Medical Civil Liability

Professional Liability Insurance

Under review

Under the terms of the Regulation respecting professional liability insurance of physicians ensuing from the provisions of the Professional Code, a physician must hold and keep in force an insurance contract for this purpose or provide proof that his or her employer holds an insurance contract whose coverage expressly includes that physician and that the amount of the coverage is for the minimum amounts fixed in the Regulation. Membership in the Canadian Medical Protective Association (CMPA) also meets the Regulation’s requirements.

Two formulas are offered to physicians:

  • Protection offered by the CMPA – This protection is guaranteed on the basis of events. The Association will defend the physician  who is a member when the event occurs.
  • Protection offered by an insurance company – The company will insure the physician’s defence on the basis of the claim, if it is the physician’s insurer on the
    date the action is taken.

In both cases, the insurer pays the costs of the defence as well as the amount of the settlement or judgment, if applicable, within  the limits provided for in the insurance contract, if there are such limits.

However, if a physician was a member of the CMPA in 1995 and is the subject of legal action in 1996 for an act performed in 1994, the CMPA will not defend the physician, because he or she was not a member when  the event occurred. Furthermore, the insurer with whom the physician was insured in 1993, but not in 1996, will not defend him or her either, because he was no longer the physician’s insurer on the date of the claim.

Therefore it is essential that members of the CMPA, if indicated, provide for additional coverage for acts performed before they became members.