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Old 26.11.2015, 12:42
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Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provider?

I have been travelling for the past few weeks in Europe and so am not in CH and just changed health care providers online.

The new provider (CSS) has suggested that they will inform my previous provider (ÖKK) that I am changing healthcare insurance, but it is more ambiguous than last year when I changed, when it was made very clear that I would not need to contact my previous provider; ÖKK would cancel it on my behalf.

Since I have only changed providers once until now, is this a normal practice, meaning that I don't have to do anything? Or do I need to send a letter as well?

Thanks so much.
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Old 26.11.2015, 13:02
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

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I have been travelling for the past few weeks in Europe and so am not in CH and just changed health care providers online.

The new provider (CSS) has suggested that they will inform my previous provider (ÖKK) that I am changing healthcare insurance, but it is more ambiguous than last year when I changed, when it was made very clear that I would not need to contact my previous provider; ÖKK would cancel it on my behalf.

Since I have only changed providers once until now, is this a normal practice, meaning that I don't have to do anything? Or do I need to send a letter as well?

Thanks so much.
The new company has to confirm you are insured, however I would also send a registered letter to my original insurer.
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Old 27.11.2015, 00:17
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

Thanks. That is what I thought...just to be sure. Not sure what would happen if two companies think they are insuring you!
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Old 27.11.2015, 00:33
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

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Not sure what would happen if two companies think they are insuring you!
Ooh, I know! I switched from Assura to Helsana last year before the changing date. Helsana was responsible for sending the cancellation letter to Assura in time, but apparently they didn't, as I received 2015 monthly bills from both companies.

It was quite easy to see that Helsana were the ones who had screwed up, as my contract was signed and accepted by them before Nov. 30th, but they didn't send a letter to Assura until Dec. 18th or so. In the end the two companies agreed I would pay Assura for the month of January and Helsana from February on. I did lose out because medical bills from January couldn't be counted towards my Helsana franchise and basically lost them out of pocket. I'm sure I could have fought to have my deductibles for each company pro-rated, or something, but I really couldn't be bothered.

At least that was my experience.

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Old 28.11.2015, 14:51
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

Eek! Thanks for sharing. Have sent my own letter to cancel my insurance as I cannot afford to paid my insurance twice.
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Old 30.11.2015, 08:56
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

The rules are clear on this. It's the new insurer's responsibility to inform the previous insurer about the new insurance before the 31st December. If they don't, then the new insurer has to pay the difference in premiums (assuming the new premiums are lower). The relevant legal provision is Article 7(5) of the Health Insurance Law (KVG). See here for full details.

The old insurer will not accept the notification of the new insurance from you. It has to come from the new insurer.

You will never have to pay for double health insurance.
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Old 30.11.2015, 11:02
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

Very helpful! I thought I remember reading about that when I first moved here, but then forgot.

I did send my own letter as CSS said they would not (hmmm). So, I will follow up with them. I agree that the only way to prove that I have another health care insurance is for the new company to confirm it. Otherwise, one could just slip through the cracks and not pay for insurance.
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Old 01.12.2015, 00:03
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

You should send a letter to your previous insurance company.
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Old 01.12.2015, 00:10
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

In theory, the new insurer sends cancellation letter to the old insurer. In practice, if the former makes some sort of mistake on their part, the mess can ensue. We had to deal with wrongly terminated insurance for several months which occurred to be our new agent's fault. Eventually, it was sorted out but it took lots of pain.

We learnt hard way, DIY via comparis and cut the middle man that may do more damage than any good.
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Old 01.12.2015, 00:37
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

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In theory, the new insurer sends cancellation letter to the old insurer. In practice, if the former makes some sort of mistake on their part, the mess can ensue. We had to deal with wrongly terminated insurance for several months which occurred to be our new agent's fault. Eventually, it was sorted out but it took lots of pain.

We learnt hard way, DIY via comparis and cut the middle man that may do more damage than any good.

Same here.

For the cost of an extra registered letter, notify the old company.

You can then more comfortably ignore them as they argue about who lost which form or put which wrong number in which wrong box.
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Old 01.12.2015, 18:11
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

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Very helpful! I thought I remember reading about that when I first moved here, but then forgot.

I did send my own letter as CSS said they would not (hmmm). So, I will follow up with them. I agree that the only way to prove that I have another health care insurance is for the new company to confirm it. Otherwise, one could just slip through the cracks and not pay for insurance.
I switched to CSS and they didn't tell the old insurer in time. I got bills from both companies. I spoke to CSS customer support and they confirmed that I need not pay the bill for January. Then later in the year I got a court letter that CSS had filed a claim against me for unpaid premium for August, even though August had been paid. I then had to write several letters to CSS and they wrote back, with no apology or wording or anything much other than "Balance due 0.00". Then at the end of the *second* year when I switched to a new insurer they sent me a letter saying "We can't release you until you pay the outstanding amount for August". I then had to send copies of internet banking and again finally I got another letter "Balance 0.00". I filed a compliant on their website about how they had completely wasted my time and money and caused me a lot of stress without any apology and they responded with "Our policy is that we allow ourselves to make mistakes without any consideration for the customer."
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Old 13.02.2016, 21:27
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Re: Changing health insurance-who sends the cancellation letter to the previous provi

Thank you Jern for this useful post!!

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The rules are clear on this. It's the new insurer's responsibility to inform the previous insurer about the new insurance before the 31st December. If they don't, then the new insurer has to pay the difference in premiums (assuming the new premiums are lower). The relevant legal provision is Article 7(5) of the Health Insurance Law (KVG). See here for full details.

The old insurer will not accept the notification of the new insurance from you. It has to come from the new insurer.

You will never have to pay for double health insurance.
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