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Additional Insurance Coverage for Foster Parents 

Megson FitzPatrick, in partnership with the Ministry of Children and Family Development of BC, offers an exclusive Extended Property Damage Rider to supplement Foster Parents’ residential homeowners or tenant policies while they have a Foster Child in their care. The rider provides Foster Families additional coverage against property damage due to the acts of a Foster Child placed in their care. 

This insurance rider program is essentially a “group plan” and the master policy is maintained in a provincial office of BC Foster Parents Association (BCFPA). The BCFPA handles and administers this policy on behalf of individuals who are insured through the program in the province of British Columbia. Give us a call here at Megson FitzPatrick for more details about this exclusive Extended Property Damage Rider to support you as a foster parent.  

Extended Property Damage (Rider) Insurance Program for Foster Parents: What It Is & What It Covers 

The Rider program offers coverage against damages or losses to buildings and contents – on owned, rented, used, or property otherwise occupied by a residential caregiver – caused by the actions of a child who has been placed under their care by a social worker “Director” (Child, Family, and Community Services Act, Section 91). It will also cover damages for a youth placed in a caregiver’s home via the Youth Criminal Justice Act 

The maximum amount of coverage this Rider will pay out for the house or contents damaged by a foster child is $500,000 per claim, or the maximum limit your tenant insurance or homeowner’s insurance policy decrees (whichever is less.) This amount is subject to all other insuring agreements, definitions, declarations, limits, conditions, and exclusions of an individual caregiver’s personal insurance policy or policies. Moreover, the minimum deductible for this program is $10,000 per claim, or whatever deductible is stated on your policy – whichever is greatest. You may contact the Ministry or your Delegated Aboriginal Agency for the reimbursement of your deductible. 

Within this Rider insurance program, coverage is provided automatically, and all the premiums are paid by the Ministry to caregivers who meet the following criteria:  

  • Deliver foster care or youth justice care services under a direct agreement with a delegated Aboriginal agency or with the Ministry. 
  • Carry a homeowner or tenant’s insurance policy.

Submitting a Claim Through the Extended Property Damage (Rider) Insurance Program for Foster Parents: 

The claims process for this Rider is the same for all caregivers in the program unless coverage has been purchased separately through the Certificate Program. There is a two-year timeline and a deductible that is applied to each incident. It’s advised you do not let claims accumulate as they will be treated on a case-by-case basis. You cannot combine multiple incidents into one claim, so report each claim as soon as possible following the instance of loss by a foster child in your care. 

Following the instance of loss, you will be required to submit a claim to BCFPA. You must do this within two years of the incident or your claim will likely be denied. Copy all documents to your Agency worker or MCFD for their personal records.  

At this point, you will need to begin the following forms: 

  • A copy of the signature page from your Foster Home Care Agreement or Contract 
  • A copy of the Declaration Page and policy wording from your home insurance or tenant insurance policy outlining what coverage is provided 
  • A statement of the circumstances of the damage, which is written by you, providing details of the circumstances and damage sustained, as well as dates. If possible, provide as many photos as possible of the damage that was done 
  • Include any quotes for repairs or restoration that you have received for the damages 
  • Include your full name (as it appears on your tenant or home insurance policy), and your contact information in full (including all phone numbers, as well as an e-mail address) 
  • Be non-identifying when referring to the foster child who caused the damages. Avoid using their full name and refer to them by a first initial instead. 

At this point, you will need to forward your complete set of documents to the insurance adjuster, Shannon Mycroft at Coast Claims at 5-2727 Quadra Street Victoria, BC V8T 4E5. You can also fax at 250-386-1473, call at 250-386-3111 or email [email protected] 

The insurance adjuster may get in touch with you to ask specific questions regarding the event to expedite the process of you receiving your claim settlement. 

Note: while our insurance adjusters work as quickly as possible, there are occasions when a claims process may be slowed down by unavoidable circumstances. To expedite the settlement of your claim, be sure to provide as much documentation as possible for you to do so and follow all instructions as closely as you can. Send all paperwork promptly. A claim cannot be submitted to an insurance adjuster until all the necessary documentation has been collected. 

Foster Parents’ Insurance Coverage Frequently Asked Questions 

Too few foster parents are aware of the benefits of foster parents’ insurance, otherwise known as an extended property damage rider insurance program. They may assume their home or tenant insurance policy provides all the coverage they need. While you absolutely need tenant insurance and home insurance, since the fosters parents’ insurance coverage acts as an extension, it alone may not be enough. It can be confusing. As such, Megson FitzPatrick has compiled a list of some of our frequently asked questions regarding foster parents’ insurance coverage and answered them here. 

When might a foster parent insurance claim be refused by the insurer? 

If the damage to property is not caused by a foster child, a claim can be refused. In a situation like this, the foster parent will be directed to make a claim through their primary insurance provider instead. Claims can be refused if coverage is explicitly excluded from your primary homeowner/tenant insurance policy or if you do not have a homeowner or tenant policy. 

Is there an insurer that offers coverage based on cumulative effect for repeated damages? 

Say, for example, you had a foster child who caused repeated damage to your walls. Each damage that was caused ended up being less than the deductible. Unfortunately, no insurance is available to cover ongoing damages either through this Rider or through your primary policy. Instead, you should seek restitution through your foster child’s social worker or a social worker through the foster institution. 

If a foster child left significant damages in a home and has since left the home, can you still make a claim? 

Every incident should be treated as an individual claim, which may or may not exceed the deductible listed on your policy. (I.e., cumulative or ongoing damages are not covered.) You’ll only have two years from the date of the incident to file a claim, so if the foster child left three or more years ago, your claim will likely be denied. You should make individual claims on a case-by-case basis for each claim over the amount of your deductible. Talk with your social worker about damages under the deductible amount. 

Does this foster parents’ insurance rider cover theft of jewelry or money? 

This Rider should cover the foster caregiver to the extent that they have covered their own property through their primary insurer. As such, the Rider mirrors your existing primary policy, so you will need added jewelry insurance with your home insurance policy. In the event of theft, your foster child must be charged with theft by the police and/or alternative proof of an admission that theft was committed by the foster child. 

Are damages caused by respite children covered as well? 

So long as the respite caregiver is considered an approved foster parent who has a valid respite contract in place, the Rider can cover damages that are done by children in respite care. 

What if a foster child caused major damage to someone else’s house? 

The owner of the home where the damages were caused by your foster child may have to discuss the situation with you and the child’s social worker or potentially launch a lawsuit that will be covered by your liability coverage. Foster parents with signed contracts automatically have liability coverage through the Caregivers Group Liability Program. Society or agency homes should reach out to their organization for more appropriate answers in this situation. 

More Resources for Foster Parents’ Insurance from Megson FitzPatrick 

For more information on our program, or for resources for Foster Parents, please see the following links: 

Contact Erin FitzPatrick today to find out more. 

Why Megson FitzPatrick for Foster Parents’ Insurance 

As a division of Rogers Insurance, we’re one of the largest independently owned insurance brokerages in all of Canada. We have always been driven by our purpose to improve the lives of our clients, our team, and our communities. We make all our decisions based on providing the best possible customer experience at every opportunity that we are given. 

Our core purpose is to improve the lives of our team, our community, and of course our clients. We support foster parents and caregivers in BC by working with the Ministry of Children and Family Development in BC and want to give our caregivers the peace of mind they deserve. We strive for excellence. If you have any further questions regarding the Extended Property Damage (Rider) Insurance Program for Foster Parents, give us a call today.  

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