Below you will find detailed information about health insurance for a golden visa in Spain. If you are just looking for a summary then visit the page health insurance for Spanish golden visa.
Table of contents
Why you need private health insurance in Spain for a golden visa
As part of the golden visa application there is a requirement to have a suitable health insurance policy in place to cover everyone applying, including children. The requirement for private health insurance comes from the fact that you are not contributing to the state health system and therefore have no right to of free access to it. For that reason, the Spanish authorities want to make sure that you have appropriate health cover to protect you and your family whilst you are living in Spain.
The criteria the private health insurance policy must meet to be accepted
1. The can be no co-payments with the health insurance policy for a golden visa in Spain. It must be, what is known as “sin copago”. That means after having paid the agreed premium there is no additional fees to use the services covered by the policy. If a policy does have even a small co-payment your application for s golden visa will be declined.
2. There should be no grace priod / moratorium. Access to the full cover of the policy should be available from the day the policy starts.*
3. The policy must be an annual policy. Health policies in Spain run for 12 months when they are then automatcially renewed unless either party gives the appropriate notification. Some companies run all their customers policies from 1st January to 31 December. With those companies you only pay a pro-rata amount in year one.*
4. The policy must provide a comprehensive coverage of your health. It should put you in a similar position to someone who is entitled to use the state system. Witha wealth of products on the market you need to make sure you buy an appropriate level of cover.
5. The policy should include repatriation cover. Some health companies do not have this option available so you if you go with one of those health insurance companies in Spain you will need to contract a separate repatriation policy. Repatriation cover is provided as a feature of the health policy or in a separate policy and means all the costs, legal aspects and paperwork of transporting a deceased person back to their home country are covered.*
*The criteria is for a full 12-month policy and not a company that renews all its policies on 31 December. This is because in the first year you may only pay a few months of health cover on pro-rata basis. However, for golden visas, many applications are currently accepted with a health insurance company that runs all its clients' policies from 1st January to 31 December and sometimes these companies are more competitive. Additionally, the repatriation cover is also often overlooked as is whether the policy has a grace period or not. If any of these elements are missing from your policy it does not strictly meet the criteria. If you apply with a Spanish health policy that does not meet the normal criteria then you are taking the risk and your Spanish golden visa application may be refused.
What information do I need to give to get a quote?
The basic information required to get a quotation is:
1. The dates of birth of all the parties to the health insurance policy
2. The gender of each of those applicants
3. In many cases, the town and province (and post code if you know it) are required as some companies have different premiums for different locations
4. A contact phone number and email so that we can explain how health insurance for a golden visa works, the timescale for applying. Depending on individual medical history the application process may take longer or an applciation may have to be submitted to more than one company.
Can I spread the premium by paying in instalments?
No. The Spanish authorities want you to show them that a full annual premium is paid and the cover runs for a full 12-months. You cannot pay by instalments.
Can I cancel the policy once I have my visa?
No. You should maintain the health insurance for the full time of your Spanish golden visa. You may be asked to prove you have maintained the appropriate health cover throughout the period if and when you need to renew your visa.
Do I need to take a medical examination?
No. There is no requirement for any of the applicants for the health insurance policy in Spain to take a medical examination.
You will need to complete and application form and complete and sign a health declaration. The health declaration varies from company to company. Common questions that are included in these questionnaires are:
• Height and weight.
• Whether you have undergone an operation or been hospitalised. The reason, what the treatment was and what is the current situation.
• Are you currently on any medication? You should give the name and dosage of the medication and the reason for taking the medication.
• Are you currently suffering from any illness, what it is, any ongoing treatment or medication etcetera?
I have some pre-existing conditions
All private health insurance companies will exclude pre-existing conditions. That means that should you have a medical issue that relates to a conditions you had at the time of applying for the policy then it will not be covered by the policy. The cost of any treatment for the pre-existing condition would have to be met by the individual and is not covered or paid for by the insurance company.
When you complete your medical questionnaire (see the section “Do I need to take a medical examination?”) the insurance company may want to contact you either by email or phone to clarify your answers, request a more detailed questionnaire or ask for a medical report from your doctor about something you have entered on the questionnaire. They will use this information to decide if they are willing to issue the health insurance policy.
The completion of the medical questionnaire and your pre-existing conditions will influence whether the insurance company will provide a health insurance policy or not. There are three possible outcomes. 1) you are accepted without any exclusions included in the policy, 2) The company agrees to provide you with a health insurance in Spain but with exclusions. You will be asked whether you accept them or not, 3) Your application is declined. Something in your medical history is outside what the insurance company feels is a comfortable risk to accept. In this scenario, the insurance company decides not to offer any type of health insurance at all.
Please remember that the health insurance companies in Spain are profit making businesses and are answerable to their shareholders or stakeholders. They are not obliged to give anyone health insurance cover and in some circumstances will feel that a person’s current or previous health issues mean that they do not think it makes commercial sense to issue the policy.
How do I use my health policy in Spain?
Most of the Spanish health insurance companies have mobile phone applications and web access for their clients. Once you are registered you will be able to access a client area. Depending on the company you will be able to:
1. See you policy details
2. Request authorisations for treatment
3. See requests for treatment that have been authorised
4. See the emergency contact numbers
5. Search the directory for affiliated doctors, clinics, hospitals and specialists
Not all treatments need authorisation and if they do most companies make a commitment to respond within 48 hours.
You do not have to go through an ordinary doctor first to get a referral to a specialist. If you know you have a skin problem, then you can search the health insurance companies list of dermatology specialists and make an appointment with them directly.
You do not have to wait for an emergency to use the policy. You use your health insurance policy in Spain for general check-ups too. For example, men over fifty can ask to have their prostate gland checked. You could ask for an annual well-being revision including a blood test, for example. Women are entitled to have regular smear tests and breast screening.
If you have difficulties, you can contact the company or your broker for assistance.
What happens if my health application is declined?
Private health insurance companies in Spain will have developed their own underwriting criteria. It is inevitable that some people will be declined due to their medical history. This is clearly disappointing but the final decision is with the insurance company.
These companies are profit making business and are not obliged to issue a policy. They are not funded by the government.
If your application is declined then this may be because of a serious pre-existing condition, or a number of smaller conditions that combined make the insurance company feel unable to grant you a private health insurance policy.
There is nothing stopping you applying to another provider of private health insurance in Spain. We work with a number of companies so can try and help find an alternative. Some medical conditions will mean that it is not possible to obtain cover from any of the insurers we work with.
Our service to you includes researching the companies and products available on an ongoing basis and looking for the most appropriate product for your circumstances. In addition, we will:
• guide you through the application process,
• collect your paperwork that you need to submit your application for the health insurance
• Liaise with the insurer on your behalf
• Explain to you how the product works
• Make sure the insurance company sends you the paperwork you need to submit as part of your golden visa application.
• Re-submit your documents to an alternative provider if the first application is declined.
Our fee for this service is a one-off 25.00 euro service fee at the point of making the first application. The fee is non-refundable. If we are successful in placing your insurance business and you accept the terms offered by the insurer then the insurance company will pay us a commission. Even with over 30 years experience we cannot influence the insurance underwriters medical evaluation criteria, which is adjusted from time to time. Some medical history will mean we are unable to obtain a policy for you, despite our best efforts. In these cases the cost to you is only the 25.00 euro service fee.
If you take an insurer product through us then that does not have to be the end of our relationship. We can show you how to obtain authorisations for treatment and liaise between you and the health insurance company if you are having difficulties.