What happens to benefits if I, or my spouse, pass away?
The surviving spouse can contact ARTA’s office at 1-855-212-2400 to arrange for an update of information and if applicable change your coverage level (e.g. going from couple to single under your extended health care plan option). It is necessary for you to provide a death certificate, written notice for the change in coverage level change, and written notice of the membership change if the surviving spouse was not the ARTA member.
Is Out-of-Province/Out-of-Country emergency travel insurance included under the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
Yes, if you have travel coverage, and are outside of your province of residence or outside of Canada, your emergency medical expenses may be covered.
If I take the ARTA Extended Health Care coverage without Emergency Travel coverage, can I add Emergency Travel at a later date?
You will have to submit evidence of good health if you wish to add the Emergency Travel benefit after your qualifying period (i.e. if it is more than 60 days following termination of your group benefits coverage).
When is my ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan coverage effective?
If you are currently covered under a group benefits plan, your coverage is effective the day following termination of coverage under your group plan – there can be no lag in coverage.
If you are a late entrant, your coverage is effective on the 1st of the month following confirmation of coverage.
Do I need to be a member of the Alberta Retired Teachers’ Association (ARTA) to enrol in the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan? If so, is there a cost for membership?
Yes, you must be an ARTA member to participate in the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan. Your employment history and pension determine your type of membership, what your membership fees are and the method of payment. For more information, please contact ARTA toll-free at 1-855-212-2400 (extension 1).
Can I pay my Retiree Health Benefits premiums with a credit card?
ARTA only accepts premiums payments via direct bank withdrawal. Credit card companies charge processing fees with each transaction, and as a non-profit organization, ARTA operates with cost-effectiveness in mind. All revenues generated by ARTA’s Retiree Health Benefits Plan are used to improve the plan and increase value for members. By diverting these revenues to pay processing fees, the strength of the plan would be lessened.
In addition to the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan, what other programs are available to me as an ARTA member?
- The ARTA discount program which offers discounts with a large number of businesses and services
- ARTA news&views magazine
- ARTAfacts email newsletter
- Scholarships for family members
- Access to special rates from ARTA’s home and auto insurance partner, TW Insurance
- Access to a Life Insurance plan specifically for ARTA members
What is ARTA’s fiscal year for membership?
ARTA’s fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30. Prior to your Education Sector membership expiring, ARTA will send out a notice of renewal for fees. Public and Private Sector members pay their membership fees monthly, so ARTA will automatically send a new membership card for the new fiscal year.
What is Least Cost Alternative (LCA) and how does it relate to my drug coverage?
ARTA believes that prescription drugs are extremely effective in treating many medical conditions, and it is important that the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan receives the best value for the prescription drugs members purchase; therefore, the plan includes a Least Cost Alternative provision. This means that if your doctor prescribes a brand name drug and there is an approved interchangeable generic version, the plan will pay to the equivalent cost of the generic product. You may purchase the higher cost alternative; however, you are responsible for paying the difference in price.
To find out about the coverage of specific drugs, please call 1-855-444-ARTA (2782) with the DIN number which is found on the prescription label.
Who is considered a ‘dependant’ under the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
Dependant children may include natural children, legally adopted children or children living with the adopting parents during a period of probation, stepchildren, children under legal guardianship, and foster children of the member or the member’s spouse.
To be considered a dependant, the child must be unmarried, not employed on a regular and full-time basis, and under 21 years of age. A child up to the age of 25 will be considered a dependant if in full-time attendance at an accredited school, college or university and is dependant on you for support, including students attending school outside their normal province of residence.
A dependant child who is beyond any limiting age and, who is mentally or physically disabled and is incapable of self-sustaining employment and who is wholly dependant upon you for support and maintenance, is also eligible.
What does ‘evidence of insurability’ mean?
This means that you are required to complete a medical questionnaire and may, as a follow-up, be asked to have a medical examination. This is required if you are eligible to apply for benefits, but do not submit your application to enrol in an ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan that includes Emergency Travel Insurance within 60 days of losing your group extended health care benefits.
How do I change my contact information with ARTA?
Update it in your MyARTA account, or call the ARTA head office toll-free at 1-855-444-2782 (toll-free).
Is there one card for everything related to ARTA?
No, there are two separate cards. As of January 1, 2021, you will have one card that is both your ARTA Membership card as well as your ARTA Benefits ID card.
There is also a discount program card for the Boom program.
Use your ARTA Membership card when speaking with staff in the ARTA office or with partners of ARTA (e.g. TW Insurance Brokers), as well as to access your benefits coverage. The ARTA Member ID card has your Benefit ID number which should be provided to your pharmacist and other health care professionals. Use this card when submitting your claims, when speaking with an ARTA Staff member, and to access your MyARTA Account.
Note: If you are covered under either the Total Health or Ultimate Health benefits plan and you have a medical emergency while travelling, the travel emergency medical contact numbers are on the back of your ARTA Member ID card.
Can I check on my benefits coverage and submit claims on-line?
Yes – visit myarta.net to access your benefits coverage and to submit claims online.
I have the Alberta Coverage for Seniors plan. Why would I want to enrol in the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
The Alberta Coverage for Seniors plan covers many commonly used drugs; however, you pay a portion of the cost which would be covered by the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan, which also includes coverage for many other supplies and services, such as Emergency Travel Coverage, physiotherapy, and prescription glasses. Applying for the ARTA benefits plan would be dependent on overall health needs.
If you require more coverage than what your provincial plan offers, contact the ARTA Member Support Centre at 1-855-444-2782.
How and when do I join the Alberta Coverage for Seniors plan?
Please contact Alberta Blue Cross 1-877-644-9992 for information regarding the Alberta Coverage for Seniors plan as they administer this plan on behalf of Alberta Health. You may also find information here.
Note: You must register your coverage at with your pharmacy(ies). The ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan is second payor to the Alberta Seniors’ Drug Plan.
Can ARTA provide information on my pension?
No. ARTA is often confused with the Alberta Teachers’ Retirement Fund (ATRF). Please contact their office at 1-800-661-9582 if you have questions regarding your pension.
If I have questions about ARTA or the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan, whom do I contact?
Alberta Retired Teachers’ Association (ARTA)
15505 137 Avenue NW
Edmonton AB T5V 1R9
Phone: 780-822-2400 or toll-free (Canada only) 1-855-212-2400 (extension 1)
What is an Interactive form?
Interactive forms allow you to enter information directly into the document from your computer. Some browsers have a built in feature that lets you do this without downloading the PDF, others will require you to download the PDF and open it with Adobe. Please make sure you are using Adobe 7.0 or newer.
Can forms be filled out on-line?
It depends – some forms are “interactive”, meaning you can enter information in your browser or on your computer using Adobe PDF viewer. These interactive forms can then be printed. From there you can sign and send them off by mail or fax.
My deceased spouse would have met the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan eligibility criteria. Am I eligible to join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan as a surviving spouse of a retiree who would have otherwise been eligible?
If you can provide supporting documentation that your deceased spouse would have otherwise been eligible and you are age 55 or older, you are eligible to participate and enrol without evidence of good health in the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan as long as you apply for coverage within your qualifying period.
I meet the eligibility criteria, and I have retired but I have returned to work. Can I join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
Since you have met the eligibility criteria, if you have benefit coverage through your employer’s benefit plan (in your new job) which provides similar benefits, including Emergency Travel Insurance, you will be eligible to join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan without providing evidence of good health, provided you apply within 60 days of the termination date for benefits you have through your current place of employment.
I am retired, my coverage under my employer’s group benefits plan terminated more than 60 days ago, but I am covered under my spouse’s employer’s group benefits plan. Will I be eligible to join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan without evidence of insurability once coverage under my spouse’s plan terminates?
Yes, you can join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan within 60 days of the termination of your spouse’s employer-sponsored benefit plan if it provides similar benefits, including Emergency Travel Insurance, without providing evidence of good health. If you apply for coverage after this 60-day period from the date your spouse’s employer benefit plan coverage terminated, then evidence of good health will be required, and you may be declined for Extended Health Care and Emergency Travel Insurance coverage.
I am a retired teacher and my group benefits terminated more than 60 days ago. My spouse and I currently have no benefit coverage. Can I join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
Yes, but if you are now retired and if your group benefits terminated more than 60 days ago, you are considered to be a late entrant and you will have to provide evidence of good health, meaning your coverage may be declined.
I am retired and I meet the eligibility criteria and my group benefits terminated less than 60 days ago. My spouse and I currently have no benefit coverage. Can I join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
Yes, you can join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan within 60 days of the termination date of your spouse’s employer-sponsored benefit plan if it provides similar benefits, without providing evidence of insurability. If you apply for Total or Ultimate Health coverage after this 60-day period, evidence of insurability will be required, and you may be limited to enrolment in the Health Wise or Health Wise Plus plans, which do not include the Emergency Travel Insurance.
I am about to retire and my group benefits are about to terminate, I meet the eligibility criteria, can I join the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
Yes, your application must be received by ARTA within 60 days from the date your coverage terminates. You are not required to submit evidence of insurability if you wish to enrol in a plan with an Emergency Travel Insurance (Total Health or Ultimate Health).
What eligibility criteria apply to Public and Private Sector retirees with respect to the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
If you think you may be eligible to enrol in the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan, please contact the ARTA office toll-free at 1-855-212-2400 (extension 1).
This includes people who are retired from UNA, ATU, ATB, the Calgary Fire Department, CPA, CHAPA and retirees who are receiving pensions from LAPP, MEPP, PSPP, SFPP or if you are a retired MLA or Judge & Masters in Chambers.
What eligibility criteria apply to Education Sector retirees with respect to the ARTA Retiree Benefits Plan?
Eligibility criteria for are:
- Retired teacher who contributed to ATRF for at least five (5) years;
- Permanent resident of Canada;
- Covered by provincial/territorial health care in your province/territory of residence; and
- Must be a member of ARTA.
Note: The spouse of a deceased person is eligible without age restriction, providing the person would have met the eligibility criteria above.