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Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Old Mar 18th 2012, 7:44 pm
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Default Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Hi,

My Company is sending me to USA for two years and i have a couple of questions i need help with:

1. My L1-B has been approved and I am awaiting paperwork from the US so i can book my interview at the US embassy in London. When will my wife be able to apply for her spouse visa and what is the procedure?

2. When she does fly out with me is there any medical insurance that will cover pregnancy? She is currently 5 weeks pregnant and she'll be coming back to London at around 26 weeks pregnant and then hopefully give birth in London. So i wanted to know if there was cover for the 12th & 20th week ultrasound scans?

Many thanks in advance.
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Old Mar 18th 2012, 9:23 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

There will not be cover for her at all unless your employer is offering you health insurance or you purchase (usually expensive) cover individually. Bear in mind that even in routine pregnancies there are also blood tests etc that are run during those time periods, and if she develops any kind of complication or (heaven forbid) early delivery, you MUST have cover or will be easily bankrupted.
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Old Mar 18th 2012, 9:42 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by UK_Lad View Post
2. When she does fly out with me is there any medical insurance that will cover pregnancy?
Be absolutely certain to negotiate health care insurance with your company before you sign a contract. Be certain they pay 100% of the premiums. Be certain that the health insurance they offer you covers pregnancy as a pre-existing condition. If they refuse to do any of those 3 or the pregnancy is not covered... I suggest you pass on the job.

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Old Mar 18th 2012, 9:49 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Hello and welcome

My paperwork was done the same time as my OHs also by the company lawyers. I went to the embassy at the same appointment and was asked no questions at all. I'm the L2 to his L1a.

I'm on the company health insurance. We still pay 20% and that works out at around $20 for every blood test and $60 for every scan. Maternity care isn't the same here as the UK. She won't get 12 and 20 week ultrasounds. You get an ultrasound as soon as you register with an OBGYN (and you sign upfront and pay upfront for your whole treatment through to birth). You also get a pap, HIV test, and a few other tests along with full blood work. Then you go every month for appointments. You get tested for more stuff that you would in the UK (like strep B). It varies state to state as well, so this is just my Texas experience. In general, it's a lot more medical and all done by an obgyn rather than midwives.

If your OH wants more info, she can always pm me when you have done enough posts. Let's just say they are a lot more erm, using of latex gloves in this country than the UK
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Old Mar 18th 2012, 11:16 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by UK_Lad View Post
Hi,

My Company is sending me to USA for two years and i have a couple of questions i need help with:

1. My L1-B has been approved and I am awaiting paperwork from the US so i can book my interview at the US embassy in London. When will my wife be able to apply for her spouse visa and what is the procedure?

2. When she does fly out with me is there any medical insurance that will cover pregnancy? She is currently 5 weeks pregnant and she'll be coming back to London at around 26 weeks pregnant and then hopefully give birth in London. So i wanted to know if there was cover for the 12th & 20th week ultrasound scans?

Many thanks in advance.
Why come back to London to pop the kid out - if your US company health insurance covers it I'd bang it out in the US and then the kid is automatically dual citizen (afaik) - potentially a pretty useful status for the kid when they grow up (but with some downsides).
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 1:43 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by UK_Lad View Post
Hi,

My Company is sending me to USA for two years and i have a couple of questions i need help with:

1. My L1-B has been approved and I am awaiting paperwork from the US so i can book my interview at the US embassy in London. When will my wife be able to apply for her spouse visa and what is the procedure?

2. When she does fly out with me is there any medical insurance that will cover pregnancy? She is currently 5 weeks pregnant and she'll be coming back to London at around 26 weeks pregnant and then hopefully give birth in London. So i wanted to know if there was cover for the 12th & 20th week ultrasound scans?

Many thanks in advance.
As per the other responder, my husband's paperwork was done the same time as mine. I was the L-1, he was the L-2.

Was your employer not aware that you had a wife who would be going with you?

Have you already enquired about what health insurance your employer is offering and if it covers pregnancy?
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 2:28 am
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Hi,

You should start with our health care wiki:

http://britishexpats.com/wiki/Health_Insurance

A key issue is whether this is a "pre-existing condition". In the USA you don't say, break your arm and then get on the phone and call insurance companies and buy a policy, then show up at the hospital and say "treat me it's on the insurance company". The broken arm was a "pre-existing condition" prior to your buying insurance.

Now for pregnancy it's a bit tricky. If you are joining your company's health insurance, i.e. a 'group policy' that was negotiated by the company and is offered to their employees and family, then pregnancy is NOT considered a pre-existing condition. The insurance policy should cover it. You will need to see how much of it they cover. There is a monthly charge (the 'premium') but how much of it you pay and how much the company pays is part of your work agreement. Some people have their employer pay 100%, many more people have to pay 100% themselves. Then there is the issue of 'deductibles' (the amount you pay first before insurance starts paying) and the issue of 'copays' (the amount you pay for each treatment). Then there is what they call 'co-insurance' whereby you pay 10% or 20% of the treatment cost and the company pays the other 80-90%. All depends on the policy.

On a more positive note there is also the issue that many insurance companies treat maternity care different, or outside of the normal deductibles and copays. Sometimes the insurance companies realize that it simply makes financial sense for them to encourage 'better' maternity care to have a health pregnancy and baby rather than to skimp on maternity care and end up with a much more expensive baby down the road. For example we had a total of 1 copay, our first visit to the OB/GYN. The next 12 visits or whatever there was no copay. With the very good insurance we had the cost of our first child was about $400 US, but $350 of that was because we upgrade our recovery room at the hospital and $5 was because we used the TV in the delivery room because we were bored waiting for the kid to arrive.

You will, however, have to ensure that the insurance company recognizes your NHS coverage as 'credible pre-existing coverage' such that your policy in the USA kicks in from day 1 of your arrival, and there is not a 30-60-90-180 day delay as is the case with some policies.

If you attempt to buy 'individual policy' outside of the company's offerings, then the insurance companies CAN claim pregnancy is a pre-existing condition. They don't have to pay ANYTHING for any medical work, procedure, doctor visit, scan, test etc. related to the pregnancy.

So, is your head spinning after all of this? I hope so.

What you really need to do is have a long sit down / phone call with the HR people IN THE USA who know this stuff inside and out. Don't rely on the local UK folks who probably aren't as experienced with the ins and outs of US health care rules and regulations. Get on the phone, or send over and email with detailed questions about:

* is my spouse covered
* is their a waiting period for coverage to start?
* do I need a note from the NHS to show prior credible coverage?
* what is the premium each month?
* what is the co-pay for maternity visits?
* what is the hospital co-pay?
* what is the test co-pay?
* what is the level of co-insurance?
* what is the deductible on this plan?

etc., etc.

Sorting out the insurance is more important than your salary. If you screw up here, the bills could easily wipe out years of your salary. We had a member who didn't have insurance and slipped from a ladder and ended up with $450k in medical bills in about THREE DAYS of intensive care. That's not a typo. Our simple, non-complicated birth of our second child cost $16,000 if we didn't have insurance (it was less than $1,000 since we did have insurance).

Good luck with the new job and negotiations, and congratulations on the new baby.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 4:46 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by UK_Lad View Post

She is currently 5 weeks pregnant and she'll be coming back to London at around 26 weeks pregnant and then hopefully give birth in London...
Many thanks in advance.
Will the airline even let her fly at that stage? Will the NHS even consider her resident or that birth an emergency that they wouldn't possibly look for reimbursement? That all depends on the local health authority.

Knock the kid out in the US, it'll have duel citizenship and family can come visit, much easier.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 4:58 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Also, I think that if the child is born in the US then you will need to claim British citizenship for it at the UK embassy. You will also need to obtain a UK passport in addition to a US passport - otherwise the child will be treated as a US citizen on entry to the UK.

Child will enter and leave the US on its US passport and will present the UK passport on entry to the UK.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 5:23 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

sorry for asking maybe an odd question but people here go on about the bills etc for healthcare


what about all these illegals and hispanics etc etc that are all pumping out kids rapidly to make anchor children (US citizens etc) I doubt any of those people pay their bills when they go to the top hospitals and I doubt they give birth on the street either

so what gives are you guys paying for their births too? I can see some people why when they bring their old relatives they would rather plead poverty and take a chance rather than fight with insurance people.

Again my gut feeling hospitals must write off millions in bills.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 5:26 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by cpe111 View Post
Also, I think that if the child is born in the US then you will need to claim British citizenship for it at the UK embassy.
Not claim it but document it either with a birth registration or UK passport. The child is British at birth (assuming parent is British otherwise than by descent) and would still be even without the passport or birth registration.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 5:40 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by messirules View Post
what about all these illegals and hispanics etc etc that are all pumping out kids rapidly to make anchor children (US citizens etc) I doubt any of those people pay their bills when they go to the top hospitals and I doubt they give birth on the street either

so what gives are you guys paying for their births too? I can see some people why when they bring their old relatives they would rather plead poverty and take a chance rather than fight with insurance people.

Again my gut feeling hospitals must write off millions in bills.
You're talking about emergency care - someone arriving at the hospital in active labour and uninsured. We're talking (mostly) about prenatal care, which is not classed as emergency. Yes, the OP's wife could come over uninsured, have no prenatal care, and gamble that nothing goes wrong requiring immediate treatment. She could gamble that, in the event that something does go wrong and she receives emergency treatment, they are somehow able to duck the bills without getting bankrupted by them.

But that's not my idea of a low-stress pregnancy.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 5:59 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
Will the airline even let her fly at that stage?
Most will, most of those would probably ask for a doctor's note dated within the last 24-72 hours though.

The wife got asked if she had a note just recently on two different airlines. We were carrying a 5 month old baby so she must have gotten shacked up pretty darn quick! Nope, just too many cakes.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 6:08 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Oooh, I would have been furious!
It's before the 3rd trimester so should be fine, although I'd probably get a doctors note just in case.
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Old Mar 19th 2012, 7:48 pm
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Default Re: Moving to USA on L1-B With Pregnant Wife

Originally Posted by cpe111 View Post
...You will also need to obtain a UK passport in addition to a US passport - otherwise the child will be treated as a US citizen on entry to the UK.
Won't need to get a UK passport unless they intended to move back to the UK. US passport will be fine for holidays, which is much cheaper than a consular issued UK passport.

They can always get the UK passport in the UK while on holiday. Registering the birth with the embassy in the US is worth doing, IMO, but I would wait to get the certificate in the UK the following September was it would be 10GBP v $140 ish.
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