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Will benefits be lost at 65?

Will switch to UK state pension cover from invalidity benefit, mean French healthcare reimbursements will drop?

I am resident in France and in receipt of invalidity benefit from the UK. I have an E121 with my wife as my dependent. In May, I will be 65 and thus will receive a state pension. At present, I am eligible for 100% healthcare reimbursement instead of the normal 70%. Will I still receive 100% or will it go to 70% on my attaining 65? Also, will the new E121 run back-to-back with the present one or will there be a gap which I would have to cover with a private health insurance for both my wife and I? M.R.

The best thing to do would be to notify your health authority (CPAM) as soon as possible of the impending change and to forward the new form (now called an S1) to them when you have it (although we suggest also making a copy for yourself).

There should be no period in which you need private health insurance instead of being eligible for the French reimbursements system.

Cover at 100% of the standard rates is available, as you say, for most of French healthcare (with exceptions like blue-label medicines, deemed to be of limited effectiveness), for people on invalidity benefits from the UK (its latest name being Employment and Support Allowance). This is the same as for people with French invalidity pensions. When the latter move onto old-age pensions, they have ones called a retraite d’inaptitude au travail, and usually retain the same full cover.

In principle, you are eligible to be treated the same as a French person in this respect. However, CPAMs are allowed to treat each case on its merits. In other words, they may ask you to undertake a health assessment to see if your conditions are in fact such that you require fuller cover than that available to ordinary French retirees.

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