Art. 53 number 7 from Human Mobility Law, states it is an “Obligation for foreign people to have health insurance whether it’s public or private, for as long as they stay in Ecuador…
Art. 30 from Human Mobility Law establishes that “to maintain a temporary or permanent stay in Ecuador, foreigners must have public or private health insurance coverage, valid for the time they would stay in Ecuador. “This insurance will be presented before the human mobility authority within thirty (30) days after the visa is granted. Once the foreign person submits this requirement, the Authority that issued the visa will send the corresponding cedula order to the Civil Registry Authority.”
The Fifth Transitory Regulation of the Human Mobility Law establishes that “Foreigners who were on a permanent resident visa at the time this Regulation came into force, will have 90-days term to submit their health insurance before the human mobility authority.”
For greater clarity, it must be specified that the Human Mobility Law was approved in February 2017; and, the Human Mobility Law Regulation came into force on August 10, 2017; and according to Art. 30 of the Regulation, every person who receives a temporary residence visa has 30 days to present their health insurance before the Mobility office; and, according to the fifth transitory of said regulation, foreigners who already had a permanent residence visa on the previous law, had to present their health insurance until November 8, 2017 before the Migration offices.
Now, the question is: What about foreigners who have received a temporary residence visa and have not obtained their health insurance within 30 days after receiving the visa; and, what about foreigners who, already had a permanent residence visa before the new law and regulation were passed:
Here is the answer:
- Foreigners who have received a temporary residence visa and have not obtained their insurance within 30 days: Won’t be able to obtain their cedula order and therefore, by not having their cedula order, they won’t be able to obtain their cedula.
- Foreigners who had a permanent visa before the approval of the new law and regulation and didn’t obtain their insurance until November 8, 2017: In this case the regulation is not clear, since it only says “… they will have a 90-day term to submit their health insurance before the human mobility authority “; But in spite of not specifying otherwise in the regulation and according to how things have been going, in the event, the foreigner needs to carry on any procedure regarding the loss of the identity card, visa transfer, CD renewal, visa certification, they won’t be able to perform any of these procedures if they don’t have health insurance, which to date, the requirements established for the above-mentioned procedures is only the Health Insurance, and in some cases, they would accept the certificate issued by the insurance company, in other cases, they would accept the invoice for the insurance payment, and they would also accept the insurance contract, which should show the insurance coverage, begins before and stops after the requested process.
For temporary visas which cannot obtain the cedula due to negligence, for not having obtained the health insurance within the 30 days after the issuance of the visa, they must restart the visa process with the same requirements, meaning, they should reapply for the visa.
For permanent visas on the previous law, in practice, it seems they haven’t had any problem since it is justified with the health insurance obtained before the application of the service, and there has not been an exhaustive verification on whether the health insurance proof was delivered or not until November 8, 2018 or if the insurance was acquired as of November 9, 2018; but in the event there is a refusal by the Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility Ministry to accept the application for a visa transfer, ID order, CD renewal, based on the lack of obtaining insurance according to the Regulation, the foreigner should apply for a temporary residence visa and continue with the normal procedure to obtain their cedula and after 2 years apply for the permanent visa.
Author: Lina Ulloa Delgado