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BC’s New Years Resolution – Reduced MSP Premiums

Victoria/Fraser Valley – In the 2016 Provincial Budget, the Province announced changes to MSP premiums that improve fairness and affordability.

  • By January 2017, approximately 40% of British Columbia families will pay reduced premiums or no premiums at all.
  • Once the changes have been implemented, an estimated two million British Columbians will pay no premiums.
  • The changes address a longstanding inequity in how premiums are calculated for couples. Previously, two-adult households paid less than two adults living separately – they paid $136 per month versus $150 per month.
  • In 2017, the calculation of MSP premiums for each family will depend on the number of adults living in the household. The monthly rate for each household will be based on the number of adults, who will each pay $75 per month.
  • In addition, effective Jan. 1, 2017, children are eliminated from all MSP premiums.
  • This change particularly benefits single parents who will no longer pay MSP premiums for their children. For example, a single parent with two children will only be charged the single adult rate, rather than the three-person rate they previously paid – saving this family $900 per year.
  • The Province is also investing an additional $76 million annually to enhance premium assistance, helping more lower-income families, seniors and individuals qualify for reduced MSP premiums.

Effective 2017, reduced premiums may apply for:

  • A single adult earning up to $42,000 (previously $30,000)
  • A single parent with one child earning up to $45,000 (previously up to $33,000)
  • A couple earning up to $45,000 (previously $33,000)
  • A single senior earning up to $45,000 (previously $33,000)
  • A single parent with two children earning up to $48,000 (previously up to $36,000)
  • A couple with two children earning up to $51,000 (previously up to $39,000)
  • A senior couple earning up to $51,000 (previously $39,000)
  • The Province has created an online eligibility calculator to help British Columbians estimate whether they qualify for premium assistance: https://extranet.gov.bc.ca/forms/gov/health/msppa.html

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