Manitoba Public Insurance pilot program allows drivers to go directly to specified body shop for estimates


Myron Love

WINNIPEG, MAN. – Manitoba Public Insurance has launched a pilot program that if successful, may shorten the wait time for drivers seeking repair estimates for damaged vehicles.

MPI spokesman Brian Smiley says about a dozen body shops have agreed to participate in the pilot program, which kicked off Jan. 11.

“The project is designed to streamline the repair process and provide increased convenience for our customers,” Smiley says. “Customers will continue to call our Contact Centre to file a claim.”

Customers with qualifying claims, he explains, will be asked which shop they plan to have perform their repairs. If the customer specifies one of the shops participating in the pilot, the customer will be provided the option of participating in the pilot and going directly to that pilot repair shop for their first estimate, instead of a Service or Claim Centre.

Participating repair shops will then conduct the estimate on site.

“At this point in the pilot, only non-contentious claims are eligible,” Smiley notes.

“Customers who choose to participate will receive a letter from Manitoba Public Insurance confirming their eligibility to participate in the pilot.”

As the pilot project moves forward, he adds, additional body shops will be included.  “Wait times for estimates and repairs will vary from shop to shop, depending on their work volumes,” he notes.