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Insights & advice

What happens to my benefits if I leave my job?

March 2022 – 15 min read

Key takeaways

  • Under most group benefits plans, you’re only covered when you’re working for the employer

  • There are benefits to making a job or career change

  • Some group benefits providers allow you to switch from your group plan to a personal plan

  • Provinces provide certain services and supplies for eligible residents

  • There are some instances where it’s worth the cost to buy personal health insurance

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Your employer benefits after leaving a job

You could have been let go, laid-off or are quitting your current job to take a new position. In all cases, it’s likely benefits with your current employer for you and your dependents will end. These include:

  • Health, dental and vision coverage
  • Life, disability, critical illness and accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) insurance
  • Pension and retirement savings plans  

You’ll need to plan to replace them. 

When employer benefits end after leaving a job

Under most group benefits plans, you’re only covered when you’re working for the employer. 

If you resign, your benefits normally end after your resignation notice period ends. 

If you’re fired, your benefits may end immediately. 

If you’ve been laid-off, your benefits may continue for a certain period of time. Ask your employer to confirm. 

Keeping benefits after you leave a job

Some group benefits providers allow you to switch from your group plan to a personal “rollover” health and dental plan. You’ll likely need to be covered under your current employer’s group plan, and sign-up as soon as your coverage ends. 

For example, when Corey retires from his job, he’ll lose his workplace benefits. Healthy and active, he plans to rock climb in the summer and ski in the winter. Because Corey believes he’ll need regular massage therapy and physiotherapy and is aware other health concerns may crop up as he ages, before his previous coverage ends, he applies for personal health insurance so he has the necessary coverage he might need.

The above example is for illustrative purposes only. Situations will vary according to your province/territory and specific circumstances.

What’s covered by your provincial/territorial health insurance?

Provinces provide certain services and supplies for eligible residents, such as:

Is personal health insurance worth it?

If you or someone in your family currently has expensive prescriptions or relies on medical equipment, and those costs aren’t covered under your provincial/territorial plan, personal health insurance may be worth it. 

Some people are also more comfortable knowing they’re covered if something unexpected happens to their health.

If you are a Quebec resident, personal health insurance can provide supplemental coverage to the prescription drug coverage provided under the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) basic prescription drug insurance plan. Personal health insurance doesn’t remove your obligation to have drug coverage through the RAMQ drug public plan, through your employer or an association you are a member of or through the employer of your spouse.

This information is general in nature, and is intended for informational purposes only. For specific situations you should consult the appropriate legal, accounting or tax advisor.

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