Intact Financial Corporation announced Oct. 27 that its brands Intact Insurance and belairdirect will no longer offer optional automobile coverage in British Columbia.

The insurer says it made this decision because of upcoming regulatory changes in the province “that will reduce competition and limit choices for consumers.”

"We believe that consumers should have choice and flexibility when it comes to their insurance," said Louis Gagnon, President, Canadian Operations, Intact Financial Corporation. "We have been closely assessing the optional automobile insurance market in British Columbia for some time and made the decision to shift focus to our other lines of business and providing enhanced services to consumers."

Intact will continue to provide personal property, commercial P&C, surety and specialty insurance to individuals and businesses in British Columbia through its brands.

Intact Insurance and belairdirect will stop writing new business on Dec. 1, 2020 and renewals on Jan. 1, 2021.