05/05/2015 04:34 EDT | Updated 05/05/2016 05:59 EDT

Insurance coverage extended for family caregivers in Manitoba homes

WINNIPEG - The Manitoba government is offering a new insurance benefit for people who lose a stay-at-home caregiver in a motor vehicle crash.

Until now, there was no insurance coverage to make up for the cost of replacing a stay-at-home parent or other caregiver who is killed in a crash.

A bill now before the legislature would pay up to $30,000 a year to cover replacement caregiver costs, depending on the amount of dependents involved.

Justice Minister Gord Mackintosh says the coverage will apply to parents, relatives of infirm or elderly adults, or anyone else who stays home to care for a relative.

The idea for the change came from insurance broker John McDonald, who says one of his clients was a woman who was killed in a crash on the Perimeter Highway south of Winnipeg.

McDonald says the woman's husband faced $4,000 a month in bills for child care.

"This enhanced benefit is an important recognition of the value of the unpaid work done by countless stay-at-home caregivers," Mackintosh said in a statement.