There are lots of reasons why an expat employers should put their expatriates on an international benefit plan versus the local benefit plan. Here are just a few:
A local plan only covers the expat locally and coverage is not portable. Since expats are mobile, they need coverage that will move with them. Each time an expat employee is moved from one country to another, he or she will have to apply for a new level of coverage that may or may not cover a new pre-existing medical illness or injury.
By placing numerous expats under one plan, you can get better economies of scale under a larger group plan. Global benefit plans can actually deliver excellent savings versus placing expats on various local policies.
Expat benefit plans can be administered from the HQ both online and offline. You will have all your expats under one benefit plan that can allow you to easily administer the benefits versus having several different benefit providers, policies and brokers to deal with. Most expat plans we can source will allow for online administration and comprehensive support from a large global insurance company.
Instead of having all your expats under several different local benefit plans in each country they are residing in, you can have a global benefit plan that provides the same level of benefits and costs for your entire expatriate population. This is a significant advantage over having an expat population covered by several different insurers with varying degrees of insurance coverage.
A local plan can only cover an expatriate and their dependents locally. However, expatriates not only require local coverage, but want to be able to be insured for claims internationally, especially back in their home country. Many expats will have trailing dependents who also require coverage back home and a local benefit plan can’t provide this critical insurance. Also, expatriate coverage is almost always vastly superior to what is provided to the local population.
In many developed countries, local benefit plans are designed to meet the requirements of the local nationals, but not expatriates. Local medical care and insurance plans in most developing or third world countries are generally not up the standards that are expected by most expatriate employees. Also, the local insurance plans are not set up to cover expatriates, who are often compensated US dollars whereas local plans will be in the local currency, which can be a big problem at claim time. This can be a huge issue for any life or disability coverage which will only cover the expat as long as they remain in the local country.
When HR managers are trying to attract and retain expatriate employees, an international benefit plan provided by a large and well known global insurance provider will provide the peace of mind that will both attract and retain your expatriate employees. Providing a local benefit plan will often not meet the needs of a valuable expatriate employee. An unsuccessful expat assignment can cost the employer many hundreds of thousands, so it makes sense to invest in a group benefit plan designed for expat employees.
There are many more reasons why global mobility managers should place their expatriates on a global benefit platform. To find out more, contact Expat Financial to discuss your organization’s requirements and obtain quotes from the market. Read more about our group expat insurance plans on our corporate page.