Since tax time is just around the corner, I thought this would be a good time to talk about “Taxable Benefits” and benefit coverage.
All BC residents are required to carry the government sponsored Medical Services Plan (MSP) (care cards) for themselves and their family members. Currently, for CUPE 1091 members, the monthly premiums for this coverage are paid by the employer (you will not see a deduction on your payslip). However, you are paying tax on the premium the employer pays on your behalf. This taxable amount is added to your T4 slip at the end of the year as a “Taxable Benefit”.
Only one person in the family should carry this coverage. Unlike an extended health or dental benefits, there is no “dual coverage” needed. However, sometimes we discover that both spouses in the family are carrying the same coverage through their employer. This means that the BC Government is receiving double the money for a single benefit, and the second employer is never notified if duplicate coverage begins.
Here is how to check if the government is “double dipping” on your MSP coverage:
1. Look at your bi-weekly payroll notification for the first deposit of the month. On the upper right hand side you will see your active benefits listed (MED SING/COUP/FAM). This means that you are currently receiving this coverage through your employer.
2. Have your spouse/partner check their own payroll notification to see if they are also carrying this coverage.
If you find that you have “duplicate” coverage, please contact me as soon as possible at (604) 952-5357.