Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Living in Switzerland > Daily life  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09.03.2021, 18:44
Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2021
Location: UK
Posts: 6
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 3 Times in 2 Posts
Bushy has no particular reputation at present
Krankenkasse question

Sorry about the length of this post.


My partner and I are retired and our main home is in the UK (where we are at the moment). We also rent an apartment in Switzerland. We got B permits some years ago to allow us to occasionally stay for over 90 days continuously, and we are on the Gemeinde residents list. However, the Kantonal tax office agreed with our request that we continue to pay all our taxes in the UK and pay no tax in Switzerland.


We obtain all our routine medical care in the UK, and until now, we have been relying on our EHICs to cover us for urgent health needs when in Switzerland, but these ceased to be valid in CH on 1/1/21. Travel insurance is problematic, as I can find no policy which allows a trip length longer than 90 days for over 65s with cover for my hobbies of ski mountaineering and paragliding.Using the Form S1 process would (I think) require us to declare that we live in CH, which isn’t true, and we’d then loseour right to use the NHS.


So I’m wondering aboutKrankenkasse, but obviously that’s quite costly, and my impression is that if we ever signed up for that, it would be year-round, and impossible to stop the payments without a departure certificate, in which case we’d lose our residence permits.


My question is: which of the following applies?


1) As we have B permits, Krankenkasse is compulsory for us.
2) As we are UK domiciled, we’re not eligible for Krankenkasse.
3) It’s up to us whether we take out Krankenkasse or not.
4) Our situation is anomalous and we’re in a legal limbo.


Thanks for any advice!
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 09.03.2021, 19:31
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 32,607
Groaned at 2,592 Times in 1,849 Posts
Thanked 39,702 Times in 18,716 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

I suspect all of the above.

Tom
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank st2lemans for this useful post:
  #3  
Old 09.03.2021, 21:33
kri's Avatar
kri kri is offline
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 2,491
Groaned at 54 Times in 40 Posts
Thanked 2,355 Times in 1,168 Posts
kri has a reputation beyond reputekri has a reputation beyond reputekri has a reputation beyond reputekri has a reputation beyond reputekri has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

How about an international health insurance with a high deductible for non accident? I am not sure if they exist but I would start with Bupa and explain the situation.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09.03.2021, 22:07
Island Monkey's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Wallis
Posts: 6,598
Groaned at 115 Times in 80 Posts
Thanked 7,384 Times in 3,367 Posts
Island Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

How on earth did you get a B permit without being resident in Switzerland and without health insurance That must be a first!!!
Reply With Quote
The following 5 users would like to thank Island Monkey for this useful post:
  #5  
Old 10.03.2021, 10:59
Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2021
Location: UK
Posts: 6
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 3 Times in 2 Posts
Bushy has no particular reputation at present
Re: Krankenkasse question

Thanks for the replies so far.


@kri, I couldn't find a suitable international health policy, but will look into the Bupa option; perhaps I need to approach them directly.


@doropfiz, thanks for the link to that thread. I had a face-to-face meeting with two officials at the Kantonal tax offices to negotiate continuing to pay all our tax in UK rather than CH, and convincing them that our centre of life was in the UK was the key issue! So I'm relieved that they didn't then say that meant we had to give up our permits.


@Island Monkey, because we applied for permits that didn't entitle us to work in CH, we only had to show proof of sufficient regular income to avoid us needing state support, and medical/accident insurance. Our EHICs were accepted as evidence of the latter.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Bushy for this useful post:
  #6  
Old 10.03.2021, 11:33
Island Monkey's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Wallis
Posts: 6,598
Groaned at 115 Times in 80 Posts
Thanked 7,384 Times in 3,367 Posts
Island Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

I guess there are 3 options.

1. Take a 90 day travel insurance policy. Fly home for a few days. Come back with new 90 day policy.

2. As suggested get insurance with BUPA etc.

3. Become fully resident in Switzerland. Note Krankenkasse does not automatically cover you for accidents, you have to add it on. Also accident insurance through krankenkasse does not cover a large amount of mountain rescue and helicopter rescue, so you’d also need to become a Rega member or similar.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 10.03.2021, 11:54
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Greater Zurich
Posts: 604
Groaned at 12 Times in 9 Posts
Thanked 150 Times in 99 Posts
higgsboson is considered knowledgeablehiggsboson is considered knowledgeablehiggsboson is considered knowledgeable
Re: Krankenkasse question

Quote:
View Post
Note Krankenkasse does not automatically cover you for accidents, you have to add it on. Also accident insurance through krankenkasse does not cover a large amount of mountain rescue and helicopter rescue, so you’d also need to become a Rega member or similar.
Sorry for the irrelevant question, but I had this long in mind.

Does "not having accident insurance" mean that your insurer will refuse to pay at all, for problems caused by an accident, or that they will be treated "normally" and counted on your normal deductible (the max 2500.- CHF one)?

Because I believe health problems accepted by accident insurance are not counted on the normal deductible.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10.03.2021, 12:08
Island Monkey's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Wallis
Posts: 6,598
Groaned at 115 Times in 80 Posts
Thanked 7,384 Times in 3,367 Posts
Island Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond reputeIsland Monkey has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

Quote:
View Post
Sorry for the irrelevant question, but I had this long in mind.

Does "not having accident insurance" mean that your insurer will refuse to pay at all, for problems caused by an accident, or that they will be treated "normally" and counted on your normal deductible (the max 2500.- CHF one)?

Because I believe health problems accepted by accident insurance are not counted on the normal deductible.
Yes. If you don’t have accident insurance through your employer, or your personal health insurance and you have an accident, you will have to pay out of your own pocket.

If you have accident added to your health insurance, your normal deductibles etc apply. Through your employer, then no deductible.
Reply With Quote
The following 4 users would like to thank Island Monkey for this useful post:
  #9  
Old 10.03.2021, 13:23
Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2021
Location: UK
Posts: 6
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 3 Times in 2 Posts
Bushy has no particular reputation at present
Re: Krankenkasse question

@Island Monkey, your suggestion of returning to the UK every 90 days is our current "least worst option". An annual multi-trip policy including cover for my risky hobbies would set us back around a fifth of the cost of Krankenkasse. At the moment we'd have to quarantine for 10 days in both directions, which is an unattractive prospect, but obviously that shouldn't be a permanent requirement.

I would be prepared to bite the bullet and shell out for Krankenkasse if we could just stop paying as soon as travelling back and forth became easier. However, what I've read about the process suggests (as I wrote above) that this could jeopardise our permits and hence the amount of time we could (legally) spend in CH. BTW, I've emailed a few of the companies which provide Krankenkasse to ask if they offer a suitable product for our needs, and had negative replies.

I certainly agree about Rega. We've been patrons for a long time; it's a fantastic service and amazingly good value for money.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10.03.2021, 13:58
fatmanfilms's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Verbier
Posts: 21,376
Groaned at 461 Times in 352 Posts
Thanked 23,091 Times in 11,824 Posts
fatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

Quote:
View Post
@Island Monkey, your suggestion of returning to the UK every 90 days is our current "least worst option". An annual multi-trip policy including cover for my risky hobbies would set us back around a fifth of the cost of Krankenkasse. At the moment we'd have to quarantine for 10 days in both directions, which is an unattractive prospect, but obviously that shouldn't be a permanent requirement.

I would be prepared to bite the bullet and shell out for Krankenkasse if we could just stop paying as soon as travelling back and forth became easier. However, what I've read about the process suggests (as I wrote above) that this could jeopardise our permits and hence the amount of time we could (legally) spend in CH. BTW, I've emailed a few of the companies which provide Krankenkasse to ask if they offer a suitable product for our needs, and had negative replies.

I certainly agree about Rega. We've been patrons for a long time; it's a fantastic service and amazingly good value for money.
If you are retired & getting a UK pension, the UK would cover your health & accident insurance in CH with a 300 excess. Having a B permit means you are living in CH, UK may judge you dual tax resident.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 10.03.2021, 14:20
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Nyon
Posts: 6,768
Groaned at 394 Times in 290 Posts
Thanked 9,338 Times in 4,381 Posts
bowlie has a reputation beyond reputebowlie has a reputation beyond reputebowlie has a reputation beyond reputebowlie has a reputation beyond reputebowlie has a reputation beyond reputebowlie has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

Rega is NOT insurance.

Quote:
Patronage contributions are deemed to be donations. In grateful acknowledgement of patrons' support, Rega can, at its own discretion and within the bounds of its resources, waive or reduce the costs of any emergency services that it has provided or organised on their behalf, in the event that insurance companies or any other third party are not liable to pay and thus not required to reimburse the costs of the rescue operation, whether wholly or in part.
Any Medical costs would be in addition to the emergency service.

Quote:
Benefits relating to repatriation flights from abroad are only granted to patrons who are permanently domiciled in Switzerland (irrelevant of their nationality) and to Swiss nationals living abroad. Repatriation flights to locations outside Switzerland are possible, but incur costs that Rega is not able to cover itself.
From Rega.ch website
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank bowlie for this useful post:
  #12  
Old 10.03.2021, 17:20
Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2021
Location: UK
Posts: 6
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 3 Times in 2 Posts
Bushy has no particular reputation at present
Re: Krankenkasse question

@fatmanfilms, my understanding of the process for using the fact that I am receiving a UK pension to get the UK to cover medical and accident costs in CH is that I would have to obtain a form S1 in the UK and then register it with the Gemeinsame Einrichtung KVG. I'm rather frustrated to be unable to find written details anywhere of the (UK) regulations applying to this entitlement, so if anyone can point me towards those I would be delighted!

As I wrote in my original post, I think we would have to declare that CH is our home (which is untrue) and give up our access to the NHS if we went down that path. Also, the KVG website (regarding the form S1 process) includes the rather scary "Your statements on the questionnaire are instrumental in clarifying whether a registration is basically possible or whether you are subject to compulsory health insurance in Switzerland", so I'm concerned there is a small risk that we could end up being told we've been illegal for years, and must not only pay for Krankenkasse from now on but also cough up retrospectively. It could be argued that if we're deemed to have been Swiss residents all this time, then we've never been entitled to UK-issued EHICs.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 10.03.2021, 17:43
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: Up there over the fog
Posts: 3,701
Groaned at 431 Times in 322 Posts
Thanked 3,754 Times in 1,955 Posts
JackieH has a reputation beyond reputeJackieH has a reputation beyond reputeJackieH has a reputation beyond reputeJackieH has a reputation beyond reputeJackieH has a reputation beyond reputeJackieH has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

Wow- never heard of anyone having B permit and living in UK and only paying taxes in UK. As others have said, I am really not sure this can be legitimate.

Form S1 is for those of UK retirement age and above, and dependant spouse even if below that age- so does not apply if you have taken early retirement. But you have to be living, be resident in Switzerland, have no Swiss pension or income. You also retain the right to use the NHS in UK. Insurance covers both health and accidents, you have to pay 300.- franchise before it kicks in, then 10% up to 1000.-, per year. However, I believe you had to apply before end of December last year- but not sure.

When we came to live here (having retained a small home in UK) - OH was not of official retirement age- as he retired at 62 and we moved when he was 63. So we had to pay full Swiss insurance until he became 65- and could then take up S1 exemption, and me (5 years younger) as his dependant.

We have to pay for all medical care, send bills to KVG Soleure- and they reimburse us minus franchise and 10% as described above.There are no limits re dangerous sports, etc. We also have EHIC for partial cover in Europe. Only problem is, as all people with compulsory health insurance in CH are automatically covered for up to double Swiss estimated cost abroad- we cannot find an insurance product to top up EHIC for Europe, and none at all to cover us at all outsdide Europe. Some are available, but not for our age (70/75) and especially pre-existing conditons. So when we travel to Europe- we take a large risk, and would have to be repatriated as fast as poss to UK or CH. We are also members of REGA. But our dreams of returning to US, go to Tasmania OZ and NZ as planned, etc, will just have to be shelved. The only other option would be to pay for Swiss Insurance all year- just to cover this. We could use our UK address for Travel Insurance- and they would be happy to take out premiums- but should anything happen, I am sure they would cotton on, shout 'fraud' and refuse to pay.

We are trying to find an Insurer who would accept up on a special contract, to cover excess above EHIC - but so far, no good.

REGA is happy to have people as a members/donors (and OH loves that his card says 'Gonner' on it) - as long as you have a Swiss address, and will only repatriate you to that Swiss adress or a Swiss hospital- and then if you are not covered for Swiss health/accident you'd be in big trouble.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 10.03.2021, 18:55
Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2021
Location: UK
Posts: 6
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 3 Times in 2 Posts
Bushy has no particular reputation at present
Re: Krankenkasse question

@JackieH, many thanks for your detailed advice. It sounds as if I was very lucky with the tax officials whom I saw. I have to say I was totally blown away that they would not only talk to me face to face, which would be quite impossible in the UK, but also in English! Regarding legitimacy, one of the officials was the head of the department. They wrote to the Gemeinde to tell them to rescind the tax bill they had sent me which had arrived a couple of weeks after our B permits. However, they made it very clear that if our circumstances changed, e.g. we bought a property in CH rather than renting a flat (described in the contract as a "Ferienwohnung") then we would have to have another conversation.

What you've written confirms that to use the S1 process we would have to declare that we are Swiss residents, which is untrue and could lose us our exceptional CH tax-free status. We spend too much time in the UK for HMRC to accept that we aren't liable for tax here, so we might then end up with a choice between double taxation or giving up our permits.

Regarding Rega, we used to be registered with them at our UK address, and the answer to the fourth question on www.rega.ch/en/rega-patron/patron-service?rnw-widget=goenner-service makes it clear that non-residents can be patrons. However, their repatriation benefits are for Swiss citizens and residents only. Yes, we were also entertained by "Gonner"!
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Bushy for this useful post:
  #15  
Old 10.03.2021, 21:10
3Wishes's Avatar
Moderately Amused
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Bern area
Posts: 11,483
Groaned at 92 Times in 87 Posts
Thanked 20,004 Times in 8,851 Posts
3Wishes has a reputation beyond repute3Wishes has a reputation beyond repute3Wishes has a reputation beyond repute3Wishes has a reputation beyond repute3Wishes has a reputation beyond repute3Wishes has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Krankenkasse question

Quote:
View Post
Rega is NOT insurance.

Any Medical costs would be in addition to the emergency service.

From Rega.ch website
I'm a patron of Rega for many years and unfortunately needed their help a few years back. I can confim they do not pay any medical costs - the health insurance deals with that. And when you're in a foreign country, be prepared to pay up front for help.

Rega sends a bill for the administrative and transport costs, which you then submit to your insurance. Insurance pays what they pay (mine paid a small amount of transport but not admin). Then Rega decides whether or not to write off the balance.
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
What “extras” will my Krankenkasse pay for? Dbibeau Insurance 12 08.01.2021 20:30
Krankenkasse recommendations Island Monkey Insurance 7 29.01.2014 20:08
Krankenkasse - how to use the card? dowser Insurance 2 08.10.2012 12:35
advice on Krankenkasse, slipped through the net and now I need it. moorecroft Insurance 6 01.07.2010 08:52
Krankenkasse with gym membership contributions mrkprc Insurance 5 01.10.2007 16:20


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 03:40.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0