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Can I pay for super visa insurance monthly?

SUMMARY

Effective August 2022, the IRCC will not accept super visa insurance unless it has been paid in full. This means new super visa applicants cannot pay in monthly installments. But super visa holders already in Canada will not be affected.

By Jiten Puri
CEO & Founder, Insurance Advisor, LLQP
8 min read
IN THIS ARTICLE

Since 2011, the Canadian super visa program has helped to connect Canadian residents with their foreign parents and grandparents. Its corresponding insurance has kept those individuals covered in case they have an emergency while they are visiting.

But as of August 3, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will not accept super visa insurance that is paid in monthly installments. This is a major change from what had been allowed up until this point. Here’s what that means for existing policyholders, pending applicants, and their family members.

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What is a super visa?

A super visa is a unique visitor’s visa for the foreign parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents. Many Canadians first come to Canada as immigrants. So, their relatives may still be foreign nationals despite their current status in Canada.

Most visitors to Canada are issued a 6-month visitor visa. But the super visa is special. It’s a 10-year multiple entry visa that allows visitors to stay for up to 5 years, with the option to apply for a 2-year extension.

It’s basically a way for your foreign relatives to spend some extended quality time with you without causing financial burden should unforeseen medical expenses arise.

What is super visa insurance? 

This is a specialized form of travel medical insurance that is designed to cover visitors for the entire time they are in Canada. It helps cover the costs of medical emergencies and other healthcare needs that may arise during their stay.

It usually covers costs such as:

  • Emergency medical treatment for illness or injury
  • Prescription medication
  • Emergency dental care
  • Essential medical equipment (crutches, wheelchairs, slings, braces, etc.)
  • X-rays and other diagnostic services (laboratory procedures, bloodwork, ultrasounds, etc.)
  • Required ground, air or sea ambulance services
  • Follow-up treatment
  • Ambulance travel to the nearest hospital

But coverage can vary as policies can cover different, or more, costs.

There are many different types of Travel Insurance for students, foreign workers, snowbirds, super visa holders, and others travellers to/from/within Canada.

Is super visa insurance mandatory? 

Visitors to Canada on a super visa are required to have super visa medical insurance. Canada’s public healthcare (like OHIP in Ontario) does not cover visitors. So, the Canadian government made this form of medical insurance mandatory for visiting parents and grandparents who will be staying for long periods of time. This is to ensure that they have private medical coverage just in case they need it.

But it’s important to note that there are also very strict stipulations for this type of insurance coverage. For instance, it must:

  • Cover emergency medical care, hospitalization, and repatriation
  • Provide a minimum coverage amount of $100,000 CAD
  • Be valid for at least one year
  • Be purchased from a Canadian insurance company
  • Already be purchased before arrival in Canada

Learn more about super visa insurance requirements. 

Can I pay for super visa insurance monthly? 

Only visitors who arrived in Canada before August 2022 can continue paying their super visa insurance premiums monthly. That is, if they had already been on a monthly payment plan with their insurance company.

But as of August 2022, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will not accept super visa insurance unless it has been paid in full. The IRCC can reject a visa application or deny entry to Canada if this condition is not met.

This rule applies to anyone who has not entered Canada yet, including:

  • Those with pending applications
  • Those whose applications were approved but who have not arrived in Canada yet
  • Those who are just starting the application process
  • Those who have not started their applications

For instance, let’s say you already purchased super visa insurance on a monthly payment plan, but your visa application is still in progress. In this case, the IRCC would not accept your insurance policy and you should contact your insurer or broker to have your monthly policy switched to a full payment.

But visitors who are already in Canada and already paying for their insurance monthly will not be affected. They can continue to pay their premiums as usual without fear that their visa would be revoked for this reason.

Additionally, visitors who are already in Canada and who apply to extend their visa can still arrange for monthly payments with their insurance provider.

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Can a relative buy super visa insurance for me? 

Canadian citizens and permanent residents can buy a policy on behalf of their visiting parents or grandparents. In fact, many people choose to do just that.

Under the super visa program, Canadian citizens and permanent residents are considered sponsors of their foreign relatives. Hence, they are financially responsible for the visit. This includes any unexpected costs that go above and beyond medical insurance coverage. Most people who sponsor relatives will simply purchase the insurance policy for them accordingly.

Read more about buying travel insurance for visiting parents or grandparents. 

But this should not be seen as a way to try to acquire a monthly payment plan. Just because a relative buys the insurance plan from within Canada, it doesn’t mean that you can avoid paying for the full 12-month period upfront.

As mentioned above, the IRCC will not accept insurance paid in monthly installments if the insured is a new applicant or has not already arrived in Canada. This is the case no matter where the one who purchased the policy is located.

As of August 2022, Canadian super visa insurance policies can only be paid in full.

How much does super visa insurance cost?

As with most insurance premiums, the cost of super visa insurance varies depending on several factors:

  • Age
  • Health status
  • Policy length
  • Coverage amount
  • Deductible options

On average, this type of coverage can cost anywhere from just over $1,000 to upwards of $1,500 per year. However, the cost can also be well over $2,000, again depending on the factors listed above.

Individuals with pre-existing medical conditions — such as diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, heart conditions, lung conditions, etc. — can typically expect their premiums to be higher.

Learn more about pre-existing medical conditions

When buying travel insurance for parents, you need to disclose any pre-existing medical conditions they may have.

Is super visa insurance refundable?

Yes, you can get a refund if you need to cancel your policy. But doing so is not advisable outside of specific circumstances.

As mentioned above, you do need supervisa insurance for your visitor’s visa to remain valid. Without this insurance coverage, your visa could be revoked.

But there are some scenarios where the policy may need to be cancelled. For instance, if your parents or grandparents on a super visa leave Canada earlier than expected. In this case, they would not need medical coverage for the original period of time. So, they can cancel their insurance and receive a partial refund.

A refund is also warranted if someone’s application for super visa is denied. If they had already purchased insurance but they are unable to come to Canada, they can receive a full refund for their unused policy.

There are dozens of scenarios that could play out in this regard. If you’re unsure about your options, it’s best to speak with a Canadian insurance expert who can guide you.

How long does it take to get super visa insurance? 

You can apply for super visa insurance in a matter of minutes with PolicyAdvisor. We give you the option to apply online or over the phone with one of our expert advisors. So, you’re free to apply however is easiest for you.

In most cases, you’re approved as soon as you complete the application process. It’s quite fast and simple to get the coverage you need. Getting approved for the actual visa itself is much more complex and takes far more time.

How to get super visa insurance 

You can apply through an authorized Canadian broker, like PolicyAdvisor, or directly from Canadian insurance providers such as Manulife, Tugo, Group Medical Services (GMS), Allianz, 21st Century Travel Insurance Limited, or Destination Canada.

If you have questions about what kind of travel insurance you or your family members need, contact PolicyAdvisor for expert advice.

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Call us at 1-888-601-9980 or book time with our licensed experts.
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The information provided herein is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal or financial advice.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • New super visa holders must pay their super visa insurance premiums in full as of August 2022
  • There is no change for super visa holders who are already in Canada
  • The process to get super visa insurance is very easy and usually approved instantly

By Jiten Puri
CEO & Founder, Insurance Advisor, LLQP
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