Federal regulations require that all J-1 exchange visitors and J-2 dependents have health insurance that meets specified minimum requirements. Coverage must run for the entire duration of the exchange visitor’s program in the US.
Failure to maintain adequate insurance coverage (as detailed below) is a violation of US government regulations that results in immediate termination of your status.
We highly recommend that all J-1 exchange visitors and their dependents purchase health insurance coverage before traveling to the United States. We recommend that your health insurance coverage is active prior to traveling.
Minimum insurance coverage for J exchange visitors must provide:
- medical benefits of at least $100,000 per accident or illness
- payment for repatriation of remains in the amount of at least $25,000
- payment for medical evacuation to home country in the amount of at least $50,000
- a deductible not to exceed $500 per illness or accident
J-1 NYU Employees
Most of NYU’s Employee health insurance plans (excluding the High-Deductible Health Plan) meet all federal requirements except payment for repatriation and medical evacuation. Therefore, all J-1 exchange visitors and J-2 dependents with NYU Employee health insurance must purchase a supplemental policy that will bring their full health coverage up to minimum federal requirements.
You can purchase a supplemental plan from Betins that covers only medical evacuation and repatriation. Save a copy of your policy receipt as you will be required to show proof of the supplemental coverage upon registering with OGS before your J-1 can be validated.
Your NYU health insurance plan will begin on your first date of employment, so we strongly encourage you to also purchase travel insurance to cover you before your start date if you are arriving in the US early.
J-1 Exchange Visitors and J-2 Dependents Not Receiving NYU Health Insurance
If you are not eligible to receive benefits from NYU, you have two options:
1. Purchase an insurance policy offered by ISP or Compass to cover yourself and all J-2 dependents. We have verified that all ISP and Compass plans available to J-1 scholars meet or exceed the J-1 minimum regulations.
2. If you have other health insurance coverage that meets the J-1 requirements, you must have an agent from your health insurance provider certify that the plan meets specific minimum coverage requirements by completing and signing the J-1 insurance certification form. Only completed and signed certification waivers will be accepted.
Upon registration with OGS, all J-1 exchange visitors must verify that they (and any J-2 dependents) will be in compliance with the health insurance requirements for the duration of their program. You will need to upload a coverage confirmation letter from ISP or Compass, or a signed health insurance provider certification form during the online registration process.
Failure to maintain adequate health insurance at any time during your J-1 program will jeopardize your J-1 status and could result in termination of your status.
- Not all plans offer insurance coverage for pregnancy and maternity. If you or your spouse are pregnant, make sure to confirm with the provider that the plan you've selected covers pregnancy as a pre-existing condition.
- Not all plans cover dependents, and in some cases, the J-1 must be enrolled in the health insurance plan for the J-2 to be eligible.
Affordable Care Act Requirements
The Affordable Care Act mandates that all individuals who are considered U.S. residents for tax purposes (as defined by the IRS) carry adequate health insurance coverage. Most J-1 Exchange Visitors are considered nonresidents and are not subject to the mandate. In general, J-1 Exchange Visitors are considered nonresidents if they have been in the United States for less than 2 calendar years. It is the responsibility of the Exchange Visitors to determine whether or not they are subject to the mandate.
If you are eligible for benefits with NYU, the Dental Assistance Plan (for full-time employees) provides some free dental care. Take advantage of it!
- NYU Dental Clinic, 345 East 24th St. at 1st Ave. (M-Thu 8:30am-8pm., F 8:30am-4pm), after hours and weekends, call 212-998-9800
If you are not eligible for NYU benefits, there are private dentists located throughout the city. Do some research online or ask a friend for recommendations.
Selecting a Doctor
When looking for a doctor, it's best to consult with your health insurance provider to find a doctor who accepts your coverage. It’s also helpful to ask people you know for recommendations. Possibly, someone in your department at NYU will be able to recommend someone, or a friend who has visited or lived in the city may know of one. Also, the NYU Medical Center of NYU's School of Medicine is affiliated with a number of doctors and hospitals in the city.
Note: NYU's University Health Center on Broadway at the Washington Square campus is primarily a resource for students. Full-time employees can use the center at times for immunization shots or vision care.