Using your Extended Health Coverage

If you are fortunate enough to have an extended health coverage through your employer or privately, you should take full use of the plan.

ICBC will expect you to access the extended health plan first before they pay anything under Part VII coverage. Hence, you will have to use the plan to get upfront coverage of expenses.

In most cases, ICBC is not allowed to deduct payments by the extended health carrier so they end up paying for the expenses at the end of the claim despite the same expenses already being covered by the extended health carrier. All you need to show is you paid part or all of the premiums of the extended health plan, the extended health carrier is pursuing a right of subrogation (i.e. repayment), or the plan is part of your negotiated employment package. In those three instances, ICBC has no right to deduct the extended health carrier payments.

ICBC tends to ignore the law on non-deductibility and seeks out a deduction on the basis that if they do not have original receipts they are not covering the expenses. The reason ICBC takes that approach is that often the extended health carrier needs originals so if you cannot produce the originals to ICBC chances are you gave them to some other insurance company. A simple way to get around ICBC’s position is to get duplicate original receipts where ever possible.

More and more extended health carriers are now looking to get paid back the expenses they covered through their right of subrogation. If the extended health carrier does not pursue subrogation you may be entitled to double recovery for the expenses, once from the extended health carrier and once from ICBC.

As noted above, often the extended health carrier is looking to apply their right of subrogation. Do not sign any agreement unless you confirm they actually have the right in the contract of insurance and that their entitlement only is for the net amount you get from ICBC after paying legal fees. You do not want to pay back the extended health carrier more than you actually recovered from ICBC.