Are you getting a car insurance discount for having four winter tires installed on your vehicle during the winter months? Did you notify your insurance company? Or at least did you think you notified them?

I am an advocate for installing four winter tires on your vehicle, and one of the benefits I have touted is an insurance discount. As an industry expert, you would assume I would ensure this discount would be applied to my own policy. Well, I thought I did.

I am in the process of moving homes, and I called my insurance company to notify them of my address change, and naturally my insurance premiums are increasing to reflect the new address. Upon review of the new pricing with the agent, it was identified I was not getting the winter tire discount, which would be worth a $10 monthly discount to my policy.

Understandably I was upset, as when I initially purchased the vehicle in 2013, I did notify my insurance provider of my winter tires, and they did apply a discount. However, in 2015 when the Ontario government mandated that insurance companies offer a discount to all drivers with four winter tires, at least in the case of my insurance company, all winter tire discounts were removed. Customers were expected to call their insurance companies to apply the discount, even if they had previously notified the insurance company.

I found this a ridiculous business practice as they know which customers already had winter tires. And although it was published throughout early 2015 in the media that consumers were obligated to notify their insurance company about their winter tires, in my view, I already notified them when I purchased the vehicle in 2013.

In fairness to the insurance company and the agent, recognizing I was upset about the situation, they did offer some compensation. However, as the discount could be meaningful and as you are entitled, double check with your insurance provider or insurance agent that you are getting this discount.

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