Foster family finds new insurer after Wawanesa cancels their plan
MONTREAL – A Montreal family who lost their insurance policy with Wawanesa for having too many foster children now has something to smile about.
Another insurance company has stepped in to save the day.
Lajoie Insurance has agreed to insure the family, saying it already insures hundreds of foster families.
It all started last week when Lisa and her husband received a nasty surprise in the mail.
Their insurance company, Wawanesa, cancelled their home insurance policy because they said they had too many foster children under one roof.
Lisa is raising three children of her own and since this past March, has taken in five foster children.
“I was floored,” said the Lasalle mother.
“I couldn’t believe a company could actually cancel a policy for having foster children.”
What was even more surprising to Lisa was that her foster children are being classified as high risk.
They are all under the age of five.
“My own children could be having the same kind of temper tantrums as a foster child,” she said.
“Are my child high risk? Will you insure them?”
Wawanesa refused an interview with Global News, but they did say it is part of their policy to insure homes with more than two foster kids.
Global News spoke to several other insurance companies and they all confirmed that every insurer has its own risk evaluation assessments.
According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, Wawanesa didn’t do anything wrong.
“There are no specific rules. Each company has different policies with regards to different risks,” said Pierre Babinsky of the Insurance Bureau of Canada.
“Insuring a family that has foster children basically will depend on that company’s history with that type of risk, whether there have been claims in the past.”
Wawanesa is not alone in limiting its overage to foster homes.
Lisa believes no family should be penalized for opening their homes and their hearts.
“These kids already have a rough start as it is,” she said.
“It really hard to think ahead we’re scrambling now with the kids and then have to scramble to find insurance company. They’re not foster kids they’re kids.”
Wawanesa has since apologized to the family but has refused to reverse their decision.
Instead, the insurance company gave the family just 60 extra days to find a new insurance company.
The family says it is paying a similar premium with their new insurer, Lajoie Insurance.