Medical insurance requirements for foreign worker
You need to buy a medical insurance plan for each foreign worker you employ.
You also need to submit the insurance details online before the Work Permit can be issued.
What it should cover?
As an employer, you must buy and maintain medical insurance coverage of at least $15,000 per year for each Work Permit holder.
The insurance should cover inpatient care and day surgery, including hospital bills for conditions that may not be work related.
You can have a co-pay arrangement with the Work Permit holder only if all of the following are met:
- The medical treatment is not for work-related inpatient expenses.
- The co-pay amount is reasonable and does not exceed 10% of the worker’s monthly salary.
- The duration co-payment does not exceed 6 months.
- The co-payment option is explicitly in the employment contract or collective agreement and has the worker’s full consent.
How is medical insurance for foreign workers different from the other insurance requirements?
The medical insurance requirement provides cover for a foreign worker’s medical expenses, including hospital bills arising from treatment for causes that may not be work-related.
It serves a different purpose from the other employer-paid insurance requirements, such as:
- Work injury compensation insurance. This covers compensation, including medical expenses, for work-related injuries only. It applies to both local and foreign workers.
- Personal accident insurance for foreign domestic workers (FDWs). This insures against accidental death and permanent disablement, not medical expenses.
If a foreign worker’s medical expenses exceed the insurance limit, can the worker pay part of it?
Yes, you can get your foreign worker to bear part of the cost of medical treatment that exceeds the minimum medical insurance requirement. However, you cannot get them to bear the entire cost.
For your worker to pay part of the cost, you will need to have a co-payment arrangement. For the co-payments, you must ensure that:
- The part of the medical costs to be paid by the foreign worker only covers costs in excess of the minimum medical insurance requirement, which is $15,000.
- The amount paid by the foreign worker should not exceed 10% of the worker’s monthly salary.
- The arrangement is made with the foreign worker’s agreement and is stated explicitly in the worker’s existing employment contract or collective agreement.
If the arrangement takes the form of a salary deduction, you should also write in to MOM to seek permission from the Commissioner of Labour before making the deduction.
Submit insurance details
You need to submit medical insurance details online before you request to issue or renew a Work Permit, and when the details change.
To update the information, log in to WP Online.
You need to keep the following information up to date:
- Name of Insurer
- Insurance policy number
- Insurance policy commencement date
- Insurance policy expiry date