Health Insurance for New Immigrants

#1
Hey everyone,

I am doing research about health insurance for new immigrants travelling to the US.
My travel plans changed and I want to get some insurance before travelling, but it's very hard to find a decent plan.

I read the healthcare articles on BritSimonSays.com and reviewed visitorscoverage.com. There are a lot of plans there, but after reading so many reviews it doesn't look good. Some of them are not suitable for US residents (green card holders) and some of them have really bad reputation of rejecting every claim with an excuse of "pre-existing condition", specifically Atlas America and Patriot America which is administered by International Medical Group (IMG).
They are pretty affordable, but might end up useless if I need to use them for something.

I read somewhere that new immigrants should be able to enrol to HealthCare.gov, but the enrolments are closed now.

Can anyone recommend a health insurance plan that they have used, something temporary until I get a job and get insured?

Any help appreciated!
 

Britsimon

Super Moderator
#3
Hey everyone,

I am doing research about health insurance for new immigrants travelling to the US.
My travel plans changed and I want to get some insurance before travelling, but it's very hard to find a decent plan.

I read the healthcare articles on BritSimonSays.com and reviewed visitorscoverage.com. There are a lot of plans there, but after reading so many reviews it doesn't look good. Some of them are not suitable for US residents (green card holders) and some of them have really bad reputation of rejecting every claim with an excuse of "pre-existing condition", specifically Atlas America and Patriot America which is administered by International Medical Group (IMG).
They are pretty affordable, but might end up useless if I need to use them for something.

I read somewhere that new immigrants should be able to enrol to HealthCare.gov, but the enrolments are closed now.

Can anyone recommend a health insurance plan that they have used, something temporary until I get a job and get insured?

Any help appreciated!
My articles about health coverage point out that you need to choose a plan that is a) suitable for a GC holder, and b) covers pre-existing conditions. The Visitorscoverage site makes both those things clear on every plan.

I also make clear that these plans should only be seen as a temporary solution, not a long term plan, and that ACA plans (such as offered on healthcare.gov) are the best option if you are not just on an extended activation trip.

And finally, as Xarthisius points out, a new immigrant can start a healthcare.gov plan outside of the open enrollment period.
 
#4
Thanks for your answers, guys.

@Britsimon, You are right, the Visitorscoverage site shows details about every plan, that was not my complain.
What I wanted to point out is that there are tons of bad reviews of the plans on Visitorscoverage (specifically Atlas America and Patriot America) which say that they cover pre-existing conditions, but later they actually rejected claims that people opened with that excuse.
The point was, the more I search for reviews, the worse the plans look.

I understand that they should be used only temporary. I am doing an activation trip as well as moving, so maybe a better option is to move there without health insurance and then get one from the ACA plans offered on healthcare.gov.
I tried registering on healthcare.gov but it requires SSN and US phone number, and since I am still overseas, I can't complete the application.
 

Britsimon

Super Moderator
#5
Thanks for your answers, guys.

@Britsimon, You are right, the Visitorscoverage site shows details about every plan, that was not my complain.
What I wanted to point out is that there are tons of bad reviews of the plans on Visitorscoverage (specifically Atlas America and Patriot America) which say that they cover pre-existing conditions, but later they actually rejected claims that people opened with that excuse.
The point was, the more I search for reviews, the worse the plans look.

I understand that they should be used only temporary. I am doing an activation trip as well as moving, so maybe a better option is to move there without health insurance and then get one from the ACA plans offered on healthcare.gov.
I tried registering on healthcare.gov but it requires SSN and US phone number, and since I am still overseas, I can't complete the application.
An ACA plan is ideal, but a cheap plan that "should" cover some costs, is way better than no insurance at all. Medical emergencies here come with eye watering bills. Like - my wife's simple vertigo (acute dizziness) episode with a four hour visit to the ER. The bill? $25,000. 6 figure bills are not that unusual here. It will take a few weeks to get covered under ACA - so that is why there are the cheap plans.
 
#7
Hi, i have a similar question to the OP. I'm looking for a temporary health insurance plan to cover me from when i land until i can apply for the marketplace plans (can't enrol from overseas). I've visited Britsimon's page on Visitors insurance but all the plans (e.g. Seven Corners, Patriot America) either say 1) they're only available to non-US residents or 2) it's not available if you have a New York address. I have a green card and will be moving to New York.

Can anyone recommend any insurance companies they've used if they've been in the same circumstances?

@webster - was wondering which plan you went with?

Thanks!
 

Britsimon

Super Moderator
#8
Hi, i have a similar question to the OP. I'm looking for a temporary health insurance plan to cover me from when i land until i can apply for the marketplace plans (can't enrol from overseas). I've visited Britsimon's page on Visitors insurance but all the plans (e.g. Seven Corners, Patriot America) either say 1) they're only available to non-US residents or 2) it's not available if you have a New York address. I have a green card and will be moving to New York.

Can anyone recommend any insurance companies they've used if they've been in the same circumstances?

@webster - was wondering which plan you went with?

Thanks!
On the Visitors Coverage site, you need to click the link for "Inbound Immigrants" and when you see the choice of plans would with find several that are not restrictive about the state of residence. Patriot America Plus is one such plan. You can also use insurance from your home country BUT be careful if your actual intention is to settle on this trip.
 
#9
On the Visitors Coverage site, you need to click the link for "Inbound Immigrants" and when you see the choice of plans would with find several that are not restrictive about the state of residence. Patriot America Plus is one such plan. You can also use insurance from your home country BUT be careful if your actual intention is to settle on this trip.
Thanks @Britsimon ! For the ACA plans, do you know if it will be an issue (e.g. using government subsidies, public charge etc) if i select $0 income (as i won't have a job when i get there)?
 

newacct

Well-Known Member
#11
Thanks @Britsimon ! For the ACA plans, do you know if it will be an issue (e.g. using government subsidies, public charge etc) if i select $0 income (as i won't have a job when i get there)?
ACA plans and subsidies are not considered for public charge purposes under either the current rules or the proposed new public charge rules (which have not yet come into effect). I see that you mentioned New York; if the new immigrant lives in New York, they can get Medicaid without waiting 5 years if their income is low enough, paid for entirely by state funds within the first 5 years; Medicaid paid for entirely by state funds is also not considered under either the current rules or the proposed new public charge rules.

If you select $0 income, you will not get the ACA subsidy because you can only get the subsidy if the income is between 100% and 400% of the poverty level.
 
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