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Club and Skating School Question and Answer

The following questions are most often asked with regards to the Skate Canada Club/School Liability Insurance Program. The policy wording held by Skate Canada is always the only legal contract of insurance, and the following is for clarification only.

  1. What is Liability Insurance?
    Liability Insurance is primarily designed to reimburse another for the other's financial loss arising out of one's negligence which causes bodily injury to others and/or damage to the property of others.
  2. What is meant by negligence?
    Negligence is commonly understood to mean either the failure to do what a reasonable or prudent person would do in a given situation or doing what such a person would not do in a given situation. This is based on the legal requirement that each of us owes a duty to take care that we do not cause harm to either our fellow man or his property. This duty exists whether the fellow man is on our property or not. Throughout normal training programs and during any carnival, school, show, or competition, each club/school has the responsibility to take all reasonable steps to protect the spectators, participants, and others from injury. In the event of injury, a lawsuit may be brought against the club/school and its members on behalf of any injured party.
  3. Who can be legally liable for negligence?
    Obviously, one is legally liable for one’s own negligence which causes damage to another. However, it is possible to be legally liable for someone else’s negligence.
    1. An employer is responsible for the acts of an employee acting in the scope of his employment, e.g. a professional coach, if the person is paid wages or salary and is not working on a “fee for service” basis.
    2. When liability for negligence is assumed under contract, the one assuming the liability is held responsible whether or not he is actually negligent. In your lease for ice or an arena, you may assume the liability of the landlord. It is recommended that you read your lease carefully and if it appears that unreasonable responsibilities are placed on you, discuss it with your lawyer.
    3. A person having parental authority is liable to reparation for injury caused to another by the act or fault of the minor under his authority, unless he proves that he himself did not commit any fault with regard to the custody, supervision or education of the minor.
  4. How is legal liability established?
    Legal liability may be established in one of the following ways:
    1. Proof – the one alleging negligence must prove the fact in court;
    2. Settlement – if the facts permit, it may be wise to reach an agreement about negligence and the damage involved (out-of-court settlement). You should not enter into any settlements without first reporting the matter to the insurance company;
    3. Statute, Common Law, Quebec Civil Code – some circumstances within the jurisdiction of a statute presume negligence exists (e.g. Highway Traffic Act) in which it is necessary to prove “no negligence” to avoid being held legally liable.
  5. Should our club/school admit liability if it’s involved in a negligence suit?
    Absolutely not! A most important matter in liability insurance is the fact that the Insured is not to admit liability or offer to make payment to a third party. The Insurer agrees to defend the Insured (even if the suit is groundless) and if the Insured admits liability he could both prejudice the defense and invalidate his claim under this policy.
  6. What is covered by the liability insurance provided by this policy?
    The liability insurance provided by this policy is one of the broadest forms available and carries a limit of $5,000,000. Note: In the event of a claim involving one or more insured entities, e.g. club/school, member, coach, the maximum amount payable is $5,000,000 any one occurrence.Liability policies provide for the following payments:
    1. Damage arising out of legal liability for injury to, or death of others, or damage to property of others caused by an occurrence up to the limits of the policy;
    2. Supplementary payments, not part of the policy limits (in Québec only), for defense of the insured, immediate medical aid, court costs taxed against the insured, interest on the insured portion of the judgments against the insured. 
    • In addition to providing the basic negligence cover as outlined above, the Liability Policy provides the following extensions:
    • Injury Caused by the Insured if it is caused while protecting persons or property; 
    • Tenant’s Legal Liability provides for damages to premises leased or rented by the member club/school, subject to a limit of $1,000,000. If the premises is valued higher than $1,000,000, BFL CANADA should be advised in order to increase the policy limit; 
    • Personal Injury provides for libel and slander or false imprisonment; 
    • Non-owned Automobile protects the club/school against possible claims arising out of the use of an automobile owned by one other than the club/school, which is used on club/school business. This does not protect the owner of the vehicle who must look to his own insurance for financial protection.
  7. What is not covered by the liability insurance program?
    Liability policies do not cover every legal liability situation; the insuring agreements and exclusions in the policy govern its response. Not covered in this policy are: legal liability for autos, watercraft and aircraft; nuclear energy and war risks; Workmen’s Compensation; property in care, custody or control of the Insured; professional malpractice; abuse and/or molestation; intentional acts; among others.
  8. Who does this policy cover?
    Coverage for legal liability for bodily Injury or property Damage to third-parties only applies to all participating member clubs/schools, including directors, officers, employees, and all club/school members participating in club/school activities. A “member” is as defined in the club/school by-laws and can include “associate”, “life”, “honorary”, etc. Note: This is not a Directors and Officers liability insurance policy.
  9. Are our club’s/school’s professional coaches covered under the liability policy?
    Registered Skate Canada Professional Coaches are covered under the same policy while instructing on Skate Canada club/school ice. Please refer to Question #6 which applies to the policy limit.
  10. Are volunteers who work at Sectional, Challenge or National Championships covered under the Skate Canada Liability Insurance Policy?
    Yes. Such volunteer help would apply to those persons who assist at any of the Sectional, Challenge Competition, or Canadian Championship levels, but would not be restricted to the days of the championships as they may be working on these activities at times other than the actual competition dates.
  11. Are the parents of the children who belong to our club/school covered under our insurance policy?
    The parents are covered under the insurance program as long as they are functioning as volunteers within the Skate Canada club/school and their children are Skate Canada members. Board members must also be registered members of Skate Canada.
  12. Our club/school is not presently a member of Skate Canada. Is it possible for us to participate in the Skate Canada Club/School Liability Insurance Program?
    No. The master Policy insures only participating organizations which are members of Skate Canada. If you decide to join Skate Canada, you would be most welcome to participate in the program.
  13. Must the club/school be insured for a whole year or can it get insurance to cover only the months that it actually operates?
    Administrative costs are reduced by having one flat premium per calendar year and since the premium is the same for all or part the year, it would not be to your advantage to have a limited policy term. This is not only because of the fact that you would pay exactly the same premium, but that your club’s/school’s operations still continue throughout the summer months, and something might happen which could involve a claim under the policy, even away during the quiet season.
  14. Our club/school is installing a harness to assist in the training of our skaters, do we require additional liability insurance to cover the use of this equipment?
    The policy will defend you for any suit arising out of the use of such equipment and pay for damages or injuries if you should be found to be legally liable for those damages or injuries. Note that the installation of the harness is not covered under this policy. The person who wishes to install a harness must have his own insurance and should provide you with proof that this particular practice is covered.
  15. Can the participants in a CanPowerSkate program use hockey equipment including sticks and pucks?
    The participants may use normal hockey equipment including sticks and pucks. Coverage is limited to practicing skating including hockey drills. Scrimmaging is excluded.
  16. Would a Skate Canada member belonging to our club/school be covered if he is skating at a non-member club/school?
    No. Any Skate Canada member that is skating at a non-member club/school would not be covered.
  17. If our club/school wished to make a claim, must we wait for someone to come from Montreal to begin proceeding?
    The administration of this program is handled by BFL CANADA, situated in Montreal with regard to the issuance of certificates and payment of premiums. However, if and when a claim is made, Premiere Insurance Underwriting Services Inc. has made it a practice to appoint an insurance adjuster locally so that the club/school can be properly serviced in relation to the claim.
  18. Is additional insurance required to cover Provincial Seminars?
    Under the terms and conditions of the policy issued to Skate Canada, all operations of Skate Canada, its member clubs/schools, and any event sanctioned by the Association, or its member clubs/schools, or any combination of these would be covered.
  19. If someone is injured at one of our club/school events, will he automatically be paid for his injury?
    No! Regardless of the severity of the injury, payment will be made only if the club/school, and/or director, and/or employee, and/or member is proved to have been negligent.
  20. Do we have Participant’s Accident Insurance coverage?
    Yes. This program is part of your annual membership registration. All members registered with Skate Canada are covered by the Accident Insurance program; details of which were outlined on the insurance certificate located on Skate Canada’s web site in the Members Only section. The program is mandatory for all members of Skate Canada.
  21. How can our club/school obtain insurance to cover property or crime?
    You need only to complete the application that can be found on Skate Canada’s website under the Members Only section.


Questions/concerns regarding this program should be directed to:

BFL CANADA Risk and Insurance Inc.
2001 McGill College Avenue, Suite 2200
Montreal, Quebec, H3A 1G1

Roxanne Jobin
Commercial-Lines Damage Insurance Broker
Vice-President  (Sports & Leisure)
Direct line:     (514) 905-4335
                     (800) 465-2842, extension 143
Fax:              (514) 843-3842

Serge Roy
Commercial-Lines Damage Insurance Broker
Client Service Assistant (Sports & Leisure)
Direct line:      (514) 905-4405
                      (800) 465-2842, extension 328

Approved by BFL CANADA


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