The Travelers Institute, the public policy division of The Travelers Companies has released its position paper Insuring Autonomy: How Auto Insurance Will Lead Through Changing Risks in Canada. The paper presents the company’s assessment of how the existing auto insurance structure can be leveraged for autonomous vehicles (AVs).

The position paper’s recommendations, as well as the status and future of AVs in Canada, will be discussed during a webinar hosted by the Travelers Institute on Tuesday, Oct. 5, at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. The Honourable Stan Cho, Associate Minister of Transportation for the Government of Ontario, will provide welcoming remarks. Joan Woodward, President of the Travelers Institute and EVP of Public Policy at Travelers, will then moderate a virtual panel, featuring Tasneem Essaji (Director, Transportation Policy Branch, Ministry of Transportation, Government of Ontario), Raed Kadri (Head of Ontario’s Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network) and Caleb Earnest (Vice President of Personal Insurance at Travelers Canada).

The Travelers Institute position paper offers guidance on how to adapt the existing auto insurance system for AVs. This includes ensuring that any proposed legal and regulatory framework governing AVs includes provisions specifically related to auto insurance, and that vehicle owners are required to purchase and maintain adequate insurance for their AVs, including sufficient coverage for the more expensive technology, whether they are personal, ride-hailing, or company-owned vehicles.

The paper also offers guidance on developing a model law relating to AV insurance that builds on the current regulatory and oversight structure for auto insurance and ensuring that the insurance industry is represented in policymaking and stakeholder forums. Likewise, the paper works to support efforts to educate the public about AV-related issues. It also details the role insurers have to play in education, given their extensive customer engagement programs.