Winter 2017 Newsletter

In this month's employee newsletter:
  • BC Residents can call 811 for health services
  • Introducing Health Coaching and Nutrition Counselling to services offered by the Employee and Family Assistance Program

Employee Newsletter

A PDF of document is here if you would like to email/post for your staff

Compassionate Care Leave

When an employee has a family member that is gravely ill, they can apply to take compassionate care leave through Employment Insurance. Learn more about this government-assisted program.

Minimum Eligibility Requirement Situations

Part of the role of administering a group benefits plan is determining if/when an employee is eligible for benefits by meeting the minimum eligibility requirements. When an employee's hours change week to week this can become difficult. The best way to deal with this situation is to average the employee's hours over a period of time ex. over four weeks. The period of time that a company decides on should be used consistently for all employees in the same situation.

Unless you have stated otherwise on your Master Application, all employees must meet these eligibility requirements for benefits:

  • 15 hours per week for Health, Vision and Dental coverage
  • 21 hours per week for Life, Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD &D), Dependent Life and Critical Illness
  • 30 hours per week for Short and Long Term Disability

The other situation that an Administrator should be on the lookout for are employees whose hours have changed over time. Perhaps they used to work a standard 40 hours per week and are now working only 20 hours per week making them now only eligible for Health, Vision and Dental coverage. The reverse can also happen an employee that starts out working 15 hours per week and over a period of time works more hours so that now they are averaging 25 hours per week giving them eligibility to Life, AD & D and Critical Illness. When the hours an employee works changes, it is important to let us know so that we can ensure that they are on the right benefits.

If you have questions around employee eligibility for benefits, please don't hesitate to contact our client services team.

Where Dietitians Can Help

Our newsletter for employees includes information on accessing programs including dietitians. But what do dietitians actually do for individuals? The Dietitians of Canada have created an information sheet on how dietitians can help individuals to manage chronic diseases. Consider posting the pdf for your employees or forwarding it on to them.

Employee Benefits Day

National Employee Benefits Day is being celebrated on April 3, 2017. The day recognizes trustees, administrators, benefits practitioners and professional advisors for their dedication to providing quality benefits and the important role they play in their colleagues' well-being.

This year the focus is on Communications and the International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plans has put together this checklist for communicating to your employees about benefits. There is also a fun colouring sheet that you can work on and share your work of art on twitter using #NEBD.

Celebrate yourselves this April 3 we are proud to work with so many great people that administer benefits for employees.