Recommendations for Private Healthcare for Expat Family

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05 Jun 2017 18:41 by firmo Star rating. 5 posts Send private message

We move to Spain on 1 July. 

I understand that in order to get our residency, we must demonstrate that we have sufficient health cover. 

We are a healthy family of four (aged 38, 31, 8 and 7) and have no pre-existing conditions. We're moving to Alhaurin de la Torre in Malaga province. 

Does anybody have a recommendation for a healthcare provider / health insurance? 

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06 Jun 2017 15:56 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

I expect you know that if you work then you do not need private health cover,  as your Social Security payments entitle you and dependants to health cover.

Working also means you do not have to provide proof of sufficient income, but if you are not working then proof of income is required.

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06 Jun 2017 21:33 by firmo Star rating. 5 posts Send private message

My wife works remotely for a company in the UK (paid in to a UK bank account), but at present, I am unemployed (and have no plans to work until Sept/Oct). 

We can provide prove of income and bank statements.

Am I correct in thinking that we are therefore not entitled to public health service in Spain? 

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07 Jun 2017 20:48 by windtalker Star rating. 1719 posts Send private message

If your wife is going to be a fulltime Spanish resident and classed as employed and working from Spain ...then surely it would be beneficial to you if she became self employed in Spain and paid tax and insurance to the Spanish government ...the cost of a self employed stamp per month is approximately €250 this NI payment will cover the whole family for health care.


This message was last edited by windtalker on 07/06/2017.

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08 Jun 2017 08:26 by Tadd1966 Star rating in Los Montesinos. 1755 posts Send private message

If your wife is employed by a UK company then they may have obligations to pay her as a spanish resident and pay spanish  NI and tax etc as she is working in  spain

You need to check with her employer 

If your wife is seconded by her employer to Spain and paying UK tax and NI then might get health care via S1 (it is not only for pensioners check with DWP in Newcastle) 

Different  if your wife is self employed as then she would have to pay tax etc in Spain on sll income 

“The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance; it is the illusion of knowledge”

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08 Jun 2017 12:47 by firmo Star rating. 5 posts Send private message

Thanks for the information. Very much appreciated. 

The reason I was looking for private healthcare, and ideally wanting to get this set up BEFORE we move on 1 July, is because a Gestor suggested that it was essential to have healthcare set-up before we could apply for residency. 

Can anyone verify that? 

(Not sure if this also makes any difference, but... At present, I am the only one with a NIE; my wife and children will apply for theirs when we apply for residency.)

My apologies in advance if I'm asking questions with obvious answers. 

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08 Jun 2017 13:02 by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5247 posts Send private message

Whilst you need health cover to register on the EU Citizen's Register,  you do not need an NIE to do so.   In fact if you move to Spain and thus need to register immediately  you will not be allowed to apply for just an NIE.  The number on the Registration Cert. will be your NIE


If you take up employment then your social security payments will entitle you to medical cover and so you will not need private cover.


This message was last edited by johnzx on 08/06/2017.

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08 Jun 2017 13:37 by Tadd1966 Star rating in Los Montesinos. 1755 posts Send private message

If your wife intends to work in Spain (as you said remotely) she needs to register either via her employer and be employed by them as a worker based in Spain and pay the relevant taxes and NI

as stated check with her employer on how this will be registerd etc. in Spain

You wll not need private health care if you are working (employed or self employed) and paying into the Spanish system


“The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance; it is the illusion of knowledge”

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08 Jun 2017 17:24 by Roberto Star rating in Torremolinos. 4533 posts Send private message

Roberto´s avatar

John, the OP already has an NIE, and his family as you say, will get theirs when they apply for residency (i.e. register on the EU citizens register - although most gestors probably still call this residency, so for the sake of clarity, let's for once just agree that it means the same thing!)

Although as you point out, since they are "moving" to Spain they should register immediately, in reality there's no great urgency to do so - although with school age children it will no doubt be in his interest to do so fairly quickly.

I would suggest that 1) he makes sure he has EHICs to cover the whole family for emergencies, and 2) get some quotes for private cover, as initially this may be simpler than figuring out his wife's employment status (which is probably a subject for another thread)

Having never used private health insurance in Spain, unfortunately I cannot recommend any providers, but surely someone here can answer his question? Sanitas are one of the best known providers, so maybe start there? They probably offer a family package.





"Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please"

Mark Twain




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