Does Equitable Life have a business continuity and pandemic plan?
We have a robust and well-tested business continuity plan in place and have taken the necessary steps to maintain the high level of service you have come to expect from us. Our business is near 100% digital, so the vast majority of our employees are now working remotely from home and are fully functional. Our Customer Care Centre remains open to support plan members and can be reached at 1.800.265.4556. And our Client Relationship Specialists are available for Plan Administrator questions and support.
I have an employee who is currently outside the country and has symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or has tested positive for COVID-19. What should they do?
If a plan member is currently travelling abroad and is experiencing symptoms or is hospitalized with suspicion of the coronavirus, they should contact Allianz at the numbers listed below for assistance and to confirm their coverage.
- Toll-free Canada/USA: 1.800.321.9998
- Global call collect: 519.742.3287
- Allianz Global Assistance ID #9089
I have employees who departed the country after the Government of Canada issued its Global Travel Advisory. Are they still eligible for Travel Assist coverage?
Yes.We will continue to cover plan members for all eligible medical expenses, including those related to COVID-19, for trips outside Canada. Given the global situation is evolving quickly, we will continue to monitor developments and update you accordingly.
In spite of this, we strongly urge you to advise your employees not to travel outside of the country at this time. The risk is high and the options for returning to Canada are now limited. Further, we urge you to advise employees who are outside the country to return to Canada earlier than scheduled, if possible.
Please note: Standard policy restrictions still apply for travel to any country for which the Government of Canada has issued a Level 3 (“Avoid non-essential travel”) or Level 4 (“Avoid all travel”) travel advisory for reasons other than COVID-19.
I have employees who need to travel across the border as an essential part of their job (i.e. commercial transport). Will they continue to be covered under Travel Assist?
Yes, these employees will continue to be covered if they have Travel Assist on their plan.
I have an employee who is self-isolating or in quarantine. Are they eligible for short-term disability?
Short-term disability is designed to replace a plan member’s earnings if they are unable to work due to illness and injury. As a result, only plan members who meet the following criteria are eligible for benefits:
- Plan members who have tested positive for COVID-19 and are unable to work from home are eligible for coverage from Day 1 of their self-isolation period.
- Plan members who have not been tested but have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and are unable to work from home, are eligible for coverage. Claims will be assessed according to the terms of the plan.
Plan members who are in quarantine for any other reason, but do not have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, are not eligible for coverage. These plan members should consider applying for Employment Insurance (EI) benefits, if they do not have an option to work from home.
How can a plan member submit a COVID-19-related short-term disability claim?
To make things easier for plan members who need to submit claims related to COVID-19, we will not require a physician’s statement. Instead plan members should submit our simplified Short Term Disability Plan Member COVID-19 Claim Form. Plan Administrators need to complete their portion of the regular Short Term Disability Form (Form #421).
This is a temporary process that will remain in effect through the current coronavirus situation. We will update on changes and share them on EquitableHealth.ca.
How can a plan member apply for the Employment Insurance sickness benefit?
Canadians quarantined due to COVID-19, who are not receiving Short Term Disability benefits, can apply for Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits. The one-week waiting period for EI sickness benefits has been waived. Service Canada’s dedicated toll-free support number is 1-833-381-2725 or (TTY) 1-800-529-3742.
We are now able to accept a few documents using e-signatures. At this time we will accept e-signatures on all our Administration forms listed on the website (excluding the Statement of Health (452) and Optional Life Insurance application and Statement of Health (509)) We will also accept e-signatures on Master Applications (New Issues).
Below is a list of our approved and accredited vendors. If you do not use one listed below, please let your advisor know and they will seek approval.
- eSignLive (may also be known as OneSpan Sign or Silanis)
- Adobe Sign
For all other questions, please contact your Advisor.