NO DEAL ORDONNANCE PROVISIONS: HEALTH CARE FOR S1 HOLDERS
As we expected, the ordonnance covers the situation of those whose health care is covered by an S1. It is good news, and means that if you’re one of them you can rest assured that your health care will continue without a break. The Article covering health care tells us that
1. If you are covered under the S1 scheme and are legally resident in France on Brexit day, you will continue to benefit from health cover for yourself and your dependents for a period of 2 years ‘under the same conditions as a person covered under the French régime’.
2. The period of two years may be reduced if a bilateral health care agreement is concluded with the UK that would continue a reciprocal health care system between the two countries.
3. If at the end of the two year period there is no bilateral agreement between France and the UK, then the means of access to the health care system for S1 holders will be re-examined.
4. What the ordonnance doesn’t tell us is whether cotisations would be due (à la PUMa). And we don’t know whether the new arrangements would mean that social charges would be due on pensions, or who would be responsible for issuing EHICs/CEAMs. Nor does it tell us what the position is of those who would become entitled to an S1 during the 2 year period. We will be raising these points as soon as possible.
5. What the inclusion of this Article tells us though I think is that France is fairly confident of reaching a bilateral agreement with the UK on health care. We also know that the UK is keen to do this too and has made informal approaches to the countries where most Brits live. They are not permitted to begin official bilateral talks until Brexit has happened.
6. I suspect a lot of people are now breathing a large sigh of relief.