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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I'm Irish and my wife Kelly, is American. Kelly is 7 months pregnant.

We are moving to France next week for work for a couple of years. I am self employed and will be paying taxes in the US, therefore, not paying into the French tax/social system.

Our Health Insurance from the US just informed us following lengthy discussions that they will not cover the birth abroad! I'm disgusted to say the least with the cost of it!

So I called a few companies and no one will cover us as we are not with them for over a year.

Does anyone know how much it costs to have a baby in France without Insurance? How much do Doctor visits cost pre/post birth?

Is there any company that will cover us?

Rory
 

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Hi,

I'm Irish and my wife Kelly, is American. Kelly is 7 months pregnant.

We are moving to France next week for work for a couple of years. I am self employed and will be paying taxes in the US, therefore, not paying into the French tax/social system.

Our Health Insurance from the US just informed us following lengthy discussions that they will not cover the birth abroad! I'm disgusted to say the least with the cost of it!

So I called a few companies and no one will cover us as we are not with them for over a year.

Does anyone know how much it costs to have a baby in France without Insurance? How much do Doctor visits cost pre/post birth?

Is there any company that will cover us?

Rory
Don't know how you can be resident in France and self-employed paying taxes in the US. AFAIK that's not legal here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Don't know how you can be resident in France and self-employed paying taxes in the US. AFAIK that's not legal here.
That's not the question I wanted answered. I have fully investigated my legality in France with the US, Irish and French tax systems.
 

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That's not the question I wanted answered. I have fully investigated my legality in France with the US, Irish and French tax systems.
No, it's not the question you asked, however if you set up as a business here, that would give you health cover (though I suspect not soon enough for the birth).
 

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The cost of a straightforward birth can be high, but no-one can unfortunately say that things will be straightforward and in the unlikely but not impossible case of complications (baby, mother, mother and baby) they could be astronomical.

It's impossible to give an estimate as to the cost, as there are so many variables but in any case insurance cover is a must.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
No, it's not the question you asked, however if you set up as a business here, that would give you health cover (though I suspect not soon enough for the birth).
I appreciate your responses, however, I am not setting up a business in France. I am being contracted in to work for a company on a project there. Every EU citizen I know on the project is covered by the insurance from their own countries, not by the French system as they are exempt from paying into the French social system. That is not the case with my US insurance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The cost of a straightforward birth can be high, but no-one can unfortunately say that things will be straightforward and in the unlikely but not impossible case of complications (baby, mother, mother and baby) they could be astronomical.

It's impossible to give an estimate as to the cost, as there are so many variables but in any case insurance cover is a must.
Thanks...the candid response is appreciated. We'll keep searching for a solution. Worst case is that the US insurance will cover an emergency room birth. Not ideal but at least we're covered that way.
 

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Will you be living in Aix-en-Provence? Here's a link to a maternity clinic there with a very rough idea of costs. Also, a link to a guide that might be useful to you.

If you haven't already registered with a hospital, you should probably look into this straight away.

Bonne Chance !

Thanks Charlot! I'll have someone look at it as I don't speak French, nor does my wife! Oh lord what are we doing!??! Need classes asap! Luckily my work language is English!

Yes, we'll be arriving in Aix next Tuesday! Kelly is originally from Maryland but we live in Arizona...until next week that is!

Would you know of an English speaking Doctor?


Rory
 

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I appreciate your responses, however, I am not setting up a business in France. I am being contracted in to work for a company on a project there. Every EU citizen I know on the project is covered by the insurance from their own countries, not by the French system as they are exempt from paying into the French social system. That is not the case with my US insurance.
This won't directly answer the question you asked either, but it seems important to me.

As you say, EU citizens are covered by their own countries' social security. This is because of the EU cross border worker agreement. There are mutual agreements between France and other EU states to enable cross-border working. French legislation states clearly that everybody who works in France must affiliate to the French social security system, https://www.rsi.fr/a-propos-du-rsi/beneficiaires/affiliation/obligation-daffiliation.html
"Toute personne travaillant en France doit être rattachée à un régime de protection sociale obligatoire et cotiser proportionnellement à ses revenus, quel que soit son état de santé ou sa situation économique"

the only exception being, if they're an EU cross border worker covered by the social security system of another EU state and in possession of an S1 (or EHIC if on a short secondment) issued by that state.

Since there's no such agreement between France and the US, unfortunately under French law I can't see how you have any option other than to affiliate to the French social security system, either as an employee with your 'employer' paying the cotisations, or as a self-employed person paying your own cotisations.

The law is obviously designed to prevent exactly the kind of situation you're contemplating - it ensures that everybody who lives and works in France has social security and medical cover, funded either by France or by another EU state. As far as France is concerned, anybody who lives and works here, doesn't pay cotisations and doesn't have an S1, is living and working here illegally.

Quite honestly, what you're proposing to do scares me.
 

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Be very, very careful with this. Others have tried this before you and gotten into some real problems.

I am being contracted in to work for a company on a project there. Every EU citizen I know on the project is covered by the insurance from their own countries, not by the French system as they are exempt from paying into the French social system.
This is, indeed, the issue. The company that is contracting you - what country are they from? That may be the source of your problem. Many of these contracting deals are based on the assumption that contractors from the EU are covered by their home country social insurances, which isn't always the case. (Actually, these days, many EU countries don't carry over regular health care coverage from one EU country to the next - that only applies in general to "necessary care" available on an EHIC card.)

In France, you must have health care coverage. In order to get your wife a carte de séjour (residence permit) she will have to register at the prefecture as the spouse of an EU national and show what your "statut" is in France (i.e. to show that she is "joining" you here in France), as well as show that both you and she have health coverage. That may be where the stuff will hit the fan. Depends a bit on the local prefecture. Some are pickier than others about the rules.

The "good news" is that, although the French consider health care costs to be high if you have to pay it on your own, the charges are a bargain compared to what you'd be charged in the US as an uninsured patient - complications or no. OTOH, you will run into problems by trying to arrange for a birth here with no insurance coverage.

You may want to get back with the company you're contracting with. It appears they may have "misunderstood" the rules for working over here in France. Worst possible case might be to have your wife remain in the US until after the birth, at which time she can join you with the baby in France. (Obviously, you should take time off to go back to be with her when your baby is born.)
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Sorry to be gloom and doom but I presume that you have a doctor's certificate stating that your pregnant wife is perfectly able to undertake the journey to France and is not likely to give birth within 72 hours? Some airline companies insist on this towards the end of the pregnancy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Sorry to be gloom and doom but I presume that you have a doctor's certificate stating that your pregnant wife is perfectly able to undertake the journey to France and is not likely to give birth within 72 hours? Some airline companies insist on this towards the end of the pregnancy.
Thanks, I've got that covered.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Be very, very careful with this. Others have tried this before you and gotten into some real problems.



This is, indeed, the issue. The company that is contracting you - what country are they from? That may be the source of your problem. Many of these contracting deals are based on the assumption that contractors from the EU are covered by their home country social insurances, which isn't always the case. (Actually, these days, many EU countries don't carry over regular health care coverage from one EU country to the next - that only applies in general to "necessary care" available on an EHIC card.)

In France, you must have health care coverage. In order to get your wife a carte de séjour (residence permit) she will have to register at the prefecture as the spouse of an EU national and show what your "statut" is in France (i.e. to show that she is "joining" you here in France), as well as show that both you and she have health coverage. That may be where the stuff will hit the fan. Depends a bit on the local prefecture. Some are pickier than others about the rules.

The "good news" is that, although the French consider health care costs to be high if you have to pay it on your own, the charges are a bargain compared to what you'd be charged in the US as an uninsured patient - complications or no. OTOH, you will run into problems by trying to arrange for a birth here with no insurance coverage.

You may want to get back with the company you're contracting with. It appears they may have "misunderstood" the rules for working over here in France. Worst possible case might be to have your wife remain in the US until after the birth, at which time she can join you with the baby in France. (Obviously, you should take time off to go back to be with her when your baby is born.)
Cheers,
Bev
Thanks Bev.

My wife is coming with me. Worst case for me is to set up from Ireland and get covered from there. Private health from Ireland does cover in France. Fellow colleagues already confirmed this.
 

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Thanks Bev.

My wife is coming with me. Worst case for me is to set up from Ireland and get covered from there. Private health from Ireland does cover in France. Fellow colleagues already confirmed this.
That might actually work out for you - though you may want to consider staying in Ireland at least through the birth. Might make things a bit easier on your wife.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Thanks Charlot! I'll have someone look at it as I don't speak French, nor does my wife! Oh lord what are we doing!??! Need classes asap! Luckily my work language is English!

Yes, we'll be arriving in Aix next Tuesday! Kelly is originally from Maryland but we live in Arizona...until next week that is!

Would you know of an English speaking Doctor?


Rory
Wow, you are brave — or rather your wife is ! :) Sorry the links are in French, but I think you can get the gist of it — at least price wise.

I don’t live in the area so don’t know an English-speaking doctor, but you could search the archives in this Forum or perhaps start a new thread “English-speaking doctor/advice Aix-en-P” ? Also try asking at the provence anglo info site. Here, from their site, is a little info in English on giving birth in France:

The Birth of your Newborn - AngloINFO Provence, in Provence (France)

Bev usually mentions the US Embassy's list, here’s a link:

http://france.usembassy.gov/root/pdfs/mars-doctors2.pdf

Otherwise, do your best googling* and perhaps look into English/Irish/American groups in Aix to get some local advice on physicians/hospitals. Lastly, the AVF (welcoming organization) is likely to have helpful and knowledgeable French members who speak some English. They may be on vacation in summer though.

Aix-en-Provence - AVF - Accueil des Villes Françaises

Bon courage !

*here’s one link, but from 2006
Living in Aix-en-Provence: Medical & Dental
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Wow, you are brave — or rather your wife is ! :) Sorry the links are in French, but I think you can get the gist of it — at least price wise.

I don’t live in the area so don’t know an English-speaking doctor, but you could search the archives in this Forum or perhaps start a new thread “English-speaking doctor/advice Aix-en-P” ? Also try asking at the provence anglo info site. Here, from their site, is a little info in English on giving birth in France:

The Birth of your Newborn - AngloINFO Provence, in Provence (France)

Bev usually mentions the US Embassy's list, here’s a link:

http://france.usembassy.gov/root/pdfs/mars-doctors2.pdf

Otherwise, do your best googling* and perhaps look into English/Irish/American groups in Aix to get some local advice on physicians/hospitals. Lastly, the AVF (welcoming organization) is likely to have helpful and knowledgeable French members who speak some English. They may be on vacation in summer though.

Aix-en-Provence - AVF - Accueil des Villes Françaises

Bon courage !

*here’s one link, but from 2006
Living in Aix-en-Provence: Medical & Dental
Thanks Charlot! My wife certainly is the brave one and is the one pushing me to move! I'd have stayed here to be honest but she wants the experience. So when the opportunity arose, we jumped at it.

Thanks for all the info. I'd got a lot to do in such little time....
 
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