Insurance & Coverage for Foster Parents
There are three groupings of coverage for foster parents:
- Insurance that must be purchased
- Insurance and legal representation provided for free by the ministry or Delegated Aboriginal Agency
- Insurance that's optional
- Homeowner/Tenant insurance – this covers accidental damage to your own property and normally includes coverage for property owned by children in your care.
- Automobile – minimum $1m third party liability coverage, however $3m third party liability and comprehensive coverage is recommended. Deliberate damage to your vehicle caused by children in care can be covered under comprehensive coverage, and the deductible (but not premium increases) can be recovered from the Ministry or Delegated Aboriginal Agency if applicable.
Quick Tip: Claims Process
- Contact your own insurance broker for damage to your property or an Autoplan broker for damage to your vehicle.
Master Insurance Program
The Master Insurance Program (MIP) provides $2 million per occurrence commercial general liability insurance to all foster parents authorized by way of a valid agreement with the Ministry or a Delegated Aboriginal Agency to provide residential care for a child. All services specified in the agreement during the term of such agreement are insured operations. This policy protects you against “third party” liability claims of bodily injury and property damage where such losses were unintentionally caused by you in carrying out foster care services.
A “third party” is anybody outside your family and for the purpose of this policy that includes the child in your care. For example if you injured yourself your medical costs are not covered under this policy, but if you accidently injured the child in your care or anybody else outside your family, those claims would be covered. Similarly, your own property is not covered under MIP (but is covered by your homeowner/tenant policy and the Property Rider), but property belonging to other people is covered under this policy if you accidentally damaged it in carrying out the foster care services. It does not cover losses caused by the child in your care, however there might be related allegations against you that could be covered. It’s important to contact the MIP broker Aon Reed Stenhouse when there is an incident.
Coverage is automatic and is paid for by the Ministry. You will not receive a copy of the policy from the broker but you can access it at the link below along with a copy of the certificate of insurance.
- Commercial General Liability Policy (PDF)
- Certificate of Liability Insurance (PDF)
- Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
Quick Tips: Claims Processes
Contact the MIP broker, Aon Reed Stenhouse, as soon as possible even if you’re not sure that the incident is covered by this policy.
- In Victoria call (250) 388-7577
- Outside Victoria call toll-free (877) 388-7577
- Email MIP@aon.ca
Legal representation for malicious claims of abuse brought by or on behalf of a foster child is provided by the Province by way of a Caregiver Legal Representation Agreement (CLRA). It provides for the reimbursement of legal defense costs for either civil or criminal allegations of sexual and/or intentional abuse where signatories to Family Care Home Agreements are wrongly accused and have to defend themselves.
This is not insurance but is a form of indemnity provided to each signatory to a Family Care Home Agreement. Because this coverage is not insurance, CLRA documentation is not provided to Family Care Home Agreement signatories until there is a valid claim.
Quick Tips: Claims Process
- If you are a signatory to a Family Care Home Agreement and a foster child or their legal representative has brought an allegation of abuse against you which you believe is unfounded, first apply for Legal Aid and then, if refused assistance, contact your ministry social worker.
The Property Rider covers damage to your own property and possessions caused by a child in your care. The Property Rider is a supplement to existing homeowner/tenant’s insurance policies required to be held by foster parents. The limit of coverage is $500,000 per occurrence for both house and contents, and coverage follows the underlying homeowner/tenant policy wording.
Coverage is automatic and is paid for by the Province for foster parents who have an agreement directly with either the ministry or a Delegated Aboriginal Agency.
- Property Rider Insurance Overview (formerly Insurance Booklet)
- Property Rider FAQ (formerly Questions and Answers Booklet)
Quick Tips: Claims Processes
If a foster child has damaged property you own, rent, or occupy contact the BC Federation of Foster Parent Associations (BCFFPA) for claims advice.
- Call 1-800-663-9999
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
The coverage described above may not cover all risks. Foster parents are encouraged to discuss their personal situation with their insurance broker and, if applicable, purchase any additional insurance which they consider necessary. Some examples might be specialty insurance for an ATV, watercraft, or property endorsements for things like artwork or jewelry.
For information about optional WorksafeBC or Extended Health, Dental, Life and Critical Illness Insurance please review the BC Federation of Foster Parent Associations website.