1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Obama's LEGAL immigration reform.

    What does it mean? Listen to November 21 conference call recording. Subscribe to Our YouTube channel to be notified as soon as the recording is posted.

Medicare and SS benefits for older immigrants

Discussion in 'US Citizenship' started by kashinath, Apr 12, 2004.

  1. kashinath

    kashinath Registered Users (C)

    One of the thing that we always think about is having sufficient medical coverage for our dependents who are coming from India.

    If your parents come here on a GC you have sponsored, are they eligible for Medicare assuming they are above 62 yrs old and retired?.

    What does this cover and is there any cost associated with it?

    How does one apply for this?

    Once they become citizens, will they get anything from Social Security even though they have not worked in the USA?

    And one last question which is probably not relevant here but what is the minimum period they have to be in the US to not loose GC?.
     
  2. nkm-oct23

    nkm-oct23 Registered Users (C)

    Medicare is available only if one pays into the system by paying medicare taxes as a part of their employment in the US. Those who never worked in the US can "buy" medicare. Check medicare's website for more details.

    Similarly social security is only available to those who pay SS taxes as part of their employment in the US.

    An important point to remember is that immigrants not become public charge, that is why you as a sponsor sign the legally binding affidavit of support.
     
  3. dsam

    dsam Registered Users (C)

    [

    []One of the thing that we always think about is having sufficient medical coverage for our dependents who are coming from India.

    If your parents come here on a GC you have sponsored, are they eligible for Medicare assuming they are above 62 yrs old and retired?.

    No. Because they have not contributed anything in the form of medicare tax (1.45% + 1.45% employer paid). They may be eligible to buy-in after 5 years when they become citizens.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    What does this cover and is there any cost associated with it?
    If they are allowed to buy-in , it costs ~$300-400 per person per month at present (as against $ 67 for medicare (who worked and contributed) eligible Americans currently.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    How does one apply for this?
    After 5 plus years, apply to medicare/CMS
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Once they become citizens, will they get anything from Social Security even though they have not worked in the USA?
    No. Again because they did not work & contribute to SS taxes (6.2% + 6.2%).
    They may be eligible for Medicaid (welfare) - for indigent - in some states. It depends on the state law.

    The change in INS law in 1996 made it very strict and limited all medica/other benefits to immigrants. You are responsible for their medical care and maintenance for at least several years or even indefinitely.
    You can buy a visitors health insurance policy (with high deductibles) for catastrophic coverage that can be extended at least upto 3 years or even more. It does not cover pre-existing illnesses. your premiums rise if they fall sick or develop any chronic conditions (like high BP, diabetes or heart problems).
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     
  4. rtk

    rtk Registered Users (C)

    dsam

    i dont think you are completely accurate in your assessments. senior citizen green card holders ARE eleigible for medicare. it all depends on your income level, etc. also it is approved on a case-by-case basis thru the county or local district (not state) that you live in. so for instance, if your parents live in arlington county in virginia they will need to be approved by arlington county first to be eligible.
     
  5. nkm-oct23

    nkm-oct23 Registered Users (C)

    Re: dsam

    You are not eligible for the FREE Medicare services if you have not paid into the medicare system for at least 10 years. It is possible to pay for and receive care under medicare system, just like any other medical insurance.
     
  6. kashinath

    kashinath Registered Users (C)

    Re medicare

    I believe one can get Medicaid which is not the same as Medicare. If you have no funds avaialble to you in the US and are a Senior and you have a GC, you can get Medicaid, which is a provided by the county/State.

    This is different from Medicare...
     
  7. dsam

    dsam Registered Users (C)

    Re: Re: Re medicare

    No. The above statement does not apply to immigrants.

    It is true medicaid is different from medicare.

    Medicaid is medical care program provided by states for the indigent (poor people generally on welfare) irrespective of age. Only criterion for eligibility is income and though it is a state program , large part of the funding comes from federal govt. States can make up their own rules for eligibility and the range of benefits differ from state to state. It is free - no premiums - though some states are starting spend-down requirements and also limiting the total duration (like 3 or 5 yeras)

    Medicare is a federal program - same premiums (i think it is $67 per month this year) and same benefits all over USA - but only for those over 65 or disabled and who worked and contributed medicare taxes for at least 40 quarters - irrespective of income (even Bill Gates & Warren Buffett are eligible at 65 or if disabled).

    No immigrant (except "qualified" - like refugees etc) is eligible for medicaid for at least 5 years and even after 5 years , states are not obligated to provide medicaid for LPRs. Some states may do but probably few do (in these days of budget deficits and resource crunches).
    See http://www.cms.hhs.gov/immigrants/

    Our parents who become LPRs (sponsored by their citizen children) come under "unqualified" LPRs and so are not eligible for medicaid for at least 5 years and even after 5 years , it depends on the individual state. So do not bank on it.
    See the hyperlinks in the above link.

    The situation was much different till a few years ago when the benefits were liberal and everyone qualified for these benefits.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 14, 2004
  8. JENNIEY

    JENNIEY New Member

    A benefit is a health care service or supply that is paid for in part or in full by Medicare.
     

Share This Page