If you or a family member moves their residence, even temporarily, to a location outside the U.S. for work, study or simply to live, the move will result in your U.S. health insurance policy being cancelled. And it’s your responsibility to tell the carrier.
Here is an example of what you will find written in a U.S. health insurance policies regarding moving outside of the plan service area:
“The Subscriber is responsible to notify us of any changes that will affect his or her eligibility or that of Dependents for services or benefits under this Agreement. We must be notified of any changes as soon as possible but no later than within sixty (60) days of the event. This includes changes in address. Failure to notify us of persons no longer eligible for services will not obligate us to pay for such services. Acceptance of Premium for persons no longer eligible for services will not obligate us to pay for such services.”
There may be the occasional company which will keep your policy in force while you live abroad, but that is not the norm.
So what does this mean? If you intent is to move abroad, you will need to secure a Health Insurance plan which will provide you with coverage worldwide. Hospital care, emergency evacuation, doctor visits, lab and X-Ray, physical therapy, prescription coverage etc.
International Health Insurance from companies like GeoBlue (affiliate of the Blue Cross / Blue Shied companies) provides comprehensive global medical insurance for anyone working, studying or living anywhere worldwide. GeoBlue Quote.
If you move abroad and continue to pay your U.S. health insurance premiums thinking by doing so will continue your coverage. If a you become ill or have an accident and submit a claim, the companies claims department typically investigates all claims which arrive from outside the U.S. If they find you have been living abroad, they will most likely deny the claim and reimburse the premiums from the time you moved outside their service area.
If you have been able to keep your domestic coverage and fly back to the U.S. urgently seeking care, again most U.S. health insurance companies will investigate, and if they find you have been living abroad, the claim will most likely be denied.
This article is written simply to help you understand the “small print” of the U.S. carriers and how a misunderstanding can cost you dearly while working, studying or living outside the U.S. borders.
Find the right international medical plan for your unique needs.
Please feel free to contact me anytime with questions, I’ll be happy to help.