Highlights of Noteworthy Decisions

Decision 2741 17
26/04/2021
G. Dee - D. Thomson - M. Ferrari
  • Executive officers
  • Independent operator (truck driver)
  • Personal coverage (intention)

The employer obtained coverage, including optional personal coverage for its president, in 2010. The coverage was required by the larger transportation firm with which the employer, a small trucking company, did all of its business. Following an audit in 2013, the employer cancelled the personal coverage and requested the return of its premiums, as well as $5,000 for financial and emotional stress. The employer asserted that it never elected to receive personal coverage for the president. The ARO denied the request for the premiums and $5,000.

The employer's appeal was dismissed.
The evidence, including the forms submitted to the Board, demonstrated that the president had validly elected to obtain optional personal coverage with the knowledge of the employer. The president believed he had to obtain the optional coverage to continue getting work from the transportation firm. Although proof of earnings was provided by the transportation firm and not the employer, this did not invalidate coverage. The Board had the discretion to determine if the proof of earnings provided were acceptable.
The employer and the president received the benefit of insurance coverage being in place for the president during the relevant period. It would be unfair to the Board and contrary to common insurance principles for the employer to receive reimbursement of premiums once the period of coverage expired.
The Tribunal did not have the authority to award damages for financial and emotional stress caused by the Board.