Consular Health Insurance Requirements for Exchange Scholar Visa (J1 visa)
- According to the US Department of State guidelines established for the J Visa program the following insurance requirements to maintain J1 / J2 status are:
- The J1 exchange visitor visa health insurance policy must provide medical benefits of at least $50,000 for each accident or illness. " However, starting May 15, 2015 this maximum will be increased to $100,000. Students with existing policies should be able to "upgrade" their policies this one time by paying the increased rate.
- If due to serious medical illness or accidental injury, the insured must be sent home on the advice of a doctor, the policy must cover upto $10,000 for the travel expenses due to the medical condition.
- If a J visa holder dies in the United States, then the policy must provide repatriation benefits of at least $7,500 to send the mortal remains to the home country of insured for cremation / burial.
- Exchange visitor medical insurance policy usually have a waiting period before it covers pre-existing conditions (ie health problems you had before you bought the insurance), as long as the waiting period which is reasonable by current standards in the insurance field.
If the insured elect to satisfy the insurance requirement through a policy issued in the insureds home country, the policy must be backed by the full faith and credit of the home country government. Otherwise, the company providing the insurance must meet minimum rating requirements established by Department of State (an A.M. Best rating of "A-" or better, an Insurance Solvency International, Ltd. (ISI) rating of "A-1" or better, a Standard & Poor's Claims-Paying Ability rating of "A-" or better, or a Weiss Research, Inc. rating of "B+" or better).