New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

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gera
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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by gera » Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:11 pm

Gaybutton wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:09 pm
We can question it, debate about it, listen to lawyers, or whatever from now to Kingdom Come, but the bottom line is we're not going to know much of anything until the new regulations come into effect and people start going to immigration and apply for visas and visa extensions.
You are, of course, right. What bothers me in this situation is that all talk was about health insurance requirements on tourists. But they started with expats. This, along with enforcement of TM30 which mostly affects expats, tells me where (unfortunately) their priorities are ...

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Gaybutton » Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:34 pm

gera wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:11 pm
This, along with enforcement of TM30 which mostly affects expats, tells me where (unfortunately) their priorities are ...
What I'd like to know is which set(s) of foreigners are mainly the culprits of dishonesty about their locations, liars about their monthly income, and "skipper outers" of hospital debt. If it is primarily American, Australian, UK, and European farang who do these things, then I can understand why Thailand is getting so paranoid about it. I think it's mostly farang from those areas who retire in Thailand.

But if other sets of foreigners are the ones mainly responsible for wrongdoing, why pick on us? I truly believe most farang retirees are honest, pay their debts, and meet the minimum financial requirements. But sometimes I feel it is assumed we are cheaters or even criminals and we have to satisfy immigration officials that simply is not so.

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Dodger » Sat Oct 19, 2019 9:16 am

Up2u wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 3:23 pm
Had a lively discussion with 2lz2p this morning on whether the new regulations, effective Oct 31, apply to old non O-A visa annual extensions or simply the new O-A visas.
According to the Superintendent of Chonburi Immigration, those who have an Extension of Stay Stamp (Retirement) on an O-A Visa are not required to have health insurance. In short, retirees are not required to have health insurance now.

He also indicated this could change in the future.

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Gaybutton » Sat Oct 19, 2019 9:56 am

Dodger wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 9:16 am
In short, retirees are not required to have health insurance now.
Actually, I have no objection to retirees being required to have health insurance. I think unless a person is independently wealthy, it would be idiotic to live in a foreign country without health insurance - good health insurance.

My objection would be the required amounts and the requirement that it has to be Thai health insurance. I think that is unfair, creates a monopoly, and I don't know how much I would trust a Thai health insurance company in the first place.

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Up2u » Sat Oct 19, 2019 10:11 pm

Gaybutton wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 9:56 am
Actually, I have no objection to retirees being required to have health insurance.
Well, I do object, as I have friends who simply can't get health insurance here because of age or pre-existing conditions, not because they don't want to. Not a question of costs, as they have money, condos and cars here and are certainly not going to renege on a hospital bill. They are basically uninsurable here by Thai insurance standards (of course, denying insurance because of pre-existing conditions is now unlawful in USA.)

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Gaybutton » Sun Oct 20, 2019 1:44 am

Up2u wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 10:11 pm
Not a question of costs, as they have money
You have a good point. If your friends are independently wealthy, then there ought to be a means of self-insuring or the Thai insurance companies ought to be required to make insurance available regardless of age or pre-existing conditions.

If Thailand is going to grandfather in these new rules, then this is likely to end up in court because of how it affects people such as your friends who have lived in Thailand for years, are independently wealthy, bought condos, cars, or whatever, and then find themselves forced out.

Of course, if your friends are caught in the middle of this because they hold the O-A visa, they need to do whatever they need to do to get an O visa instead. Then they won't need to worry.

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Dodger » Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:49 pm

Apparently the U.S. is about to mandate health insurance for immigrants, although it appears as if they will provide the option of either having insurance, or, having sufficient funds in the bank to cover health care (self insurance).

Up2u does has a good point. I also have friends over here who are either over the eligible age to obtain insurance in Thailand, or, have preexisting conditions which are not acceptable to the insurance companies. The only viable option for those in this category would be "self insurance", unless in fact Thailand is just going to tell them to pack their bags and hit the door, which I seriously doubt would happen.

As always, these new or revised immigration policies just get tossed out there without any real planning. They introduce these policies the same way they drive their cars. They just pull into a busy intersection without looking or showing any concern whatsoever for oncoming traffic, assess what the damage will be if they don't stop or veer out of the way, and then adjust their driving to the flow of the traffic after scaring the shit out of everyone. I guess it's a cultural thing!

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Gaybutton » Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:37 pm

Dodger wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:49 pm
unless in fact Thailand is just going to tell them to pack their bags and hit the door, which I seriously doubt would happen.
If you doubt that would happen, what do you think will happen?

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Dodger » Mon Oct 21, 2019 1:31 pm

Gaybutton wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:37 pm
Dodger wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:49 pm
unless in fact Thailand is just going to tell them to pack their bags and hit the door, which I seriously doubt would happen.
If you doubt that would happen, what do you think will happen?
$$Tea Money$$, which is probably Immigration's preferred method of compliance.

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Re: New Health Insurance Requirements Announced O-A

Post by Dodger » Tue Oct 22, 2019 9:50 am

Gaybutton wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:38 am

Another question that is not yet clear to me. A farang obtains the O-A visa in his home country, then goes to Thailand to retire. When the O-A is about to expire and if the farang does not want the health insurance from a Thai insurance company, does he have to return to his home country to apply for another O-A or, since he is already living in Thailand, can he then get the O visa?
The entire Thai Visa System obviously needs to be totally restructured and simplified. The list of Visa Categories has grown over time and is outdated, cumbersome, conflicting, and the source of so much confusion.

According to the way Thai Visa Categories are defined, an "O" Visa is primarily intended for those who will be living with a Thai family (the assumption being married to a Thai), and/or, involved in some sort of substantiated volunteer work during their one year stay. The "O-A" Visa is intended for those who are not married to a Thai, where performing any type of work in Thailand is strictly prohibited. If they would have simply created a category called "Retirement Visa", and categorized a retiree as a permanent resident, it would have been much simpler for them, as well as for us.

As we already know, phase one of this new health insurance mandate only involves those with O-A Visa's which are obtained from a foreigners home country. A foreigner can not switch from an O-A Visa to an O Visa in his home country unless in fact he is married to a Thai and/or performing some sort of approved volunteer work during his stay in Thailand.

As far as this health insurance mandate goes, I think it would be a waste of time to attempt to toggle between different visa types in an effort to avoid having health insurance for the mere fact that we're only in "Phase One" of the mandate, and it's highly probable that everyone will be effected by this mandate at some juncture.

PERSONAL OPINION ONLY
I don't believe that any foreigner will be forced to obtain health insurance from a Thai insurance company in order to comply with this new mandate. I know this contradicts a lot of what we're hearing right now, but I just don't see this happening.

When public services like heath insurance companies are being selected, sponsored, and approved by a government, and mandated as being the sole source of these services, they are a monopolist in the sense that other health insurance companies are not allowed to sell their products within this market. If the prices of the insurance are reasonable so that affordable heath insurance can be obtained by the majority of foreigners, and the quality of health care is acceptable to those having to use these services, this could be considered acceptable practice. But, with the exception of one of the approved Thai health care companies (Pacific Cross) which is more costly, the others do not allow free choice of hospitals - placing a foreigner in a situation where he would have to rely on health care from a substandard health care facility (Thai Government Hospital), which is not acceptable practice.

This is the reason I think they'll have to revise this mandate.

Personally, I decided to pick up health insurance earlier this year for the mere fact that I knew things were headed in this direction, and having additional coverage to support my self-insurance plan doesn't hurt either. If I was someone who didn't have health insurance yet, I would wait until the dust settles on this new mandate before taking any action. As always, they don't even know where they're going with this yet.

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