Life Insurance - Optional

Optional Life provides additional life insurance on you and your dependents. Of course, it is up to you whether or not to purchase Optional Life insurance. However, you should be aware that this plan provides extensive coverage based on group rates, which are generally less expensive than individual rates.

 
Who is Eligible for Optional Life Insurance?

  • You are eligible if you are an active employee and you are a permanent employee who is employed for at least 40% of a regular work week. 
  • Your family members are eligible and defined as follows: 
  • Your spouse is someone to whom you are married legally or by common law (with whom you have lived for at least one year). Same sex spouses are also included.
  • Your dependent children are those who are under 21 or under 26 if attending a full-time, accredited learning institute. A child who is incapable of employment due to a mental or physical condition that occurred before age 21 is considered a dependent child. The child must be primarily dependent on you for support.

Temporary and casual employees are not eligible for Optional Life Insurance coverage. 

  
How Much Optional Life coverage can I Buy? 

You may buy Optional Life coverage for yourself and your dependents in the following amounts: 

Employee or Spouse: 

  • You can buy units of $10,000 up to $500,000.
  • If you apply within 60 days of becoming eligible, you will not need to provide medical evidence for the first $50,000 of coverage. All amounts over $50,000 require medical evidence.
  • If you apply later than 60 days, you will need to provide medical evidence on all amounts and you will no longer have the opportunity to purchase the first $50,000 of coverage without providing medical evidence.

Children: 

Insurance is available in the following amounts: 

  • $2,500
  • $5,000
  • $10,000 

If you apply later than 60 days, medical evidence is required on all amounts for dependent children. 


What is "Medical Evidence of Insurability"? 

Providing medical evidence of insurability means you (and your spouse) must initially fill in a short medical questionnaire about your health status. It is vital that you complete this form truthfully. Providing false information could result in any future claims being denied. Additional medical information may be required. 

If medical evidence is needed because you're applying after 60 days of becoming eligible, or if you're applying for more than $50,000 coverage, you'll need to fill in the Sun Life Financial Statement of Health. The same applies to your spouse.

 

How do I Apply for Optional Life Insurance? 

Ask your Benefits Administrator for a copy of the necessary application form(s). 

If you want to purchase Optional Life Insurance for yourself and/or your spouse, and you apply within 60 days of becoming eligible, you will have access to $50,000 evidence-free coverage (i.e., you won't need a health statement indicating you are in good health). Any coverage over $50,000 will require medical evidence. 

If you apply for Optional Life Insurance for yourself and/or your spouse after 60 days of becoming eligible, you must provide medical evidence and be approved by the insurer before your coverage takes effect. 

To qualify for non-smoking premium rates, you must fill in the "Non-smoking Declaration" part of the application form. If your spouse is applying for non-smoking rates, he or she must do the same. 

When completing your application forms, note the following: 

  • Initial and date any changes or modifications you make on the form.
  • Always use a pen (not pencil).
  • Always spell out full names and do not use abbreviations.
  • If you decline coverage for any voluntary plans available to you, be sure to check off the "no coverage" section of the form.
     

What if I Decide to Decline this Coverage? 

If you decline coverage for Optional Life but change your mind later on, you will have to provide medical evidence proving that you are in good health. If the insurance company does not consider your health status to be satisfactory, you may be declined coverage.
 

When does my Optional Life Coverage become Effective? 

If you apply within 60 days of becoming eligible, the evidence-free coverage (up to $50,000) for you and/or your spouse is effective the day you sign the form. Any remaining Optional Life coverage for you and/or your spouse becomes effective immediately once the application is approved. 

If you apply after 60 days of becoming eligible, Optional Life Insurance for you and/or your spouse becomes effective immediately once the insurer approves your application. 

 

When does Optional Life Coverage End? 

Coverage for you and your dependent children ends when you terminate your employment, reach age 70 or retire, whichever comes first. 

Your spouse's coverage ends when you terminate your employment, retire or when your spouse turns 70, whichever comes first. 

 

Are there any Circumstances where Premiums are Waived? 

Provided you have been approved for Waiver of Premium and remain eligible for such under the terms and conditions of your Employer's Basic Group Life Insurance policy, you need not pay any further premiums under the Policy for yourself, your Insured Spouse and/or Insured Dependent Children, while you remain disabled, until the earliest of the following dates: 

  • the Policy terminates;
  • you reach age 65;
  • you cease to be totally disabled.

All terms and provisions of the Policy apply during the period premiums are waived, including provisions relating to reductions in amounts of insurance. 

 

What Happens to my Optional Life Insurance when I Retire? 

Your Optional Life coverage ends when you retire. You do, however, have the option to convert to an individual policy without providing medical evidence. When you convert to an individual plan, group premium rates are no longer relevant. Your new premium rates will be based on your age and health status.

 

How do You Submit an Optional Life Insurance Claim? 

If you die, or if an insured dependent dies, your Benefits Administrator will give you or the beneficiary a copy of the Sun Life Financial Notification of Death form and the Sun Life Financial Election of Method of Settlement and Statement of Claim form and go over the process to make a claim. Note that in the event of a dependent's death, you are the beneficiary. 

Optional Life Insurance claims must be submitted within one year after the death. You or the beneficiary should: 

  1. Complete the Sun Life Financial Notification of Death form and the Sun Life Financial Election of Method of Settlement and Statement of Claim form;
  2. Show the cause of death on the form;
  3. Provide proof of death, such as an original Funeral Director's Statement of Death; and
  4. Return the completed forms to your Benefits Administrator, who will send them to Health Association Nova Scotia.