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Thread: To Mr Narender; New immigrant insurance

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    2

    Default To Mr Narender; New immigrant insurance

    What are the health insurance options for my mother aged 67
    who will move to the US from India on an immigrant visa?

    1.Will she be eligible for any federal/state insurance benefits like medicare?
    Or will she have to buy private health insurance?

    2.Is Private health insurance offered for PRs different in coverage
    from the one for temp visitors?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Plano, TX
    Posts
    3,435

    Default

    New immigrants are NOT eligible for benefits like Medicare.

    Medicare has two parts: Part A and Part B.
    Part A covers major things like hospitalizations, surgeries etc.
    Part B covers other things like prescription drugs, dr. office visits etc. Within Part B, there are different levels of coverage: From A to J. You can say, BA to BJ.

    Regular US persons (citizens, residents etc.) can get Medicare Part A if they have worked in US for 40 quarters (10 years for most people) and are above the age of 65+.
    New immigrants can't get that. If they have stayed in US for 5 years as greencard holder, and above 65+, they can BUY medicare from the government.

    Part B has to be purchased by everyone, even those who are US citizens, born in US and have worked in US all their life. This is commonly referred as Medicare Supplement Insurance. (Again, the eligibility to buy this one is also same as Part A.)

    In short, new immigrants can't get Medicare. Therefore, they will have to purchase private health insurance. However, as everyone in US who has been here for long time in US will go to Medicare at the age of 65, regular domestic health insurance companies like Aetna, Cigna, Blue Cross, Fortis, Unicare (and thousands others) don't sell health insurance to 65+.

    New immigrants are entering the system from the middle. Then how to fill the gap?

    Therefore, new immigrants have to purchase essentially the same type of insurance plans that are purchased by visitors. Actually, visitors insurance is popularly used term. However, it is the same temporary insurance for anyone who comes to US new or temporarily on any visa, or even new immigrant, who is non US citizen, that can't get insurance from regular domestic health insurance companies in US.
    Only difference is duration for which people would want to buy the coverage. While visitors would buy coverage for short period, new immigrant would buy for longer duration. Keeping that in mind, we have dedicated page just for new immigrants at https://www.insubuy.com/new-immigrant-insurance/

    Of course, any such gap filling insurance would NOT cover any pre-existing conditions, general physical check ups etc. It is like this, "something is better than nothing". You are buying it because there is no other option.

    Also, you can't get other benefits like Medicaid etc. Before they immigrate to the US, you would have signed an affidavit of support form I-864 (http://www.immihelp.com/forms/showform.do?form=i-864) that you are going to take care of all their expenses and they will not be burden on government etc, etc.

    If they now try to utilize anything like Medicaid because of old age, no or low income etc, government can actually send the bills to their sponsor for reimbursement. This voids the purpose of trying to utilize anything like Medicaid and it may also adversely affect your ability to sponsor more people in future.
    Thanks & Regards

    Toll Free: (866) INSU- BUY
    Local: (972) 985-4400
    Fax: (972) 767-4470
    Website: https://www.insubuy.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    2

    Default

    Thanks very much for an excellent answer, Mr Narendra.
    Does that mean if my mother has a problem involving a pre-existing condition during those 5 years, it will be catastrophic financially?

    I have a brother who is a expecting his canadian immigrant visa very soon and he can sponsor my mother for canada after he moves there. Can you
    tell me if the health insurance scenario would be better in canada for my mother (as a visitor as well as an immigrant)?

    Please advise as it is a critical decision for our family. Thanks again.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    You are right. Until you get Medicare, you will be on your own if something related to pre-existing condition occurs.

    While I am not an expert in Canadian insurance, at a high level, I know that Canadian residents can get public health benefits (I am not sure of waiting period, if any; age factor, if any.)

    For visitors to Canada, it would be same situation as visitors to USA as visitors to Canada are NOT eligible for public health benefits.
    Thanks & Regards

    Toll Free: (866) INSU- BUY
    Local: (972) 985-4400
    Fax: (972) 767-4470
    Website: https://www.insubuy.com

  5. #5

    Default Medical Insurance

    [QUOTE=narendra]New immigrants are NOT eligible for benefits like Medicare.
    ........

    Regular US persons (citizens, residents etc.) can get Medicare Part A if they have worked in US for 40 quarters (10 years for most people) and are above the age of 65+.
    New immigrants can't get that. If they have stayed in US for 5 years as greencard holder, and above 65+, they can BUY medicare from the government.


    Hello Narendra: I was a green card holder for 15 years, worked in well-paying jobs for more than 40 quarters (over 10 years). Then I had to go back for family reasons.
    Now, my son is sponsoring me for a GC. I am 65+. Please tell me where do I stand with respect to medical insurance coverage?

    Naina

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Dear Naina,

    I believe that you would be able to get Medicare as you have worked in US
    for 40 quarters.
    Thanks & Regards

    Toll Free: (866) INSU- BUY
    Local: (972) 985-4400
    Fax: (972) 767-4470
    Website: https://www.insubuy.com

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mindy
    Dear Naina,

    I believe that you would be able to get Medicare as you have worked in US
    for 40 quarters.

    Thanks very much for the response.

    Naina

  8. #8

    Default

    I learnt a lot of facts from this thread. Thank you all.

    Is Medicare only for those who worked for 40 quarters in USA?

    I know of a LOT of families where wifes are housewifes - either due to H4 visa or lack of opportunities or lack of education or due to small kids. They all are young (< 40) and would have never thought about Medicare. (I myselves never went this far and thought about Medicare). Do you think all those who are housewifes forever in USA will be eligible for Medicare once they become USC? Their husbands are in well paid jobs and would have worked in USA for more than 30 yrs by they time they reach 65. I am just curious to know.. Thank you all in advance..

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Plano, TX
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    Non working spouse can get medicare based on the work history of working spouse. That's why that is not a problem.
    Thanks & Regards

    Toll Free: (866) INSU- BUY
    Local: (972) 985-4400
    Fax: (972) 767-4470
    Website: https://www.insubuy.com

  10. #10

    Default

    Thank you Narendra for the clarification...

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