Monday, February 6, 2023

What are the requirements for H-2A workers to purchase health insurance?

North Carolina, RaleighIn the United States, federal law ensures that H-2A migrant agricultural workers can obtain affordable health insurance.

This is a free or very low-cost option that can save thousands of dollars in the event an H-2A worker suffers a health issue in the country.

as mentioned Latin Link NC Melissa Castillo, an expert at the nonprofit organization NC Field for Accessing the Health Insurance Market under the Affordable Health Care Act (ACA), cautions H-2A workers should only meet certain requirements.

First requirement for getting health insurance for H-2A workers: Social Security Number

“The first and foremost requirement is that they obtain a Social Security number,” the expert said.

As Castillo explained, H-2A workers are able to obtain their Social Security numbers as soon as they enter the United States. For this, the employer will have to give his cooperation. This includes providing employees with the appropriate form so that they can fill it out and sign it.

Once a Social Security number is obtained, it will be useful for H-2A workers for various benefits in addition to health insurance. For example, having access to an ID or driving license.

For this reason, it is important that employees keep their Social Security card. Under no circumstances can employers retain that credential. The only exception is if the worker explicitly requests it to be kept in a safe place.

Second requirement: 60 day period

Second, there is a 60-day deadline for H-2A workers to apply for health insurance.

This term takes into account the time the worker completes his or her registration to enter the country, also known as the I-94 form. This usually occurs on the day of entry into the United States.

Although the Health Marketplace enrollment period is from November 1 to January 15, this period does not apply to H-2A employees. For this reason, they can buy insurance at any time of the year, as long as 60 days have passed since they entered the country. That right is known as the Special Enrollment Period.

“The problem with many H-2A workers is that they often enter the country through Florida and stay there longer than 60 days. So when they arrive in other states like North Carolina, if they haven’t yet If you haven’t started the process, it’s already too late,” Castillo warned.

To avoid missing out on this opportunity, experts recommend that H-2A workers begin applying for their health insurance as soon as they enter the country.

“What they can do is call us from wherever they come. For example, from Florida. So we started the application at that time. They can get a plan that covers them in Florida and then North Carolina, or outright one that covers them nationwide, depending on how much they need to move.

To contact NC Field for free assistance in Spanish for health insurance for H-2A workers, call 1-855-733-3711 or 252-933-2533.

Third Requirement: Income Level

H-2A workers can receive tax credits for the health insurance marketplace based on their income level.

Whether they will be eligible depends on their status in relation to the federal poverty level. It is a measure of income released each year by the Department of Health and Human Services.

There is no exact salary for H-2A workers to receive health insurance, as it depends on several factors. age and family composition, among other things.

As a general rule, people whose income is between 100% and 400% of the federal poverty level are eligible.

The figures in the table correspond to 100% of the federal poverty level based on the number of members in each household.

Nation World News Desk
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