British Columbia Medical Services Plan Premiums and Regular Premium Assistance Changes (2017 and 2018)
As of , the MSP premium rates will be reduced by 50%. These changes will be reflected in the pay and pension statements for members of the British Columbia Medical Services Plan (MSP). In addition, the new 2017 rate structure will be incorporated into the Government of Canada Pay and Pensions systems. Any retroactive refund or collection of underpaid premiums since will also be processed and reflected in the pay and pension statements. Information from Health Insurance BC has been used to validate a member’s rate structure.
How to change the level of BC MSP coverage
Should an employee or retired member’s December premium rate be incorrect, a new Group Change Request form must be completed and sent to the appropriate compensation or pension office. Coverage and premium deductions will be amended upon its receipt.
Premium rate and level changes
As of , premiums for dependant children, including dependant post-secondary students are no longer required. Therefore, the number of levels of coverage was reduced from three to two: One Adult, and Two Adults in a Family.
Situations that will result in an adjustment include:
- Couples previously covered at Level 2 will migrate to the new Level 2 (see chart below);
- Single parents covered at Levels 2 or 3 will change to the new Level 1
Other situations that would cause a level change are: a change in province of residence, a marriage, a divorce or a death that occurred in 2017.
|Pre Levels||Employee / Retired Member Share of Monthly Premium Rates||Levels as of||2017 Employee / Retired Member Share of Monthly Premium Rates||2018 Employee/ Retired Member Share of Monthly Premium Rates|
|Note: Dependant children over the age of 19 and not in a full-time attendance at a recognized post-secondary institution (this includes trade, technical or high schools) but still residing with their parents are required to obtain their own health insurance number and make arrangements to pay their own monthly premiums directly to Health Insurance BC (HIBC).|
|Level 1 – Single||$37.50||Level 1 – One Adult||$37.50||$18.75|
|Level 2 – Employee and one dependant||$68||Level 2 – Two Adults in a Family||$75||$37.50|
|Level 3 – Employee and multiple dependants||$75|
An employee’s share of the monthly MSP premium is collected from the first and second pay of each month. A retired member’s share of MSP premiums is collected from the monthly pension payment. The Government of Canada (the employer) contributes a matching amount to the BC Ministry of Health on behalf of the employee/retired member. The amount paid by the employee or retired member is reported on their T4 or T4A as a taxable benefit.
Change of Regular Premium Assistance effective
The MSP, through Premium Assistance, offers BC residents assistance for those who cannot afford to pay their premiums. As of , Regular Premium Assistance thresholds increased from $30,000 to $42,000 with a corresponding premium rate adjustment that is tailored to the member’s financial need based on annual net income from the previous year. Only Regular MSP premiums will be withheld and remitted on an employee or retired member’s behalf through the pay or pension payroll systems. If an employee or retired member believes their adjusted net income is below the threshold ($42,000 as of ), they must apply for Regular Premium Assistance to the BC Ministry of Health who will determine their entitlement.
For more information about Regular Premium Assistance and adjusted net income, visit www.gov.bc.ca/premiumassistance.
If an employee or retired member is eligible for Regular Premium Assistance they will need to make arrangements to be billed directly. At the end of each calendar year, they must contact their compensation or pension office with their MSP invoice and request the reimbursement of the 50% employer share.
For additional information regarding payroll deductions, please contact your compensation or pension office.
If you have any questions regarding the Medical Services Plan of BC, please contact Health Insurance BC.
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