Is Immigrant Insurance Mandatory for US Visa?

Rear view of Ukrainian immigrant mother with child with luggage walking at train station, Ukrainian

Securing immigrant insurance for a US visa can be costly and depending on the coverage you choose, may or may not provide full protection. It’s important to understand the different types of immigrant insurance policies. Consider their coverage options before deciding which policy to purchase. In this article, we’ll break down the cost and coverage implications of securing immigrant insurance for a US visa.

What is Immigrant Insurance?

Immigrant insurance is a type of insurance that is designed to protect immigrants who are in the United States on a temporary visa. The policy offers protection against unforeseen events, such as loss of income, medical expenses, and repatriation costs. Different providers offer immigrant insurance policies, and the cost and coverage can vary significantly. It is important to read the small print and ensure that you understand what is covered before you purchase a policy.

What does US Immigrant Travel Insurance Cover?

The type of insurance you will need depends on your visa status and country of residence. There are three types of visas: temporary, non-immigrant, and immigrant. The coverage provided by immigrant travel insurance will depend on the type of visa you have. 

  • Temporary Visa- Temporary visas are for people who want to stay in the United States for a specific purpose and a limited amount of time. Some common examples are tourist visas and student visas. For example, temporary visa holders will usually be covered for medical expenses incurred while in the United States, However, they won’t be covered for any medical costs incurred after they leave the country.
  • Non-immigrant Visa- Non-immigrant visas are for people who want to stay in the United States temporarily but are not eligible for a temporary visa. Some common examples are work visas and family-based visas. Non-immigrant visa holders will usually be covered for medical expenses incurred while in the United States. And for medical costs incurred after they depart the country, but will not be covered for loss of property or personal belongings. 
  • Immigrant Visa- Immigrant visas are for people who want to become lawful permanent residents of the United States. Immigrant visa holders will usually be covered for all medical expenses incurred while in the United States. Regardless of when those expenses occur, as well as any loss of property or personal items

What Types of Coverage are Typically Included in Immigrant Insurance?

Immigrant insurance policies typically provide coverage for basic medical expenses in the US, including doctor visits, hospitalization, and prescription medications. In some policies, this may also include preventive care services such as vaccinations and routine check-ups. Other common coverage options include dental care and mental health services, emergency medical evacuation, and repatriation. Many policies also offer financial assistance in the case of a natural disaster or political unrest. Policies may also provide coverage for lost luggage, trip interruption, accidental death or dismemberment, and coverage for legal aid in certain situations.

The Cost Implications of Purchasing Immigrant Insurance

Cost is an important factor to consider when deciding to purchase immigrant insurance for a US visa. The exact cost of a policy will depend on the type of coverage you require, the duration of the policy, and the country of origin. Policies can range from about $50-$400 per month, but this can vary significantly depending on all two factors:


  1. If you require a longer-term policy than most applicants or have a higher risk for medical emergencies due to travel to a region with limited medical facilities, your monthly cost could increase substantially. 
  2. If you are from a country with higher medical costs associated with care, your premium may be more expensive than average.

It’s best to do your research and speak with an insurance provider to get an accurate estimate based on your needs.

When to Purchase Immigrant Insurance Before Filing a US Visa Application?

It is advisable to purchase immigrant insurance before filing a US visa application. This allows for ample time to secure coverage and provides the opportunity to research different policies to ensure all of your needs are met. It allows you to establish a timeline for when the coverage will start should you be approved. Be aware that certain immigrant insurance policies take some time to take effect, so it’s best to secure the policy early on in your visa application process:

  • Pay attention to its cost and coverage limitations. 
  • Be sure that the policy limits are enough for any medical care you or your dependents may need while in the US, as well as any travel arrangements. 
  • Understand what is covered and what may not be covered by the policy, such as repatriation costs or legal fees in cases of deportation or detention.

How to Find and Compare the Best Immigrant Insurance Plans?

Many people turn to professional brokers to help them find and compare the best immigrant insurance plans. Brokers are familiar with all the different types of policies available, as well as their respective coverage parameters, and they have access to a wide range of policies from various insurers. When working with a broker, it’s important to be clear about your needs in terms of cost, coverage, and other criteria for them to find you the best plan for your needs. Brokers will usually review various plans and explain the differences between them so that you can make an informed decision.

Pitfalls to Avoid When Purchasing Immigrant Insurance for a US Visa

When seeking immigrant insurance for a US visa, there are certain pitfalls to avoid. 

  1. Read the policy thoroughly – particularly about the coverage categories provided. In particular, visitors should make sure that their policy covers any medical treatments or hospital stays they may require while in the US.
  2. Prospective immigrants should double-check that the policy is approved for use by their country of origin when applying for a visa. As an example, some policies may only be valid with certain airlines and visas from specific countries. 
  3. Purchase insurance through a reputable broker or insurer to ensure they receive adequate coverage and protection in the event of an emergency.

Mandatory Requirements of Immigrant Insurance for US Visas

When applying for a US visa, you will be required to provide proof that you have purchased immigrant insurance to cover unexpected medical costs. According to the US Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs, this requirement is intended to protect both the applicant and the US government from any potential financial burden caused by unexpected medical costs. As such, the insurance policy must meet certain mandatory requirements to be accepted as proof of coverage:

  • The policy must include a limit of at least $100,000 in coverage and any deductible should not exceed $500 per year. 
  • The insurance must provide coverage for medically necessary and emergency services like hospitalization, diagnostics, surgery and doctor’s visits, repatriation of remains, evacuation, mental health care, and prescription drugs provided out-patient or within a hospital setting. 


Failure to provide either valid evidence or proof of sufficient immigrant insurance will result in the denial of your application.

Factors to Consider in Buying Immigrant Visa

When selecting an immigrant insurance plan for a US visa, there are several important factors to consider.

  1. Coverage Amount, a policy should provide adequate coverage for the duration of stay. This will vary depending on individual circumstances but be sure to look for a plan that covers all medical expenses, including hospitalization and medications.
  2. Cost is another factor to consider when purchasing immigrant insurance. Look for a plan that provides value in terms of coverage and cost. 
  3. Look at additional benefits, such as policy renewability, pre-existing condition coverage, and repatriation or evacuation coverage. 
  4. Be sure to read the fine print and ask questions regarding any details you don’t understand fully before committing to a policy.


Securing immigrant insurance for a US Visa has many cost and coverage implications. It is important to understand these implications before deciding to secure immigrant insurance. There are many different types of immigrant insurance, and each has its own set of benefits and drawbacks. It is important to carefully consider these factors before deciding which type of insurance to purchase.