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Inpatriate Medical Insurance - FAQ

What is Inpatriate medical insurance?

Inpatriate medical medical insurance provides coverage for medical emergencies, falling ill, annual physical examinations, eye exams, vaccines and pregnancy. Each insurance company's policy has their own benefit offerings and no two policies are the same. You can select a policy to suite your individual insurance needs and budget.

Why should I use a broker to buy Inpatriate medical insurance?

Insurance brokers are unbiased insurance professionals that provide advice and can shop with multiple insurance companies saving you time and money. When buying insurance directly from an insurance company you are only buying their policy without shopping for the best policy at the best price. Using a broker does not cost you a cent, you will pay exactly the same rate regardless of the channel you use to purchase your insurance coverage. If you buy insurance from a travel agent, bank teller, credit union or tour operator you are getting advice from a non-licensed insurance professional.

Who is Inpatriate medical insurance for?

Inpatriate medical insurance is for:

  1. Canadian citizens and permanent residents who are returning to back Canada waiting for their Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan to be reinstated,

  2. super visa applicants;

  3. visitors to Canada;

  4. refugees;

  5. work permit holders;

  6. temporary residents;

  7. foreign expatriates residing in Canada.

Is Inpatriate medical insurance mandatory?

Citizenship and Immigration Canada often requires proof of medical travel insurance before a visitor's visa is approved. For a work visa, work permit or super visa it is a mandatory requirement by Citizenship and Immigration Canada.  For visitors to Canada it is not a mandatory requirement by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the trend is that Immigration Officers are requesting proof of medical insurance. For countries that require a visitor's visa to visit Canada it is recommended that proof of medical insurance be included and submitted together with a visitor's visa application to avoid delays.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada is requesting two years of uninterrupted coverage for my work visa or permit?

The maximum length of coverage by Canadian insurance companies is 12 months. To satisfy the work visa or work permit requirements of Citizenship and Immigration Canada you will need to purchase two years of coverage, we can accomodate this by issuing two back to back 12 month policies.

What if I don't pay for a medical service and I don't have insurance?

Canadian residents who invite relatives or friends to Canada are responsible for their support and are personally liable for all medical expenses incurred in Canada. Foreign expatriates, work visa, work perrmit holders, refugees, visitors to Canada and temporary residents will be personally liable for their medical expenses. Canadian hospitals and medical offices have a legal right to collect unpaid medical bills from the person who sponsors a visitor to Canada or directly from foreign expatriates, temporary resident, visitor to Canada, work visa or work permit holder, and refugees residing or visiting Canada.

What amount of insurance benefit should I purchase?

We recommend at least $100,000 of inpatriate medical travel insurance. Hospital costs in Canada can run up to $3,500 per day. Canada has one of the best health care systems in the world but it is not free. If you plan to travel to the U.S. we recommend a minimum coverage of $150,000 or higher. 

When can I purchase Inpatriate to Canada Medical Insurance?

You can purchase inpatriate to Canada medical insurance at any time. We recommend that you purchase insurance prior to your arrival to Canada. If you are already in Canada and purchasing inpatriate medical travel insurance then the policy will have a waiting period. The waiting period for coverage is two to eight days with most insurance companies.

If you are purchasing inpatriate medical insurance after arrival in Canada not all companies will offer coverage and you will have fewer insurers to choose from. Some insurance companies do not offer insurance after 30 days from the date of arrival in Canada. For exact terms and conditions please refer to the eligibility requirements of the inpatriate medical insurance policy.

Why should I purchase Inpatriate medical insurance from a Canadian Insurance Company and not buy insurance from a Non-Canadian Insurance Company in my country?

  1. Quick claims procedure in Canada and expertise of the Canadian health care system.

  2. Canadian insurance companies are easier to contact should a medical emergency arise during your stay in Canada.

  3. Canadian medical providers prefer to work with Canadian insurance companies.

  4. Direct billing between hospitals and most Canadian insurance companies.

  5. Every insurance company authorized to sell travel insurance policies in Canada is required, by the federal, provincial and territorial regulators, to become a member of Assuris.

Will Inpatriate medical insurance cover me for trips outside Canada?

Yes, except destinations the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade of the Canadian Government has issued a warning to avoid all travel and non-essential travel to that city, region, or country. The majority of time of the trip has to be spent in Canada. Insurance policies also have limits on the amount of days covered per trip outside Canada. Not all policies include coverage to all destinations, the majority include U.S. and Mexico. American insurance companies operating in Canada do not provide coverage to Cuba. Expenses incurred in your country of origin will not be covered. Please refer to policy terms and conditions.

What are exclusions?

All inpatriate medical insurance policies contain exclusions and limitations of coverage. Exclusion is what the travel insurance policy does not cover, hence is excluded from coverage. The most common exclusions are as follows:

  1. Pre-existing medical conditions that are not stable.

  2. High risk activities such as sports, stunt activities.

  3. Traveling to destinations with advisory warnings – including acts of war, terrorism, kidnapping, strike, riot or unlawful visit to any country. For advisory warnings please visit Government of Canada Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade for  a list of destinations the where a warning has been issued to avoid all travel and non-essential travel to that city, region, or country.

  4. Losses while sane or insane – depression, self-inflicted injury, suicide attempt, emotional, mental or nervous disorder.

  5. Pregnancy, childbirth or complication thereof, including high risk pregnancy.

  6. Death or injury while under the influence of alcohol, prohibited drugs or any other intoxicant, non-compliance with prescribed treatment or misuse of drugs.

  7. Air travel other than a passenger on a commercial aircraft.

Can I buy additional coverage to cover the exclusions?

You can buy insurance to cover exclusions, not all exclusions are insurable.

What is a pre-existing medical condition?

Means a sickness, injury or medical condition:

  1. for which you exhibited signs or symptoms; or

  2. for which you required or received medical consultation or treatment including medications; and 

  3. which existed prior to the effective date of your coverage.

Can I buy insurance to cover my pre-existing medical conditions?

We offer inpatriate medical insurance from insurance companies that include coverage for stable pre-existing medical conditions. In order for the pre-existing medical conditions to be covered insurance companies require a stability period of 90, 180, or 365 days. Refer to the policy wording for exact definitions of pre-existing medical conditions coverage, exclusions and limitations.

The majority of claims being denied are due to unstable pre-existing medical conditions. We are insurance brokers not medical practitioners. Consult with your doctor to determine if the policy will cover your stable pre-existing medical conditions and if your health permits travel. Traveling against the advice of your doctor automatically makes you ineligible to purchase inpatriate medical insurance.

What if my pre-existing medical conditions are uninsurable?

Not all stable pre-existing medical conditions are insurable. You can still purchase inpatriate medical insurance without coverage for the uninsurable pre-existing medical conditions.

Is there any medical test or examination required before we can buy Inpatriate Medical Travel Insurance?

There is no medical test or examination required to purchase inpatriate medical insurance. 

How to buy Inpatriate medical travel insurance?

In order to purchase inpatriate medical insurance the insured has to meet the eligibility requirements to be eligible for coverage. There are two different ways to purchase inpatriate medical insurance:

  1. The first is to meet the eligibility requirements and purchase the policy online or over the phone with a Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. licensed insurance broker. There is no medical underwriting and no medical questionnaire to fill out. At time of claim the insured will be required to provide medical information to the insurance company, this is referred to as post claim underwriting. When eligibility requirements are met the insured is eligible to pay the premium, after the premium is paid the policy will be in force. The actual coverage will be determined after you file a claim.

  2. The second way to fill out and a medical questionnaire. You will need to fill out a medical questionnaire and send it back to Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. We will get back to you within five business days with a reply from the insurance company. If you have pre-existing medical conditions the insurance company will review your medical information and reply back with their decision. Be prepared to pay additional premiums to have stable pre-existing medical conditions insured at time of application, this is referred to as a rating. 

If your pre-existing medical conditions have changed between the application date and the effective date which is your departure date you must notify us to have the policy approved for the new pre-existing medical conditions. This may be a new prescribed medication, change in dosage of your existing prescriptions or just a consultation with a doctor. Non-disclosure will automatically make the policy you purchased null and void. Please refer to the policy terms and conditions.

What is a high risk activity?

High risk activities include but not limited to heli-skiing, ski jumping, skydiving, sky-surfing, scuba diving, white water rafting, street lugs, skeleton activity, mountaineering, rodeo activity, and other sports activity.

Can I buy insurance to cover high risk activities?

You can purchase coverage for certain sports activities.

What Inpatiriate medical insurance covers when I return back to Canada?

For Canadian citizens and permanent residents:

Inpatriate (also referred to as expatriate) emergency medical insurance covers expenses for unforeseen medical emergencies or falling ill when your Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan has lapsed, been cancelled or suspended. We would advise all Canadian citizens and permanent residents to contact their Provincial/Territorial Ministry of Health to apply for their Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan to be reinstated.

What Inpatriate medical insurance covers when you visit or reside in Canada?

Inpatriate medical insurance provides coverage that is more comprehensive compared to a visitors to Canada emergency medical insurance policy. It provides more benefits designed for those residing or visiting Canada for an extended period of time. Additional benefits include annual physical examination, annual eye examination and vaccines.

Can I still purchase Inpatriate medical insurance if my Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan has lapsed?

For Canadian citizens and permanent residents:

Yes you can still purchase Inpatriate (also referred to as expatriate) medical insurance it is specifically designed to replace your Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan.

Why do I need Inpatriate Medical Insurance when I return home to my province/territory in Canada?

For Canadian citizens and permanent residents:

Even though insurance companies require you to maintain your Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan's coverage, your Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan does not cover everything and has a time limit on coverage while you are abroad. If you are returning back to Canada after an extended time abroad and your Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan has lapsed, been cancelled or suspended there would be a gap in coverage before it would be reinstated. To fill this gap in coverage you will need to purchase Inpatriate (also referred to as expatriate) medical insurance.

How long does my Provincial Healthcare Insurance Plan cover me for while I am abroad?

For Canadian citizens and permanent residents:

It varies by province/territory of residence typically 182 days, in Ontario and Newfoundland 212 days, check with  your Province/Territory of residence for exact coverage.

Can I extend my Provincial Healthcare Insurance Plan?

For Canadian citizens and permanent residents:

It depends on your Province/Territory of residence and their requirements. In order to extends your Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan you must have been physically in your Province/Territory of residence for a specific period of time usually 2 years. In Ontario 153 days within the last 12 month for two consecutive years.  Not all travel is eligible to extend your Provincial/Territorial Healthcare Insurance Plan's coverage you must meet certain criteria such as: study, work, missionary work or vacation. Please check with your Provincial/Territorial Government Ministry of Health for their exact requirements.

What is a Deductible?

This represents the amount of eligible medical expenses that must be paid by the insured before the insurance company begins to reimburse for covered expenses. There are two different kinds of deductibles, per-claim and per-policy period. A per-claim deductible means that the insured must pay a new deductible for each separate claim. A per-policy period deductible means that the insured must pay the deductible only once during the policy period.

What if I need or want to stay longer than planned?

To extend your coverage, you must make a request before the expiry date or the date you were scheduled to return home. If you do not have a new medical condition or pending claim on your inpatriate medical travel insurance policy, an extension may be issued upon request. If you have a new medical condition or pending claim, the extension is subject to approval by the insurance company. Please refer to the exact terms and conditions of your policy.

Are refunds available?

Refunds are available subject to the terms and conditions of your policy. An administration fee may apply.

How can I fill out an application if I am not in Canada?

To apply for coverage, the insured or the person acting on behalf of the insured has to complete a inpatriate medical insurance application. This is either a medical questionnaire that has to be sent back to Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc., an online application or over the phone application with an insurance broker. If someone is completing the application on behalf of the insured, they must ensure that they are aware of their medical history, pre-existing medical conditions and prescription medications. This information must be accurate and is required to determine eligibility for coverage and to ensure the policy meets the insured's medical insurance requirements. Any incorrect statements on the application will make the policy null and void.

A medical questionnaire, online application, or over the phone application with an insurance broker is the same as a paper application you fill out when purchasing travel insurance from a bank, trust company, credit union or travel agent. The only difference with Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. we shop with multiple insurance companies, compare policies and save you time and money. The insured or the person acting on behalf of the insured does not need to sign a physical paper application for online or over the phone purchases. If a medical questionnaire is required the insured or the person acting on behalf of the insured will need to sign a physical application.

What do I do if I don't know the exact arrival date?

Proof of emergency medical travel insurance for visitors and new immigrants is often required before they can be issued a visitor’s visa. In these circumstances you can select an effective date of 90 days or longer. Once the actual arrival date is know, you will need to change the effective date to coincide with the departure date. If for whatever reason you still do not know the actual departure date prior to the effective date of the policy, you will need to notify us to extend the effective date until the actual departure date is known. Your policy is on hold and you only pay for insurance coverage you use traveling not waiting for your visa to be approved and issued.

Can I get a discount on Travel Insurance?

A deductible it can save you up to 45% on travel insurance with some insurance companies.

What payment options are available?

The only payment option available for inpatriate medical insurance online or over the phone purchases are credit cards. If you don’t have credit cards please contact us directly and we will arrange for an alternate payment method. Some insurance companies accept cheques.

How do I get my policy delivered to me?

After we complete you're online or over the phone purchase your policy is instantly issued and delivered to you by email. You can save your policy on your computer or smart phone and print it.

What do I do with my policy?

Please read your insurance policy and confirmation of coverage. If you made an error contact us to correct the information. Keep a record of your policy in more than one place, you can print it, leave a copy at home and take one with you.  Make sure you send it to someone who can be contacted in case of emergency.

What do I do with my wallet card?

Please carry it with you at all times. If you require medical attention please call the emergency assistance hotline number on your wallet card.

What Companies offer Inpatriate medical insurance?

Stone-Hedge Financial Group Inc. has several Canadian insurance companies that offer this coverage for you to choose from.


Disclaimer: The FAQ  information provided is for general purposes only, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information. Each Insurance Company Policy contains the actual definitions, eligibility requirements, benefits, exclusions and limitation on their respective policies. Insurance Policies are subject to change without notice by the Insurance Companies. If there is a discrepancy between the information provided in the FAQ and the actual insurance policy/certificate of the Insurance Company, the policy /certificate of Insurance Company will override. The information provided does not constitute any insurance, accounting or legal advice please use at own risk.

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