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Apologies if this has already been covered, but as a newbie to this site I have a question about the French healthcare system.

My question is whether as an Englishman with a French wife I will be able to access the French healthcare system when we make our move to live (but not work) in France sometime next year?

I understand that normally someone my age (not married to a French national) would need to buy private insurance until we qualify for the 5 year residency.

Im assuming that my wife as a French national will be covered by the system in some capacity.

Im 55 (my wife is 48). We will live on saving and possibly a small income renting out a gite.

Any guidance or comments would be very much appreciated.

Piers
 

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The French system works a bit differently from the British system. If you are eligible for health care benefits in the UK at the time of your move, be sure to get a form from the government that attests to this. This is now being referred to as the European Health Insurance Card, but someone here will have the exact form number.

If you are recognized as being "retired" in the UK system, it may be possible to transfer into the French system. If not, you'll have at least a year or so of coverage while you decide what to do.

Your wife won't be covered by the French system at all, as it's a matter of paying cotisations - usually through your work - and if she has been outside of France for some time, she won't have any coverage.

If you are renting out a gite, you may want to set up your "business" in some manner so that you would be making cotisations to the French system. (One possibility is to set up an auto-entrepreneur business, though I'm not sure if property rentals qualify for this statut.) If either of you is paying cotisations, you can then include your spouse on your coverage.

But the French health system is a reimbursement system and only makes partial reimbursement. You'll want to look into a "mutuelle" to top up the reimbursements.
Cheers,
Bev
 
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Bev, I've a feeling property rentals don't qualify for the micro-entreprise set-up, or at least if they do I'll be annoyed with my accountant as I have to make two declarations as it is, one as a 'loueur de meublés' for tax purposes (no sécu), the other as a micro-entrepreneur.

A question - wouldn't a spouse, whether French or English, be covered at least for the initial period through the reciprocal arrangement you mentioned (EHIC)? Or if the French spouse had worked in the UK, I suppose the transfer of her UK rights would be possible...
 

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Bev, I've a feeling property rentals don't qualify for the micro-entreprise set-up, or at least if they do I'll be annoyed with my accountant as I have to make two declarations as it is, one as a 'loueur de meublés' for tax purposes (no sécu), the other as a micro-entrepreneur.

A question - wouldn't a spouse, whether French or English, be covered at least for the initial period through the reciprocal arrangement you mentioned (EHIC)? Or if the French spouse had worked in the UK, I suppose the transfer of her UK rights would be possible...
Ah, the problems with the English language. By "you" of course I meant either one of them - or should have done. If either of them has been working and thus can get the EHIC (one of those E forms we're always telling people to get before they leave the UK), the other should be covered by the French system, too.

You're probably right that "loueurs de meublés" are excluded from the auto-entrepreneur thing. From the business newsletters we receive, I only know that the statute for renting out property on anything other than a casual basis is very very complicated.
Cheers,
Bev
 
G

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Ah, the problems with the English language. By "you" of course I meant either one of them - or should have done. If either of them has been working and thus can get the EHIC (one of those E forms we're always telling people to get before they leave the UK), the other should be covered by the French system, too.
Gotcha. Obvious now I've reread it! Wonder if it's a full year, or more, the cover pending contributions in France.
 
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