May 5, 2015 - Issue #14
We know that service providers licensed by FSCO enjoy the ease of collecting payments for listed expenses associated with services provided directly from insurance companies.
Now we know that their clients are appreciating the system too.
Traffic to FSCO's online Public Registry of Licensed Service Providers is steadily growing. The interest in the registry suggests that statutory accident benefits claimants are now checking the licensing status of Ontario healthcare providers before making a decision about where to get treatment.
Findings from on-site examinations
FSCO continues random and targeted on-site examinations of licensed service providers.
As the service provider sector is new to regulation, FSCO is using the examinations as an educational tool, providing help and advice to service providers on implementing best practices and procedures for day-to-day operations.
So far, FSCO has conducted examinations of over 250 service providers and the results indicate that the top areas for improvement are:
- Verifying client identification
- Written policies and procedures regarding practices
- Securing signature of OCF forms by client or provider
- Updating changes to original application in FSCO licensing system to reflect changes to the business
In future newsletters, FSCO will feature plain-language reviews about requirements in these areas, beginning with keeping application information up-to-date. As well, FSCO will publish a complete report on the examination findings later this year.
Annual Information Return and regulatory fees
If you are a service provider with a licence from FSCO as of December 31, 2014, you should have filed your first Annual Information Return (AIR) and paid the annual regulatory fee by March 31, 2015.
If you are a service provider that received a licence from FSCO in 2015 (between January 1 and March 31), you must pay an annual regulatory fee in addition to the fee paid at the time of application.
If you have not yet filed, please refer to communications sent from FSCO to your Principal Representative in March. Use the personalized web-link and instructions provided to complete the AIR, and pay the annual regulatory fee as soon as possible.
FSCO uses AIR information to assess risk in the service provider sector.
All service providers with a FSCO licence as of December 31, 2014 should have completed the AIR by March 31, 2015.
All service providers licensed by FSCO are required to pay the annual regulatory fee.
FSCO's awareness push
Recently, FSCO undertook a province-wide radio campaign to promote the new licensing regime. Editorials segments asking accident benefits claimants to consider treatment from licensed service providers reached over two million listeners.
The messages talked about licensing as a new protection for Ontario drivers helping to detect and remove fraudulent operators from the auto insurance system.
FSCO has added to the online Service providers Frequently Asked Questions
Find answers to new questions about:
Where to go for more information
For more information about service provider licensing:
Toll free: 1-800-668-0128