No Expat Health insurance for British Retirees
According to a recent report, UK expats planning to take early retirement and relocate to Europe will no longer be entitled to subsidised expat travel insurance.
Under the current scheme, those UK citizens retiring to Europe at any age have to fill out an S1 form.
With this form they and their partner/children are entitled to 2 ½ years of free international health insurance.
However, at the beginning of April 2014 this is set to change and any British expats retiring below the state requirement age of 65 for men and 60 for woman will no longer be able to submit the S1 form.
Therefore, if you were planning on making the move to one of Europe’s popular expat retirement locations (like France, Spain or Italy) and you haven’t quite reached your twilight years, you’ll need to take out private medical cover to protect yourself against accident or injury.
The move is part of an extensive NHS cost-cutting programme, and it has been argued that the change will make the situation fairer for British taxpayers still living in the UK.
Earlier this year Health Minister Lord Howe said of the decision; ‘Having a universal health service free at the point of use rightly makes us the envy of the world, but we must make sure the system is fair to the hard-working British taxpayers who fund it.’
Those British expats of retirement age or over will still be able to receive the free health cover, and those who filled out an S1 form before April 1st won’t be affected.
According to Expatriate Healthcare, who produced a news article concerning this development, ‘International health insurance is to be expected for most people travelling to a foreign country for residence and pleasure, other than for work or studying in accordance to each countries health insurance laws. However, the foundation and history of the NHS is arguably one of British pride and looking after their elderly after years of hard labour aiding the evolution and strength of the British economy is thrown into question by ending travel insurance for the UK’s retired expats.’
What do you think?
Is this move fair?
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