December 15, 2017 10:43 am
Updated: December 15, 2017 12:11 pm

Insurance provider cancels policy, leaves Toronto man stranded in German hospital

A Toronto man remains in intensive care in Frankfurt, Germany after being denied a medical evacuation by his insurance provider. As Sean O'Shea reports, RBC cancelled his policy citing inaccuracies in the medical application leaving his family with more than $100,000 in bills, and the tab is growing.


Ali Davari was enroute to a German airport in December 1 for a return flight to Canada but didn’t make it.

The 84-year-old Toronto man fell down, but was able to get up. However, later that day, Davari was rushed to hospital for surgery to repair bleeding in his head.

Two weeks later, Davari remains in a medically-induced coma in an intensive care unit in Frankfurt. He is unable to travel home on a commercial flight.

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“Honestly I don’t know what to do,” said his son Kevin, who contacted Global News as a last resort, after being told by the insurance company that his father’s travel health policy was cancelled.

“The travel insurance … is denying any assistance after they found out about the airlift cost,” Davari said, referring to a medical evacuation back to Canada.

READ MORE: Think you don’t need insurance when travelling in Canada? Think again

Typically, insurance companies want to repatriate injured or sick clients back to Canada, despite the high cost of a jet and medical staff, so that a policy holder can recover here, where most costs are covered by the public health care system.

Before his one-week trip to Germany, Davari’s daughter purchased out-of-country medical coverage for her father from RBC Insurance. She answered a medical questionnaire on his behalf.

Bur following Davari’s medical incident, RBC Insurance cancelled the policy and declined to pay any of the medical costs, including hospital charges and a medical evacuation.

RBC won’t discuss details of the case publicly.

READ MORE: Las Vegas shooting underscores need for travel insurance

“We are very sorry to hear that Mr. Davari was hospitalized and we sympathize with his family during this difficult time. While we can’t comment on this particular claim because of privacy rules, we do want to let our clients know that we fully investigate all claims and make decisions consistently and fairly. In fact, RBC Insurance pays 98 per cent of all travel claims,” wrote Greg Skinner, corporate communications director with RBC Insurance.

“The vast majority of our clients complete the questionnaire correctly, receive the coverage they need and pay the correct premiums for their coverage,” RBC said.

Davari’s family said they completed the insurance application for their father honestly, and paid for  the company’s premium “gold” policy.

They say they believed RBC Insurance would honour its policy.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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