Obtaining a Portugese EHIC card?

Jungle Jim

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For those of you following some of my threads you may be aware that I am trying to help a Brit ex~pat friend who has Portugese residency through the Brexit minefield.

I have seen a post recently from someone who has obtained a Portugese EHIC card but still has access to NHS services when back in the UK but I cannot find the post. Can anyone point us in the right direction on how to apply for her?
 

crashtack

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If she has Portuguese residency, then she will have to pay for the NHS when back in the UK. The rules are very simple, you can have one or the other, but not both.

I live in Portugal but used my UK EHIC when I broke my wrist. Total cost was €18.70. Not even worth bothering to try to claim it back. Where does she live? The hospital in Cascais is absolutely fantastic, Faro less so.
 

Graham376

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I have dual residency which is allowed under UK and Portuguese law. I'm a UK householder and tax payer/resident with free UK healthcare, with a UK EHIC and also have permanent Portuguese residency with a (so far unused) Portuguese EHIC as a backup in case the UK drops out of the system. I'm already registered at a Centro de Saude so have a health number which may or may not be necessary first - I don't know. Application for EHIC can be made at Social Security or in some areas, Loja do Cidadao.
 

crashtack

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Are you sure? I'm in the UK at the moment, for an Epidural and a Sciatic Nerve root block and one of the first questions that I was asked was if I had lived outside the UK in the last 12 months. Luckily, I still have a UK address and just go on VERY long "holidays ". It has Pension implications too, as its frozen once you leave the UK, especially if you are ex-Forces.
 

nortada

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Are you sure? I'm in the UK at the moment, for an Epidural and a Sciatic Nerve root block and one of the first questions that I was asked was if I had lived outside the UK in the last 12 months. Luckily, I still have a UK address and just go on VERY long "holidays ". It has Pension implications too, as its frozen once you leave the UK, especially if you are ex-Forces.

From experience, armed forces pensions are not frozen.
 

macd

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If she has Portuguese residency, then she will have to pay for the NHS when back in the UK. The rules are very simple, you can have one or the other, but not both.

These things are rarely "very simple". Like so many such matters, what you write is largely true but not universally so. If a subject is formally resident anywhere in the EEA but has a history of social security contributions in the UK, they may be eligible for Form S1 healthcare. (UK pensioners, some ex-pat workers, students and some other groups are eligible.) S1 entitles you to state healthcare in your new country, plus full NHS eligibility in the UK. It also grants you a UK-issued EHIC. I know all this 'cos I've got it.
 

nortada

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Sadly, they are now.

I assume you are in receipt of an MOD Pension?

I have been in receipt of an armed forces pension for the last 21 years and can reassure you that unlike the state pension in some some countries (Canada, Australia etc. but not within the EU), wherever you live a MOD pension enjoys an annual increase base on the cost of living in the UK.

Other Government pensioners (Police etc.) also get the annual increase.
 
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Graham376

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Are you sure? I'm in the UK at the moment, for an Epidural and a Sciatic Nerve root block and one of the first questions that I was asked was if I had lived outside the UK in the last 12 months. Luckily, I still have a UK address and just go on VERY long "holidays ". It has Pension implications too, as its frozen once you leave the UK, especially if you are ex-Forces.

As macd says, it all depends on personal circumstances. As I said before, I am a UK pensioner with a UK property, paying UK taxes just like any other householder, which gives me/us the usual rights to UK health care and a GP. We also spend extended holidays in Portugal and have a property there as well as the boat but have not emigrated from UK, so no S1. Because sometimes we are in Portugal for >6 months, I'm entitled to residence there (my wife is a citizen) which gives me free access to their health service and a right to have an EHIC.

P.S. There is a double taxation agreement between Portugal and UK so UK taxes our pensions and we would only pay tax on any income generated in Portugal such as bank interest and of course we pay property taxes. It's necessary to have a Fiscal number (tax ref.) in Portugal to own a car or enter into a phone or property rental contract.

Under past and present rules, if in a State for extended period (IIRC 6 months) one has to register there but this doesn't automatically cancel your rights in home country, unless selling up, moving out and paying taxes elsewhere.
 
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maxi77

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If she has Portuguese residency, then she will have to pay for the NHS when back in the UK. The rules are very simple, you can have one or the other, but not both.

I live in Portugal but used my UK EHIC when I broke my wrist. Total cost was €18.70. Not even worth bothering to try to claim it back. Where does she live? The hospital in Cascais is absolutely fantastic, Faro less so.

when we registered for our Portuguese social security number with the S1 form it appears it is a mechanism for the, in this case, Portuguese to claim back any treatment costs from the UK. The covering letter suggested keeping copy of the S1 to prove entitlement to UK healthcare.
 

macd

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when we registered for our Portuguese social security number with the S1 form it appears it is a mechanism for the, in this case, Portuguese to claim back any treatment costs from the UK. The covering letter suggested keeping copy of the S1 to prove entitlement to UK healthcare.

Yes, that's basically what S1 provides: underwriting of health service costs by home country. ('Home' being the country where you've made social security contributions: nothing to do with nationality.) Although most EU countries offer it, the entitlement to home country healthcare isn't universal amongst the EU28; the UK only began offering it in 2014, so there may be some forumites who assume it still doesn't.
 
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