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Am I required to have an MEC insurance plan?

The Affordable Care Act has made healthcare coverage mandatory for many US taxpayers. Here’s how to find out if you need an MEC compliant insurance plan.

Before you choose an insurance plan, you should know whether or not ACA requirements apply to you. The Individual Mandate to obtain health care that meets Minimum Essential Cover (MEC) standards applies to:

  • US citizens

  • Legal US residents

  • Resident aliens

  • Non-resident aliens required to file a US tax return

Unless they meet an existing exemption:

  • They are a bona fide foreign resident*

  • They are out of the US for 330 days in a tax year

  • They hold a certain diplomatic visa (A & G)

  • They hold certain student visas

  • They meet hardship exemptions

How these categories apply to you can determine whether or not you must consider obtaining an MEC compliant insurance plan.

* For a determination of a bona fide resident, please see the Bona Fide Residence Test on the IRS website.

 

Who will need to secure MEC?

This table outlines who is eligible for our MEC plans and who is not:

  

Eligible Customers

Inbound Expats

Outbound US Nationals residing outside of the US

Outbound Expats

Inbound Non-US Nationals residing in the US under an eligible visa or green card. Note: See our non-US national requirements section below for more information.) 

Ineligible Customers

US Nationals residing in the US (including the following US territories: Guam, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands, and the US Virgin Islands)

Non-US Nationals not residing in the US.

 

There may be further conditions that apply to specific plans, so please visit our Insurance Solutions page, or fill out the form at the bottom of the page to find out more.

 

Non US-national requirements

If you are an inbound non-US national, then the following important points may apply:

 

Eligible green card or visa requirements

The policyholder and each beneficiary must have an eligible green card or visa from the following lists:

The green card or visa must also be valid throughout the period of cover.

 

Eligible Green Card Category List

If your Green Card is on the list below, you are required to secure MEC.

Category code Description Eligibility
E10 Child of a priority worker classified as E11, E16, E12, E17, E13, or E18. 10 years
E11 Priority worker -alien with extraordinary ability. 10 years
E12 Priority worker -outstanding professor or researcher. 10 years
E13 Priority worker -certain multinational executive or manager. 10 years
E14 Spouse of a priority worker 10 years
E15 Child of a priority worker classified as E11, E16, E12, E17, E13, or E18. 10 years
E16 Priority worker -alien with extraordinary ability. 10 years
E17 Priority worker -outstanding professor or researcher. 10 years
E18 Priority worker -certain multinational executive or manager. 10 years
E19 Spouse of a priority worker 10 years
E21 Professional holding an advanced degree or of exceptional ability. 10 years
E22 Spouse of an alien classified as E21 or E26. 10 years
E23 E28 Child of an alien classified as E21 or E26. 10 years
E26 Professional holding an advanced degree or of exceptional ability. 10 years
E27 Spouse of an alien classified as E21 or E26. 10 years
E30 Child of a skilled worker or professional classified as E31, E36, E32, or E37. 10 years
E31 Alien who is a skilled worker. 10 years
E32 Professional who holds a baccalaureate degree or who is a member of a profession. 10 years
E34 Spouse of a skilled worker or professional classified as E31, E36, E32, or E37. 10 years
E35 Child of a skilled worker or professional classified as E31, E36, E32, or E37. 10 years
E36 Alien who is a skilled worker. 10 years
E37 Professional who holds a baccalaureate degree or who is a member of a profession. 10 years
E39 Spouse of a skilled worker or professional classified as E31, E36, E32, or E37. 10 years
ES1 Soviet scientist, principal. 10 years
ES6 Soviet scientist, principal. 10 years
EW3 Other worker performing unskilled labor, not of a temporary or seasonal nature, for which qualified workers are not available in the country-region place (United States.) 10 years
EW8 Other worker performing unskilled labor, not of a temporary or seasonal nature, for which qualified workers are not available in the country-region place (United States.) 10 years
HK1 Employees of certain U.S. businesses operating in place - Hong Kong. 10 years
HK2 Spouse of an alien classified as HK1 or HK6. 10 years
HK3 HK8 Child of an alien classified as HK1 or HK6. 10 years
HK6 Employees of certain U.S. businesses operating in place - HongKong. 10 years
HK7 Spouse of an alien classified as HK1 or HK6. 10 years
RN6 Certain former H1 nonimmigrant registered nurses. 10 years
RN7 Accompanying spouse or child of an alien classified as RN6. 10 years
SD1 SD6 Minister of religion. 10 years
SD2 SD7 Spouse of an alien classified as SD1 or SD6. 10 years
SD3 SD8 Child of an alien classified as SD1 or SD6. 10 years
SE1 SE6 Certain employees or former employees of the country-regionplaceU.S. government abroad. 10 years
SE2 SE7 Accompanying spouse of an alien classified as SE1 or SE6. 10 years
SE3 SE8 Accompanying child of an alien classified as SE1 or SE6. 10 years
SEH SEK Employee of U.S. Mission in place - HongKong (limit of 500 and these persons are admitted exempt from the country limitation) 10 years
SF1 SF6 Certain former employees of the Panama Canal Company or Canal Zone Government. (See SF1 in section X-IMM.) 10 years
SF2 SF7 Accompanying spouse or child of an alien classified as SF1 or SF6. 10 years
SG1 SG6 Certain former employees of the U.S. Government in the place - Panama Canal Zone. 10 years
SG2 SG7 Accompanying spouse or child of an alien classified as SG1 or SG6. 10 years
SH1 SH6 Certain former employees of the Panama Canal Company or Canal Zone Government employed on Apr. 1, 1979. 10 years
SH2 SH7 Accompanying spouse or child of an alien classified as SH1 or SH6. 10 years
SJ2 Spouse or child of an alien classified as SJ6.on Jan. 9, 1978. 10 years
SJ6 Foreign medical school graduate who was licensed to practice in the country-region, or place in the UnitedStates 10 years
SJ7 Spouse or child of an alien classified as SJ6.on Jan. 9, 1978. 10 years
SR1 SR6 Religious worker.  
SR2 SR7 Spouse of an alien classified as SR1 or SR6 10 years
SR3 SR8 Child of an alien classified as SR1 or SR6. 10 years
XE3 Child born subsequent to the issuance of a visa. Parent is employment-based preference immigrant. 10 years
W16 Alien previously granted temporary resident status (legalization) who illegally entered the country-region-place of the United States without inspection prior to Jan.1, 1982. 10 years
W26 Alien previously granted temporary resident status (legalization) who entered the country-region-place of the UnitedStates as a non-immigrant and overstayed visa prior to Jan. 1, 1982. 10 years
W36 Alien previously granted temporary resident status (legalization) from a country granted blanket extended 10 years
XB3 Alien who is presumed to have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence. 10 years
E51 Employment creation immigrant. 10 years
E52 Spouse of an alien classified as E51 or E56. 10 years
E53 Child of an alien classified as E51 or E56. 10 years
E56 Employment creation immigrant. 10 years
E57 Spouse of an alien classified as E51 or E56. 10 years
E58 Child of an alien classified as E51 or E56. 10 years
I51 Investor pilot program targeted, principal -conditional 10 years
I52 Investor pilot program targeted, spouse -conditional 10 years
I53 Investor pilot program targeted, child -conditional 10 years
I56 Investor Pilot program targeted, principal -conditional. 10 years
I57 Investor Pilot program targeted, spouse -conditional. 10 years
I58 Investor Pilot program targeted, child -conditional. 10 years
NP8 Alien who filed and was qualified with investor status prior to June 1, 1978. 10 years
NP9 Spouse or child of an alien classified as NP8. 10 years
R51 Investor Pilot Program not targeted, principal -conditional 10 years
R52 Investor Pilot Program not targeted, spouse -conditional 10 years
R53 Investor Pilot Program not targeted, child -conditional 10 years
R56 Investor Pilot Program not targeted, principal -conditional. 10 years
R57 Investor Pilot Program not targeted, spouse –conditional 10 years
R58 Investor Pilot Program not targeted, child –conditional 10 years
T51 T56 Employment creation immigrant (targeted area) -conditional. 10 years
T52 T57 Spouse of an alien classified as T51 or T56 (targeted area) -conditional. 10 years
T53 T58 Child of an alien classified as T51 or T56 (targeted area) -conditional. 10 years
DV1 Diversity immigrant. 10 years
DV2 Spouse of an alien classified as DV1 or DV6. 10 years
DV3 Child of an alien classified as DV1 or DV6. 10 years
DV6 Diversity immigrant. 10 years
DV7 Spouse of an alien classified as DV1 or DV6. 10 years
DV8 Child of an alien classified as DV1 or DV6. 10 years
SC1 SC6 Person who lost country-region-place of the U.S. citizenship through marriage. 10 years
SC2 SC7 Person who lost country-region-place of the U.S. citizenship by serving in foreign armed forces. 10 years
F21 Spouse of US permanent resident 10 years
F22 Child (unmarried and under 21) of US permanent resident 10 years
F23 Child of F21 or F22 (accompanying parent) 10 years
F24 Unmarried son/daughter (21 and over) of permanent resident 10 years
F26 Spouse of permanent resident (obtained permanent residence in the US and not through the consulate) 10 years
F27 Unmarried son/daughter (21 and over) of permanent resident (obtained permanent residence in the US and not through the consulate) 10 years
F28 Child of an alien classified as F21 or F26 (subject to country limitations). 10 years
F29 Unmarried son or daughter (21 years of age or older) of a lawful permanent resident alien (subject to country limitations). 10 years
FX1 Spouse of a lawful permanent resident alien (exempt from country limitations). 10 years
FX6 Spouse of a lawful permanent resident alien (exempt from country limitations). 10 years
FX2 Child (under 21 years of age) of a lawful permanent resident alien (exempt from country limitations). 10 years
FX7 Child (under 21 years of age) of a lawful permanent resident alien (exempt from country limitations). 10 years
FX3 Child of an alien classified as FX1, FX2, FX7, or FX8 (exempt from country limitations) 10 years
FX8 Child of an alien classified as FX1, FX2, FX7, or FX8 (exempt from country limitations) 10 years

 

Eligible Visa Category List

Below is the main list of visas that are required to have valid ACA insurance in place.  

Visa Type Description Eligibility
E1 Treaty trader, spouse, and children 2 years
E2 Treaty investor, spouse, and children 3 years
E3 Australian specialty occupation professional 2 years
E3D Spouse or child of Australian specialty occupation 2 years
E3R Returning Australian specialty occupation professional 2 years
H1B Professional Work Visa (specialty occupation) 3 years
H1B1 H1B for Chile and Singapore 3 years
H4 Spouse or child of H1/B/B1 3 years
L1 Intercompany transferee (executive, managerial, and specialized personnel continuing employment with international firm or corporation) 3 years
L2 Spouse or child of intercompany transferee 3 years
O1 Person with extraordinary ability in the sciences, art, education, business, or athletics 3 years
O2 Person accompanying and assisting in the O1 3 years
O3 Spouse or child of O1 or O2 3 years
R1 Person in a religious occupation 30 months
R2 Spouse or child of R1 30 months
TD Spouse or child of TN 3 years
TN NAFTA professional 3 years

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