Insurance Tips – Assignment Vs. Non-Assignment

Author: Dr. Aisling Whitaker

In our series of dental reception basics, we will explain some of the most common topics that you need to know. In Canadian insurance, there are two options of how you can bill and collect the patient’s fees.

In either case, you can send the codes to the patient’s insurance digitally or via mail. The difference lies in who the insurance pays out.

Assignment

Also known as direct billing, assignment means that the insurance will pay the clinic directly. Here the patient will pay the clinic the amount that is not covered by their insurance policy, the co-payment.

For example, Nadia has 80% coverage for her treatment. The total cost is $100. The insurance will pay the clinic $80, so you will collect a $20 co-payment from the patient on the day of treatment.

Non Assignment

Non assignment means that the insurance will pay the patient directly. Here the patient will pay the clinic the full amount and they will receive the re-imbursement from their insurance.

For example, Nadia has 80% coverage for her treatment. The total cost is $100. She pays the clinic $100 and the insurance will re-imburse her $80.

Submitting the claims

When sending an eclaim or paper claim, you must confirm that you have chose the correct setting (assignment or non-assignment) prior to sending. Some insurance policies do not allow for assignment, so always read the resulting report to confirm who the insurance will pay to.

About the Author: Dr. Aisling Whitaker, BA (Hons) MSc PhD BDS (Hons)
Dr. Aisling Whitaker is a general dentist, owner of multiple dental clinics Bitehaus Dental in Toronto and CEO of Dental Hive. Dr. Whitaker is experienced in starting a dental clinic from scratch, developing marketing campaigns, office systems and building a strong team culture.