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Legislative Changes to the Insurance Act ― Effective July 1, 2012

As a result of legislative changes to the Insurance Act in British Columbia and Alberta, amendments to group policies held by plan sponsors providing health, dental, life and disability coverage will come into effect on July 1, 2012.

These changes in legislation apply only to insured plans in British Columbia and Alberta. This notice serves as an amendment to your contract/policy and group plan benefits booklet effective July 1, 2012. Please download the PDF copy of this notice and file it with your contract/policy for future reference.

We have prepared a communication notice to assist you in sharing this information with your plan members―as it will serve as an amendment to their group plan benefits booklet.

A PDF version of this communication is available here to distribute the information.

Please contact your Account Manager if you have questions.

Overview of Amendments


Limitation periods for legal actions
The new legislation requires Pacific Blue Cross/BCLife to include a limitation period provision in the contract/policy and employee benefits booklet. The limitation period provision describes the time period in which a plan member may start a proceeding to recover benefits under the plan.

To accommodate this change to your contract/policy (where applicable) under the provision titled “Legal Action,” the following paragraph will be added:
Every action or proceeding against us for the recovery of benefits payable under the Contract is absolutely barred unless commenced within the time set out in the Insurance Act.

Rights to copies of documents
The group plan benefits booklet for plan members will describe their right to receive copies of documents that relate to their contract/policy and their coverage from Pacific Blue Cross/BC Life.
If you reside in Alberta or British Columbia, legislation allows you to obtain, with reasonable notice, copies of the following documents:
  • Your enrolment form or application for insurance;
  • Any written statement or other record, not otherwise part of the application, provided to the insurer as evidence of insurability; and
  • A copy of the contract/policy.
The first copy will be provided at no cost to you. A fee may be charged for subsequent copies. All requests for copies of documents should be directed in writing to Pacific Blue Cross/BC Life.

Blue Shield

Blue Shield is a registered trade-mark of Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
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