Health care coverage is essential to have as it helps many individuals afford the medical treatment/medications they need. There are a number of different ways for an immigrant who is living in the U.S. to obtain health care coverage. Depending on their status, they can either receive it through their employer, apply for it through the Health Insurance Marketplace, or obtain coverage from the government. Those who apply for government assistance will need to meet additional criteria in order to receive these benefits.


Applying for Coverage Through an Employer-Sponsored Plan


If an immigrant is living in Texas and has been authorized to work in the U.S., he/she can discuss with their employer whether they qualify to receive health care coverage. Typically, when an employer provides health insurance to their employees, they withhold a portion of their wages to cover the monthly premium costs.


Obtaining Health Care Coverage Through the Health Insurance Marketplace


Certain immigrants are eligible to purchase coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace.  Anyone who is considered a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national, or a lawfully present immigrant is eligible for coverage through the Marketplace. Unfortunately, undocumented immigrants are not eligible to purchase Marketplace health coverage. Immigrants who hold one of the following immigrant statuses are eligible to buy coverage through the Marketplace:

  • Green Card holder
  • Asylee
  • Refugee
  • Battered spouse, child, and parent
  • Granted withholding of deportation or withholding of removal
  • Deferred action status (DACA)
  • Non-immigrant status, including worker visas such as H1, H-2A, H-2B) and student visas


Applying for Government Assistance


An immigrant who is considered a “qualified non-citizen” may be eligible to receive coverage through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Each state has its own income limits and residency rules that must be met in order for an immigrant to be eligible to receive health care coverage.


Examples of “Qualified Non-Citizens”

  • Lawful permanent residents, or Green Card holders
  • Asylees
  • Refugees
  • Cuban/Haitian entrants
  • Battered non-citizens, spouses, children, or parents
  • Granted withholding of deportation


Contact the Law Office of J. Joseph Cohen Before Applying for Government Assistance


Now, before an individual applies for government assistance, they should consult with a Texas immigration lawyer to be sure it won’t have an impact on their ability to apply for citizenship should they decide to do so in the future. Should an individual have any other questions pertaining to their rights as an immigrant in the U.S. or they have a question regarding another type of matter, they can always contact the Law Office of J. Joseph Cohen for assistance.

The Texas immigration lawyers at the Law Office of J. Joseph Cohen are skilled in immigration law and are committed to providing their clients with the best legal advice and guidance possible.


You can reach the Law Office of J. Joseph Cohen at:


310 South St. Mary’s Street, Suite 2100

San Antonio, Texas 78205

Phone: 210-503-2800


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