AUTO & HEALTH INSURANCE

HEALTH INSURANCE in MEXICO

If you have health insurance coverage in the United States or in Canada, it will not cover you for major medical, pharmaceutical drugs or doctor visits in Mexico.

The only short term health insurance you can obtain for coverage is travel insurance for your health care needs during a short term stay in any foreign country.

Mexico Living Now strongly suggests you buy travel insurance until you find a good health insurance company for your major medical needs in Mexico.

There are various major medical insurance plans and they all vary by selected deductable and co-pay amounts.  The choice is yours to make with any of the health insurance plans you chose.  Price shopping is definitely suggested.  Many times, if you ask other expats you meet, they will be happy to share the good and bad insurance stories with you.  You will find recommendations that way and most expats can give you a good education on where to find the best insurance for the best price.

If you are planning permanent retirement to Mexico, you must consider whether or not you wish to continue with medical insurance from your country of origin.

Many people find that having insurance in both Mexico and the country of origin is very expensive.  Since the Mexico health care can range from free to a couple of hundred dollars monthly, many decide to select Mexico health insurance for their sole major medical needs.  Many of the Mexico health insurance plans include an optional coverage that is an extra charge, but gives you the opportunity to travel to your country of citizenship for very specialized care that may not be available in Mexico.  This optional plan will cover up to $1 million dollars including transportation to your country of origin.

There are waiting periods for pre-existing conditions, just as there would be with any new health insurance policy.  Each health policy differs on some coverage waiting periods, so Mexico Living Now strongly suggests you get a complete list of what those pre-existing conditions are and the waiting period for each.

When you buy health insurance coverage, there are some companies that charge you for monthly auto pay.  Try to find a company that will automatically charge your payment monthly at no extra charge.

Every area of Mexico has emergency numbers for ambulance, fire or police.  One of the things on your “priority” to-do list should be to get a copy of those numbers and keep them in your cell phone address book as well as on your home refrigerator.  We have found that placing them in a small see through sandwich bag on the refrigerator with big visible print indicated “numeros de emergencia” is a good practice.

Another suggestion of Mexico Living Now is to make a list of people to contact in case of emergency and distribute it to your friends and family.  Keep a copy of that on your refrigerator as well for any medical aid that may have to come to your house.  Use large visible print for this list as well, titling it “nombres de familia y amigos para emergencia”

AUTO INSURANCE

If you are retiring in Mexico and decide to move your car to Mexico, one of the first and most important things for you to buy is Mexico Auto Insurance.

Auto Insurance for your car is not valid in Mexico if it is not Mexico Auto Insurance.

You should also know that the Mexican Law demands the arrest of any person involved in an accident where another person has been injured.  This simply gives the police the time to check the validity of your auto insurance and verifies that you have enough coverage for the injured person.  Once those clarifications are determined, you will be released.  If this happens to you, do not panic.  It is the law.   You should carry your auto insurance with you at all times while driving.  Additionally, you should always keep a telephone number handy for a friend who can help or an attorney for interpretation.

There are many different auto insurance companies selling Mexican Auto Insurance, and it is fairly easy to find.  The costs do not differ too much from one company to another.   Simply, it is so inexpensive, that you can get full and total coverage, including maximum levels on collision and medical for about $350US – $400 US annually.

If you are driving into Mexico, you must present the title to your vehicle and the Mexican Auto Insurance after crossing the border to obtain your Mexico sticker. The display of the sticker permits you to drive a foreign car in and throughout all of Mexico.

The sticker is placed on your front windshield so that it is always visible to the police and immigration authorities.
If you do not have a valid sticker for your vehicle, your vehicle will be taken from you and there will be hefty fines for its retrieval.  If and when you retrieve your vehicle from impound, you will be required to drive all the way back to the border to do the paperwork you were initially required to complete during initial entry to Mexico.