My girlfriend wanted to follow me to Canada, Québec for 4 months (from september to december), where I'm staying as an exchange student.

She originally planned to subscribe to distance courses at her university for one year, so she would still be covered by social welfare as she would still be a student. In the end, for some reasons, she couldn't.

She's now in Canada without any social welfare (well, she will be 4 days from now) and I'm very worried . The consequence is that she will no longer have any status in France, so I believe that put her in an illegal situation in Canada. Is there any solution?

e.g. I'm registered at the RAMQ due to agreement between France and Québec. Is there any way she could benefit from that?

I'll add that she's a French citizen and got a tourism visa.

1 Answer 1


The coverage you are receiving from La Régie de l'assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) is specific to you, as a student, in this instance from France, with which Québec has concluded a social security agreement providing for student coverage. RAMQ explicitly notes that those who are ineligible for the Health Insurance Plan include tourists (among others).

While Canada welcomes visitors, it does not offer health insurance or benefits to them, and social benefits in another country do not travel with an individual.

Health care is expensive in Canada and, should your friend need to access it, she will be expected to pay for it. As is noted in the information provided to those who apply for a tourism visa:

Canada does not pay for hospital or medical services for visitors. You should get health insurance to cover any medical costs before you come to Canada.

There is nothing illegal about her visit with you in Canada. As you point out, she's a French citizen who received a Canadian tourist visa. As long as she doesn't violate any of her visa conditions (e.g., doesn't work, doesn't overstay), she'll be fine.

Bon chance.

  • Thanks a lot. Now my problem is: how can she get an health insurance? Should I open another question for that?
    – user10418
    Sep 26, 2016 at 21:39
  • 3
    She would need to obtain a travel insurance plan. What they cover and how much they cost vary. She really should take care of it before entering Canada, as it would be much easier. No need for another question; just google travel insurance, and start comparing.
    – Giorgio
    Sep 26, 2016 at 21:45
  • France also has a "feuille de soin", version étrangère, that your girlfriend can use if she needs medical care. It's in French, of course, but since you're in Quebec any doctor should be able to fill it out. So you pay the doctor, he fills out the form, and then your girlfriend sends it back to the "Sécu" in France and that system will, in theory, reimburse her for whatever she would have had to pay for the equivalent service in France.
    – ssimm
    Jan 2, 2017 at 17:58

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