Zurich Canada complaint handling program

1. Our commitment and the purpose of this policy

Zurich Insurance Company Ltd (Canadian Branch) (hereinafter “Zurich Canada”) puts the customer at the heart of what we do. Our complaint-handling policy is based on Zurich Insurance Group’s Code of Conduct and incorporates the following principles:

  • Credibility
  • Accessibility
  • Responsiveness
  • Efficiency

The Ombudsman is the person in charge of applying this complaint-handling policy (“Policy”).

The purpose of this Policy is to set up a free and equitable procedure for dealing with complaints. In the unlikely event that you are not satisfied with our products or services, please follow these procedures. A copy of the Policy is available upon request.

2. What is a complaint?

A complaint is the expression of at least one of the following elements:

  • A reproach in connection with providing (or failing to provide) our products or services, including but not limited to, unfair business practices, conduct in violation of applicable law or regulation, or unethical conduct
  • The identification of a real or potential harm that a consumer has experienced or may experience
  • A request for a remedial action

The initial expression of dissatisfaction by a consumer, whether in writing or otherwise, will not be considered a complaint where the issue is settled in the ordinary course of business.

Where a consumer makes a complaint that is handled and examined by the Ombudsman, the complaint is documented and a complaint file is created. The complaint file will contain the original complaint, the outcome of the complaints examination process and the final response to the complainant.

3. Addressing your complaint

Consult your broker

If you have an insurance broker, you are encouraged to bring your complaint to their attention. If your broker is unable to resolve your concern, you may request the issue be escalated to your broker’s management for further review. If your complaint cannot be resolved to your satisfaction after the management review, you may contact Zurich Canada’s Ombudsman.

Contact Zurich Canada

If you wish to have Zurich Canada to review your complaint directly, you may contact us, preferably in writing. Zurich Canada has a three-stage complaint handling procedure.

Stage 1- Let us know

Most complaints can be resolved quickly by speaking with the appropriate business representative.

Should your complaint not be resolved satisfactorily and you wish to escalate this matter further, please ask to speak with a manager in that department.

Stage 2 - Contact the Ombudsman and acknowledgement of receipt

You are encouraged to seek assistance from your broker or agent and the appropriate business unit of the Company before contacting the Ombudsman. Complaints submitted to the Ombudsman are preferred in writing via email or letter to the following address:

Zurich Insurance Company Ltd (Canadian Branch)
100 King Street West
Suite 5500
P.O. Box 290
Toronto ON Canada
M5X 1C9
Office: 416-586-6773
Toll Free: +1(800)387-5454 ext.6773
E-mail: ombudsman.zurich.canada@zurich.com

Upon receiving your complaint, the Ombudsman will send an acknowledgement of receipt within 10 business days and initiate the company’s complaint examination process. The complaint will be reviewed within 30 days or as soon as reasonably possible of receiving all the information necessary for the examination. After investigating the complaint, the Ombudsman will provide a final response with justifying reasons, or explaining that more time is necessary and why.

Stage 3 - External independent review of the complaint

If, after the Ombudsman has provided a final written letter, your complaint still requires further review, you may choose to:

  • Contact an independent third-party dispute resolution entity: the General Insurance Ombudservice (GIO) or OmbudService for Life & Health Insurance (OLHI).
  • Contact the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) or contact a provincial regulator for further support. Links to the regulators can be accessed through the GIO website: https://www.giocanada.org/links/.
  • Quebec consumers may ask the Ombudsman to transfer their file including all the information related to the complaint to the AMF at any time using the Request the Transfer of a File to the AMF form if they are not satisfied with Zurich Canada's complaint-handling process. The AMF will examine the file and, if necessary, ask you for more information or documents.

Contact information

General Insurance OmbudService (GIO)
10 Milner Business Court, Suite 701
Toronto, Ontario M1B 3C6
Toll Free Telephone: 1-877-225-0446 

OmbudService for Life & Health Insurance (OLHI)
401 Bay Street, PO Box 7
Toronto, Ontario, M5H 2Y4
Toll Free Telephone inquiries: 1-866-461-3222 (English) 1-866-461-2232 (French)

Autorité des marches financiers (AMF)
Place de la Cite, tour Cominar
2640, boulevard Laurier, bureau 400
Quebec, Québec G1V 5C1

800, square Victoria, 22e etage
C.P. 246, tour de la Bourse
Montreal, Quebec H4Z 1G3
Toll Free Telephone: 1-877-525-0337

4. Effective Date

This Policy is effective as of July 2016 and was last amended September 2019.