Expat Healthcare in France and the ‘mutuelle’ system

Working in France yields many benefits when it comes to health insurance. The government-run healthcare program deducts contributions directly from salaries and reimburses patients usually 70 percent of their medical costs. Although this is great news for expats, many residents and expats alike tend to rely on an extended insurance policy known as a mutuelle.

Young doctor checking an MR exposure

A mutuelle’s intended purpose is to fill the 30 percent gap left behind from the government-funded health program, but depending on the mutuelle you choose, you may be entitled to additional coverage. There is also an additional program for people who are within
a certain income bracket called the CMU complémentaire. This program covers the remaining 30 percent that reimbursements do not.

Most residents in France who have employment will pay into the social security plan will get access to the medical system. Students in most Universities in France will also get coverage there. European nationals can also apply for state healthcare once they become residents.

Keep in mind that the state does not cover costs incurred by psychologists, psychoanalysts, osteopaths, or chiropractors, nor does it cover any additional surplus fees which private practitioners may charge on top of the state fee. If you require this or other chronic care, it is in your best interest to find a mutuelle that suits you. Expat Financial can also source private international health insurance plans for expatriates in France. An expatriate may want a medical plan that will cover him or her globally. This is especially important for American expatriates in European countries such as France.

Why do you need expat health insurance when living and working abroad?

Many expats may wonder why they need international health insurance when living abroad. In fact, as a foreign national, you and your family will most likely not be covered by free healthcare in the country where you are residing. Despite that the overall quality varies from country to country, you need to also consider hospital coverage, outpatient treatment, assistance and evacuation charge, as well as dental care, accidental death and invalidity or life coverage. After all, the peace of mind of knowing that you and your family have access to the best healthcare is very important. Therefore, you need to create tailored expatriate health insurance that meets your unique requirements.

Some expats will rely upon the local health schemes because of the low cost, but that plan may not allow you to obtain medical treatment at more satisfactory private clinics and hospitals. Local plans will also not provide medical coverage while you are travelling out of the country or when you go back home. Also, local plans in many developed countries may only provide fundamental medical coverage that may not be suitable for most expats.

Part of maintaining your health overseas means that you need to have medical coverage that will provide access to first world medical care that will help you address medical problems before they become serious medical issues. A global medical plan can include prescription drug coverage that will also help you or your loved ones maintain their health. Vaccination coverage is also important if you are residing in areas where diseases are more common and are especially critical if you have young children. This is why obtaining an out-patient medical option is a good idea if you and your family will be living overseas.

An expatriate health insurance plan can let you select the hospital, doctor or another medical service provider that best suits your needs. The policy is flexible and worldwide. Expat Financial and its insurance partners have an extensive network of medical service providers in almost every country in the world. With most of our insurers, you will enjoy direct payment, which means that you may not have to advance your medical expenses first. Choosing an expat medical provider with a large global medical network and the ability to provide a guarantee of payment is important.

While this article has mostly dealt with the critical nature of global medical coverage for individual expats, the same issues exist for expatriate employers who send employees overseas. An expat employer is legally responsible for their expat employees, and healthcare is a critical feature of any expat package. A plan that will provide excellent medical coverage for the expat employee and his or her family is vital, and an international group insurance plan can provide better coverage and premiums for the employer versus having the employee purchase his or her plan. A high-quality group plan will also help expat employers retain and attract employees.

The cost of international health insurance will vary by plan. Expat Financial offers several different international health insurance plans for expatriates of any nationality across the world. We also offer excellent service before and after you purchase your international health insurance plan. If you have questions about our international medical insurance plans or if you want to discuss your needs and produce a customized quote, please contact us or complete the quote form. As noted above, having excellent global medical coverage will not only give you peace of mind but will help you maintain your health!

Recent terrorist attacks reminds us of the importance of terrorism coverage for expats

Unfortunately, the world has been gripped by an increase in the number of high profile terrorist attacks, including Paris, Thailand, Indonesia and the recent terrorist attack by ISIS operative in Brussels, Belgium. The recent advances of the terrorist group ISIS in Iraq, Libya, Syria and other countries have unfortunately increased the level of terrorism and civil strife in the region. Unfortunately, the terrorist ideology is spreading from countries such as Syria and Iraq throughout many parts of the world. Europe is currently in the grip of a major terrorist threat.

Normally, expatriate employers and individual expats will want to obtain a policy which doesn’t exclude terrorism, war or civil strife. If they are residing or visiting high-risk countries where terrorism and other disturbances are a common place occurrence. However, the recent events in “safe countries” such as France and Belgium, may cause many expatriate HR managers and even individual expatriates to start thinking about obtaining a plan that will not exclude a claim that is the result of being caught up as an innocent bystander should terrorism strike. Most expat health, life, and disability plans will exclude passive war and terrorism. Passive war or terrorism means you were not being an active participant in the even and were simply caught up as an innocent bystander. However, TFG Global/Expat Financial is able to source global medical coverage, international life & disability and other coverage that will cover passive war and terrorism – usually on a group basis, but we can sometimes source individual plans as well for some travelers and expats.

importance of terrorism coverage

If your company is sending people abroad, today’s risk environment may necessitate obtaining a plan that will cover today’s terrorist environment where such events can strike almost anywhere. Luckily, our company is highly experienced in covering employees and travellers to very high-risk countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan, and Somalia. The international group insurance plans that we can source for multinational employers, governments and NGOs often include war risk at little or no extra charge. We are also a Lloyds of London appointed agent which has direct access via our underwriters in London and can source coverage for employees in the riskiest and challenging regions. These underwriters can source individual risk coverage that can meet almost any risk matrix.

It’s the world we live in, and terrorism will likely not reduce in the near or medium term. It makes sense for expat employers to obtain coverage that will protect their employees against terrorism risk in high and low-risk regions of the world. We can only hope for the best that terrorist events will become less frequent, but plan for the worst.

Missionary Insurance Solutions

You are about to start a mission trip, what kind of insurance coverage do you need? You might have a local healthcare plan in your home country. However, local medical plans do not travel with you when you are on the road or across the ocean. Therefore, most missionary organizations or groups provide or require Group International Missionary Health Insurance for their missionary staff. If you are travel alone on a short-term or long-term mission trip, then you are required to have Individual International Missionary Health Insurance.

Coverage for Dangerous Destinations 

Missionaries should not only be looking for overseas medical insurance, but also emergency evacuation, trip cancellation, political evacuation and other benefits. Depending on where you are going, you may also want to specifically look for war, terrorism, kidnap and ransom insurance coverage.

Get Insurance From Expat Financial 

As international insurance specialists, we can help you define your missionary group’s global risk requirements. TFG Global offers independent advice, solutions and ongoing service and support to clients around much of the world. We source plans from large and secure global insurance companies. Our firm can offer a wide array of insurance plans including International Life Insurance, Personal Accident Coverage, War and Terrorism CoverageExpat Disability Insurance, International Health Insurance, Kidnap & Ransom Insurance, Travel Medical Insurance, Evacuation Coverage. For more information, please view our Missionary Insurance Brochure.

Contact Expat Financial today if your mission group has gone global. Such plans have options for life, AD&D and dental insurance. We are a vital resource for international missionary insurance plansContact us today to discuss your mission group’s needs and obtain quotes from the market.

What to consider when moving abroad with children

Moving overseas can be very challenging. This is especially true when you are not living alone. With international health insurance at hand, adequately preparing your children of all ages before relocation is very important and it will assist your family with the best start to a new life abroad. The following tips provide information on how to deal with different age groups when moving overseas with children.

Kindergarten to Grade 6 

For most parents, if you are moving overseas with children under Grade 6 to a country where English is not the official language, don’t worry. Scientists have already proved that the age group between toddlers and Grade 6 can learn a new language fast with ease. Also, it is believed that this age group of children adopt new environment much more quickly. For children between age 9 and 12, however, make sure that you provide with them more details about the move overseas. They may already have many friends at school. Living abroad may seem taking away from everything they love in their home country. Spending more time with your children and encouraging them to keep in touch with their friends either through the social media sites and over the phone. Involving them when discussing life overseas, as well as enrolling them in some clubs with activities that they showed interest in.

Expat Teenagers 

Teenagers are likely to think of themselves as young adults. Moving overseas with teenagers can be more challenging if you didn’t have a good chat with them. Most expat families want teenagers to help with preparing and organizing when living abroad. At this age, although they are not sure about leaving, plus they already have a strong tie with friends and social networking, children in this age group will generally have the maturity to recognize that they will have many more opportunities abroad. However, relocating to a new country can be found more difficult for this age group due to the language barrier at the beginning, culture shock and extending social networking. As expat parents, you should continually focus on the positive aspect of the whole process and be patient about their doubts, questions and even give up. Talk to them about their expectations, try to work together to solve the challenges they are facing as a whole family, and consult educational opportunities available that they will be able to take part in. It is a great adventure for children of this age.

Schools for Expat Kids

One of the most daunting aspects of moving abroad with children is finding adequate schooling for your children young and old. Amongst all choices available, local schools and international schools are the two most popular options for many expat parents. The majority of local schools are teaching in their local language. For children coming from English language environment, this could be challenging at the very beginning. But if expat families are planning to stay permanently overseas, it is always better to encourage children to grasp the local language by attending local schools, especially of primary school age.  The international schools, however, usually teaching in English language or has English as their second language. It is more costly than local schools, but expats may find it easier for their children to settle in. Some international schools provide world-recognized education curricula, such as Montessori methodology, IB program(International Baccalaureate) and AP (Advanced Placement). It will help if expat children want to continue their home country education when living abroad.

Don’t forget Global Medical Cover for your Kids

International health insurance coverage is a necessity and should be your top considerations except for children. Expat Financial offers a wide range of expatriate health insurance plans designed specifically for any expatriates of any nationality around much of the world. Our expat health insurance plans can also cover local nationals where conditions permit. It is crucial for every expat family to take the necessary action to ensure that their spouse and children’s health and well-being are protected and provided for via an appropriate level of expat insurance.

If you have questions about our international medical insurance plans or if you want to discuss your needs and produce a customized evacuation quote, please contact us or complete the quote form.

 

Top Ten Questions and Tips For Expats Moving Abroad

Moving overseas is a major and exciting life change. If you are are thinking of becoming an expatriate, there are questions to  ask several things to look into before moving abroad:

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  1. Check to see how much support your expatriate employer will provide you in your move abroad
  2. Check with your spouse to make sure he or she is OK with this move abroad. Many expat assignments will fail because the spouse can’t stand living abroad.
  3. Talk to people and research the country and the position. There’s lots of information on expat websites.
  4. Travel to the country you will be moving to experience what life will be like there entirely. Don’t base it on a holiday experience.
  5. If you have children, what are the schools and childcare services in that country? Will your employer pay?
  6. Will your employer full pay for your travel expenses, including return trips to your home country during the year?
  7. Check on the tax implications of your move abroad. Talk to an expat tax adviser to see if you should become a non-resident for tax purposes.
  8. Will your spouse be able to work abroad? Can she seek employment in the new country?
  9. What housing will your employer provide? Is it in a good area and close to schools? If you are going on your own, will you sell your house and buy a property abroad or merely rent?
  10. Make sure your employer will provide adequate global medical insurance that will cover you abroad as most expats do not want to rely on local health plans. Also, think about expat life and disability insurance for you and your family. If you are not being put on a group expatriate insurance plan, then you will have to look into international insurance coverage. Expat Financial offers a variety of plans for both multinational employers and individual expatriates, including international health insurance.
Beach travel

Road accidents are a major cause of medical claims and evacuations for expatriates

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It has been recently noted by the World Health Organization (WHO) that there were approximately 1.24 million deaths on the world’s roads in 2013. Traveling on the roads of the country you are living in is a critical component of an expat assignment or business trip. It is a good idea to investigate and understand the risks factors and take steps if possible to protect your safety. The WHO report also noted that 28 countries have comprehensive road safety laws. It has been further reported that some of the most dangerous road safety stats are in Malaysia, Cambodia and Colombia. Countries such as Norway, the United Kingdom and Sweden have the best traffic safety records according to the OECD.

Many evacuations are caused by road incidents, especially in third and second world countries with very lax transportation rules and poor infrastructure. Such accidents are usually the result of poor driving by the local inhabitants or the expat’s unfamiliarity with the country. A nation’s cultures and laws can be radically different from the expat employee’s home country. It might be a good idea to source a professional driver and not drive at all. Public transit, if it exists, is another great option. Any driver should be properly vetted and references checked. Vehicle maintenance is also important and may be lacking in some third world countries.

It is a good idea to make sure that your international health insurance policy will adequately cover accidents that might occur on the road. A high level of service and support, especially in the event of a road incident, will be critical if medical evacuation is required. So, look both ways before you cross that street abroad and make sure you purchase adequate medical coverage that will cover you both locally and globally.

 

 

Are you ready for the Christmas Holidays? What about including expat health insurance?

Many expats are planning or have already booked a trip home in Christmas. When heading back from an expat assignment, we need to get a list of things such as plane tickets, gifts, hotels, etc. However, many may forget one less obvious thing: international health insurance. Be aware of your options for health care insurance coverage while you are celebrating Christmas with your family this winter.

To get the best protection, most expats will select the most common and relevant plans like travel insurance or annual international health insurance. Travel insurance is designed specifically to provide medical coverage while the policyholder is not at their country of citizenship. Annual international insurance is designed to provide ongoing
coverage for medical health care anywhere in the world. Expats may have coverage that only covers them in their expat assignment country, so they may want to get travel medical insurance for short trips abroad. If an expat is traveling home, he or she should make sure that the travel medical insurance plan will cover a trip to one’s country of citizenship. Some plans will include a trip home with a home return rider.

Despite the flexibility travel insurance holds, an annual international health insurance plan will be the better of the two regarding the actual level of coverage and service. This is because travel plans are designed to cover emergencies only incidents outside one’s country of citizenship. Many people may not realize that travel insurance plans will exclude any medical costs related to conditions such as pregnancy, pre-existing medical conditions, and accidents from sports, etc. In fact, travel insurance plans have more exclusions than an ordinary health insurance policy and many people are too late to know. International health insurance plans offer international direct
billing and can reimburse you for expenses much faster. You don’t need to pay for most medical expenses out of pocket. Furthermore, international insurance is a long-term medical plan focusing on recovery regardless of restrictive time limits and location. For example, if you applied for medical travel insurance and had an accident during your trip, you won’t be approved for coverage extension even though you need the treatment. When your travel insurance is coming to an end, you will be underwritten again, and the extended travel policy will not cover the treatment. However, international health insurance will still cover your expenses for the injury if you decided to extend your trip.

Finally, an international health plan will generally cover you globally excluding or including the USA. If you are an American expat, make sure that your expat health plan covers the USA if you plan to take a short visit home. Another option is to purchase short-term travel medical insurance for that trip to the USA, but make sure it covers you in your country of citizenship while living abroad.

Expat Financial offers a variety of international insurance plans on a group or individual basis. To maximize your expat experience and avoid unforeseen risks and costs, please contact us today to discuss your international insurance needs and requirements. Toll-free number: 1-800-232-9415 or email info@tfgglobal.com

Why expats should consider international health insurance over a local medical plan

When you are an expatriate living abroad, you are initially faced with the question of local versus international health plan? Which is better for my expatriate assignment, long-term travel or overseas retirement? Some countries can offer local health coverage to expatriates after an initial waiting period. However, the truth is, the local medical plans are not designed for expatriates. An international health insurance plan can provide superior coverage for you and your family that will cover you both locally and globally.

Local health plans are designed to cover a local national, not an expatriate who may want to seek medical treatment back in his or her home country or in another country. Almost all local health plans will not allow an expatriate to find medical care outside the state of domicile. If you are an expatriate living in a less developed country, it is even more important to obtain an international health plan that will allow for global medical treatment because the local medical facilities may not be up to western standards. You may also require a program that will provide medical evacuation coverage in case the local hospitals are not able to adequately treat your medical condition. Evacuation coverage is a crucial feature of any expatriate insurance plan.

Another problem with local health plans is that if an expatriate is posted to another country, the local coverage will not move with him or her. Expatriates are naturally mobile people who require portable coverage. This is especially important for expat employers who often move expat assignees from one country to another. If an expatriate has developed a pre-existing medical condition while being covered by a local health plan, they may find it challenging to become insured by a new medical insurer in the new country. The portability that a global health plan provides is a crucial feature of any group or individual health insurance plan.

Local plans are often not set up to allow for coverage when an expatriate returns home for a vacation or extended leave. Also, if an expatriate suffers a severe medical illness, he or she may want to seek medical treatment back in the home country. Again, only an international health plan will allow for medical treatment back in an expat’s county of citizenship.

Not only will international health insurance plans provide flexible worldwide coverage and freedom of comprehensive, world-class services, but they also come with the peace of mind that expats require. It is also important that you obtain an expat health plan that will allow for medical reimbursement from the local and global medical facilities. This will help you maintain a successful international experience for you and your family.

Expat Financial offers a variety of international insurance health insurance plans on a group or individual basis. To maximize your expat experience and avoid unforeseen risks and costs, please contact us today to discuss your international insurance needs and requirements. Toll-free number: 1-800-232-9415 or email info@tfgglobal.com