Who can get the EHIC? What are the eligibility criteria to get your EHIC? Is it available to you if you live in another European country? The European Health Insurance Card allows you to receive state-funded medical abroad. It is valid while you are travelling in another country of the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland. The EHIC offers you the same cover as a resident of the country. In most cases, the treatments will be free.
Who can get a European Health Insurance Card?
- You live in the United Kingdom
The EHIC is available to residents of the United Kingdom. The insurability determines the eligibility, under the law of the European Union. It means that the person’s nationality generally does not determinate the eligibility. Therefore residency will determine the insurability. If you live in the United Kingdom and no other country of the EEA covers you, then you qualify to receive a UK-issued EHIC.
In some cases, you can receive a UK-issued EHIC even if you live in another country of the EEA or Switzerland. You can find more details below.
- You live in the United Kingdom but another EEA country covers you
In that case, you will not be able to receive a UK-issued EHIC. However, you can apply to receive a card issued by the country you insured by. For example, if you are a British citizen living in France, you will have to contact the French authorities to issue a new card as you will not be covered by your UK EHIC.
Can you lose your eligibility?
It is important to always get in touch with the relevant authority to inform them of any change. Moving abroad for retirement or for a new job means you are no longer covered by the UK. You will need to receive a new card issued by the country you are insured by to benefit from your EHIC cover.
If you live in the UK and are still insured by another country of the EEA or Switzerland, you will not receive a UK-issued EHIC. Only one country can offer you its state-funded healthcare system. If you continue to use your UK-issued European Health card, you may be liable for the cost of medical treatments you receive and face large bills.
If you need more information about your eligibility, please get in touch with our team.