Insurance companies reconsider “dated” policies for suicide attempts

March 11, 2016

News Type:  Weekly Spark News

CBC News

Canadian insurance companies are reviewing their policies to determine whether to eliminate clauses in group and individual plans that exclude coverage of expenses due to self-harm or suicide attempts. This change came after an investigation two months ago by CBC News showing some major insurers can deny payment based on whether the person was determined “sane or “insane” at the time of injury. The Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association said that although each insurer can determine what they want to do, “they are as a whole moving to ensure that both the language used and the exclusions being applied are up to date and in keeping with both the industry’s and Canadian society’s focus on responding to mental health issues in a fair, progressive and compassionate basis.” Although the association says it is taking “serious steps to move this issue forward,” they also said they cannot yet say when the exclusion clauses will be taken out and by which companies. However, the changes are likely to occur when benefit packages are up for their annual review.