J-1 and J-2 Health Insurance Requirements
The Department of State requires that all exchange visitors on a J visa have health insurance for the principal J-1 and all of the accompanying dependents throughout the duration of the program. As a J-1 scholar at UC Irvine, you and all your accompanying dependents are required to have medical insurance that meets the minimum J-1 requirements. You can obtain this coverage through Garnett Powers, from another insurer or provider in your home country. Please check with your UCI hiring department if health insurance benefits are provided.
For more information, please visit Garnett-Powers website: https://clients.garnett-powers.com/vs/uci/.
Proof of Insurance
1. Enroll in a Garnett-Powers health insurance plan
Please visit the Garnett-Powers website and enroll in the insurance program.
2. Insurance waiver confirmation from Garnett-Powers
If you will provide your own insurance, you wil need to visit Garnett-Powers website and submit a waiver request. To be eligible for a waiver, the insurance evidence you provide must meet the above J-1 requirements. This evidence will be evaluated by Garnett-Powers to detemine if your insurance policy meets J-1 minimum requirements.
You will need to provide evidence of enrollment in a Garnett Powers plan or an approved waiver confirmation email from Garnett-Powers to successfully check-in at the International Center. The International Center will not be able to check you in until you have successfully met the health insurance requirement. Scholars receiving UCI benefits do not need to provide this evidence.
Repatriation and Medical Evacuation Insurance
If your insurance is covered by UCI benefits but does not cover repatriation and medical evacuation requirement (e.g. Junior Specialist, SRA II, Lecturer, Assistant Specialist etc. EXCEPT Post-Docs), It is mandatory to purchase this supplemental insurance for the duration of your J-1 program as stipulated on the 2nd page of your DS-2019, Section 1 (f).
Here are some referrals for repatriation and medical evacuation policies:
1) BETiNS International Health and Travel Insurance
2) A-G Administrators, Inc
It is important to give the insurance a call at 1-800-634-8628 after they receive your payment to obtain your insurance policy number.
Affordable Care Act (ACA) and International Scholars and Students
Program sponsors are required to notify J-1 visa holders that they and their J-2 dependents may be subject to the requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Details regarding the ACA can be found at http://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/rights/index.html, and penalties for lack of coverage can be found at https://www.healthcare.gov/fees-exemptions/fee-for-not-being-covered/.
Who is subject to ACA?
• The answer depends whether an individual is considered a non-resident or resident for tax purposes.
Non-residents for tax purposes are not subject to ACA, whereas residents for tax purposes are subject to ACA.
How do I determine whether or not I am a resident or non-resident for tax purpose?
• An individual’s tax residency status is determined by the IRS (Internal Revenue Service)
• Detailed information on determining tax residency status can also be found here: