Advisor Advantage

Have you spent hours of your own time shopping for an employee benefits program only to find yourself getting lost in the industry speak? We know it's difficult to make sense of insurance terms, to find reasonable pricing, and to find a company you trust. 

We like to help our clients make sense of the industry by providing them with trustworthy numbers and reliable advice. 

Lots of people don't realize that we are a brokerage and we are here to shop the market for you - so let us do the heavy lifting while you sit back, relax, and choose a plan based on the work we've put in! 

One Stop Shop

We want to help you find the best deal and the best plan to suit your unique needs. Let us shop the market and put together an easy to read comparison so you don't have to!

Claims Solutions

we can help you fix those tricky claims issues that might be difficult to understand. A lot of the time, a claim hasn't actually been denied, but rather put on hold. We will help you determine how to get things moving along.

 
Friendly and Familiar

Wish you could call your insurance company and talk to an actual person rather than a pre-recorded message? We can help with that! Tell us your problems and we will talk to head office to help you solve them! 

 

The most important part of our job is to help you in any way we can - please call our office if you have any questions, concerns, or you'd just like to know a little bit more about your group plan! We're happy to chat or to set up a meeting with you. 

Deskercise!

What do you do to keep your body moving when you're at work? It's hard to sit behind a desk all day while maintaining proper posture and avoiding those delicious snacks sitting in the office kitchen, but we found some ways to keep you moving while you're in the office!

1. Tap your toes! Turn on your favourite radio station and tap your toes to the beat of each tune; this keeps your legs moving and your circulation flowing! 

Fitness

2. Take the stairs! We know the elevator is easier, but if you work on a lower floor and you're up for a challenge, try the stairs a couple times per week! 

3. Wait by the printer! Sure, this might sound a little bit boring, but why not do some calf raises while waiting for your pages to print?

4. Butt squeezes! Yeah, yeah, yeah, we know this sounds funny, but why not tone those glutes when no one is looking?! Just squeeze your cheeks together and hold for 5-10 seconds until you get tired and wait for the results!

5. Leg raises! Simply lift your legs, hold them in place for 5-10 seconds and then lower them slowly without allowing your feet to touch the ground. If it's not hard enough you can loop your purse around your feet for some extra weight. 

 

Like these tips? Check back for more next week or follow this link for the full article! 

 

Health and Dental Care Revisions

The Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan is implementing a 12-month pilot project beginning in January, 2017. 

Currently, the Chambers Plan does not allow employees to claim services and/or treatments provided to them by their employer.

For example, a dental assistant cannot receive treatments from the dentist who he or she works alongside. 

The pilot project will revise this rule to allow employees to claim health or dental services provided to them by their respective employers. 

We hope that this rule allows for ease of access to health care providers and look forward to the positive changes this will bring to our Chambers Plan members. 

Learn more about your Health and Dental Benefits here.

Hints for Navigating Your Healthcare Plan

It can be easy to forget about keeping our office up to date on changes to your health care plan, but we want to make sure you get the most of your benefits. Here are some tips to help you navigate your Group Benefit Plan: 

  • You have 30 days to notify your plan administrator if you experience any life changes that will affect your coverage (marriage, birth of a baby, lost coverage through your spouse's plan, etc). If you miss the window of opportunity, there will be penalties/restrictions to your or your dependent's coverage. 
  • Your plan covers up to the cost of both brand name and generic drugs that are listed on our national formulary. If you prefer to have the brand name option of a drug when there is a generic available, please ensure that your doctor writes "No Substitutions" on your prescription. This will ensure that you receive the maximum amount of coverage possible on the brand name drug. 
  • Ambulance transportation is covered by your plan. There is a $250 charge for "paramedical assessment" if you call an ambulance (or someone else calls an ambulance on your behalf) and you are nor transported anywhere. this charge is not covered by the plan, so whenever possible, please let the ambulance take you to a hospital so that you're not stuck with the paramedical assessment fee. 

Your employee book contains a brochure with information about our online site called my-benefits. You can use the site to submit claims, check to see how much room you have remaining for each service type, and your next eligible service date, print off new cards, check on the status of all of your submitted claims, and much more. 

 

If you need additional help, please call or email our office and we would be happy to assist you! 

Coordinating Health and Dental Benefits

In many cases, getting the highest coverage may mean coordinating benefits with other insurance plans. Coordinating benefits is common with dental and drug claims, and happen if an employee or a dependent is covered under your group insurance plan and under a spouse's program. In this case, the two plans may combine to pay up to 100% of the claim expenses . 

When both spouses have coverage, claims should go to the patient's plan first. Any expenses not covered by the patient's plan should then be submitted to the spouse's plan along with the Explanation of Benefits from the initial claim. 

For dependent's benefits, the claim goes through the plan of the parent whose birthday falls earlier in the calendar year, then to the spouse's plan along with the Explanation of Benefits. 

When parents are separated or divorced, dependent's claims should be submitted in this order:

  • The plan of the parent with custody
  • The spouse of the parent with custody 
  • The parent who does not have custody 
  • The spouse of the parent who does not have custody

Remember to make photocopies of all documents before you send them to each plan. By coordinating benefits, you can ensure your employees are making the most of their benefit plans.

My-Benefits Mobile App

Plan participants of Maximum Benefit can now submit most Health and Dental claims using a smartphone or tablet. Claims that are submitted online are processed quickly and easily, which allows you to get your money back faster. 

 

The my-benefits app gives Maximum Benefits participants secure access to coverage and services from anywhere at any time. In addition to submitting claims, you can also 

  • Check to see when you are your dependents are eligible for services 
  • Sign up for direct deposit so claim payments are sent directly to your bank account 
  • Access detailed coverage information easily and quickly 
  • Access your Assure drug card and contact numbers for emergency travel claims 

The my-benefits app is free and convenient, it can be downloaded from Google Play or the Apple App store. Once you have downloaded the app, sign in with your my-benefits username and password and you will have immediate access to your benefits, claims, and coverage. 

Visit www.my-benefits.ca and click 'Sign me Up'

 

10 Features of a Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan

10. No Minimum Firm Size

Your company is eligible to apply even if it's a one person operation. The Chambers Plan was introduced to assist small businesses consisting of up to 50 employees

9. No Industry Restrictions

All for-profit businesses are eligible to participate in Chambers Plan as long as they are members of a participating Chamber. Whether you own a farm or a home-based business, you are entitled to take advantage of the customized cover the plan offers. 

8. Guaranteed Approval

With three or more full-time people, you can choose options that guarantee cover to you and your employees. Businesses that operate with three or four fill-time employees are eligible for guaranteed coverage. Organizations with five or more employees can choose extensive dental coverage and groups of ten or more can add children's orthodontics. 

7. Guaranteed Renewable

Chambers Plan guarantees your firm can renew coverage as long as you pay your premium each month. Once your business is insured by the Chambers Plan, your coverage is automatically renewed. 

6. Rate Stability

Claims are averaged over more than 25,000 companies just like yours. Higher than usual claims one year? You won't be singled out for a price increase. Chambers Plan pools your claims with other participants so premiums are based on the average claims of all participants.

5. Not-For-Profit

Chambers Plan operates under the direction of the not-for-profit Chamber Insurance Corporation of Canada.  Keeping your interests at the forefront, Chambers plan operates under the guidance of volunteer directors who are also Chamber members. 

4. Outstanding Service

The Plan's service centre works in concert with your exclusive, local Chambers Plan advisor to provide answers to all of your questions. Our advisor present yo with options that reflect the size and requirements of your 

3. Fast, accurate payments

Most health and dental claims turn around in 48 hours. You can opt for a pharmacy card and electronic dental claim submission, and even direct deposit to employee bank accounts. 

2. You Choose the Coverage

Every firm participating in Chambers Plan has a custom benefit program, based on the coverage the owner selects. In addition to competitively priced health, dental, and vision benefits, our impressive list of extensions includes travel insurance, an automatic RRSP payroll deduction program, and options for employers over 65, such as prescription drug, ambulance, and semi-private hospital coverage. 

1. You Control the Cost

Why pay for a package with benefits you don't want when you can customize?

We recognize that small business owners are constantly struggling to keep costs down. By choosing options based on your company's needs and carefully selecting the amount of coverage provided, you can create a plan that doesn't break the bank. 

 


Be Prepared For Your Vacation

One of the most important steps in preparing for your holiday is to review your insurance plan to make sure you have Emergency Medical Travel coverage. 

The Chamber Plan's Voyage Assistance program covers expenses that you may be charged outside of your province of residence in a medical emergency. The Chambers Plan will pay eligible expenses over the amount covered by your provincial health insurance including: 

  • A semi-private hospital room 
  • Medical services and supplies in a hospital 
  • Physicians' services 
  • Prescription drugs 

Voyage assistance confirms your eligibility for coverage and can help you during a medical emergency. it can direct you to a local physician or medical facility, cover payments required by treatment facilities, and cover changes to  your travel plans to ensure you return home. 

The Chambers Plan covers insured employees and their dependents as long as they're also covered by their provincial health care program. Completely disabled employees who qualify for the Waver of Premium under the life insurance benefit are not covered for emergency medical travel. 

Group Benefits are still an option over the age of 65

Due to the economy, or personal choice, more and more employees are choosing to work past the age of 65. As the workforce changes we aim to change along with it, which is why employees who have surpassed the traditional age of retirement are still able to receive group benefits. 

The Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan allows your company to apply for Group benefits once you have been in business for six months. Each plan is customized to suit your needs.

 coverage for employees from 65-80 can include

  • Health care - including prescription drug, ambulance ad semi-private hospital coverage
  • Emergency Medical Travel - the first 90 days of trips for certificate holders age 65-69, 60 days for certificate holders age 70-74, and 30 days for certificate holders age 75-80 
  • Life benefits with Accidental Death & Dismemberment payments 
  • Dependent Life coverage for spouses and dependent children 
  • Dental benefits
  • Best Doctors - access to worldwide medical specialists for diagnostic and treatment planning services 
  • Preferred Vision eye wear and hearing devise purchase discounts
  • Health Access telephone line offering information on health, nutrition and regional resources
  • Employee Assistance Service - counselling services for confidential help dealing with personal issues 
  • Business Assistance Service - providing owners access to legal, accounting and human resource services. 

If you or someone in your company is considering working past the age of 65, it is important to ensure that they are provided with valid coverage on your group plan. The Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan will work with you and your company to provide the best coverage to every employee at your firm. 

Introducing e-claims!

Plan members can now save time, paper, and postage by submitting your health and dental claims online through my-benefits E-Claims. Here are the steps to enrol online with my-benefits:

  • Go to www.my-benefits.ca. If you're using your smart phone, do not use the mobile site. Please click "No, and continue to my-benefits." The mobile app will be coming soon.
  • Once you're reached the official website, please look in the top section and click "Sign Me Up.
  • Then click "I am a plan member" and have your beige wallet card in had. Follow the steps as prompted, your password and login information will be emailed to you. 

Once you are logged onto my-benefits, you will find a "Submit Claims" tab in the menu, this allows you to electronically submit all health and dental claims with the exception of prescription drug and travel claims. You will need to sign up for direct deposit of claim payments, you will be walked through this step if you have not already completed it. 

6 Simple steps to submitting claims: 

  1. Read and agree to the Terms and Conditions
  2. Select the patient who used the services 
  3. Select the service or product supplies (type of claim)
  4. Select the provider (dentist, optician, chiropractor, etc...) 
  5. Enter the service date and the amount charged by the provider, attach an electronic copy of the original receipt or an "Explanation of Benefits" statement from any plan that has already paid a portion of the expense 
  6. Read and agree to the "Authorization" and indicate if the claim should be paid to the insurer or the service provider. 

You will receive an email when your "Explanation of Benefits" has been prepared. You can view the status of any claim at any time under the "Claims History" tab. 

To protect the plan from fraud and misuse, claims submitted using my-benefits will be subject to random audits and verification. You will be required to retain all original documents for 12 months from the date of submission for presentation in case a claim is selected for audit.