. No action is required; this relief measure automatically applies to all auto insurance policyholders.

Finally, since the current situation is forcing many people to work from home, Desjardins General Insurance has decided to temporarily raise the coverage limit under home insurance contracts for goods used to work from home (e.g., ergonomic chairs, computer equipment) to $10,000. No action is required; this additional coverage automatically applies to all home insurance policyholders.

These relief measures are on top of those previously announced. These measures include adding liability coverage for a borrowed or rented vehicle at no extra charge for auto insurance policyholders returning early from the US in a rental car. Clients who are experiencing financial difficulties because of COVID-19 may continue to have their insurance premiums deferred. Specific measures are also available for Business clients whose operations have been forced to stop temporarily or who have been severely affected by the COVID-19 situation. Each situation will be handled on a case-by-case basis

Desjardins is one of 3 financial institutions in North America recognized by the United Nations as a responsible institution during the COVID-19 pandemic

On April 6, 2020, Desjardins was recognized as a responsible financial institution during the COVID-19 pandemic by UNEP-FI, a sub-group of the United Nations. This group provides principles for banks, insurers and investors that aim to help the global financial sector actively contribute to a more responsible and sustainable economy. UNEP-FI has shared the various relief measures announced by Desjardins for its Personal and Business members and clients since March 16 as an example to be followed. In total, UNEP-FI recognized 3 financial institutions in North America, including 2 Canadian cooperatives. In September 2019, Desjardins affirmed its leadership position by becoming the first financial institution in Canada to sign the Principles for Responsible Banking (PRB) promoted by this organization. To find out more about Desjardins Group’s initiatives, see the 2019 social and cooperative responsibility report.

More than 151,000 members and clients are seeking financial relief from Desjardins

As of April 3, 2020, more than 151,000 members and clients have contacted Desjardins to take advantage of the relief measures announced by the financial institution. Of this number, 81,000 requests are related to payment deferrals on credit cards, Accord D financing or car loans. In terms of loans and lines of credit, a total of 70,000 requests have been received, including 51,000 related to mortgages. As already announced, members and clients who obtain a payment deferral and who have a Desjardins credit card will also benefit from a reduced annual interest rate of 10.9% during the deferral period. Desjardins will review each request individually and work to find the solution that works best for that member or client.

This time at home is a good time to start teaching young people about finances

With schools and daycares, many parents are at home with their children. This may be a good opportunity to start teaching young people about finances, and the school caisse website has lots of fun activities to help with this. There are activity books that help elementary students to become familiar with saving concepts through fun games like snakes and ladders, quizzes and crossword puzzles.

About Desjardins Group

Desjardins Group is the leading cooperative financial group in Canada and the fifth largest in the world, with assets of $310.9 billion. It has been rated one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers by Mediacorp. To meet the diverse needs of its members and clients, Desjardins offers a full range of products and services to individuals and businesses through its extensive distribution network, online platforms and subsidiaries across Canada. Ranked among the World’s Strongest Banks according to The Banker magazine, Desjardins has one of the highest capital ratios and credit ratings in the industry.

SOURCE: Desjardins Group

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