International Student health insurance for M1 visa holders
Find the best insurance plan for your needs.
Need for M1 visa health insurance
If you want to engage in vocational training or non-academic pursuits in an US institution you will need to be issued a M-1 visa. Students issued the M1 visa for vocational training in US colleges. While health insurance is not mandatory as it is for the J1 visa, it is still extremely important given the expensive healthcare costs within the United States. The health insurance plans offered to students within the university is a good option, however it can be expensive for international students on the M1 visa. An alternative option is to purchase affordable plans that are offered on our website which are listed in this page.
International students often purchase their health insurance in the University. While this is most popular and convenient, it is often expensive. The plans offered on our website are cheaper and provide comparable coverage. You can compare the plans that we offer by getting quotes which also shows the coverage details. We can facilitate getting the insurance waiver form completed if required by your college.
These plans are also available for international students with M1 Visa taking part in vocational or technical training.
Student Secure Select, Patriot Exchange and Student Health Advantage Platinum do not provide coverage for wellness/routine and preventive care services.
Spouse and Childrens of F1 and J1 visa holders are issued the F2 and J2 visas respectively. While J1 visa holders have insurance requirements mandated by the US consulate, given the high health care costs in the US, it is prudent for F2 and J2 visa holders to also have proper insurance coverage.
International students on the F1 visa are allowed to enroll for optional practical training(OPT). This allows students to work off campus, or work without being enrolled for coursework in the university. Since students in this OPT visa status are not enrolled in coursework, they will be ineligible for some student insurance plans.
Students on M1 visa may have their dependants also travelling with them. Some university plans may not offer coverage for spouse or children of M1 visa holders. Here we offer insurance plans which you can compare and select the best plan that satisfy your needs.
Receive academic credit for the program of study or the program of study is required for your degree; or
Are enrolled in an online degree program and you are required to travel to the United States for a short course of study which is more than 18 hours a week.
Three-year Maximum - The M-1 visa is limited to a maximum of three years presence in the U.S. for study.
No Extension beyond 3 years - An M-1 visa cannot be extended beyond three years.
Certificate not Completed - If the student is not able to complete the full degree within the maximum period allowed by the M-1 visa, as extensions and changes of status from the U.S. are not allowed, she/he would be required to return to her/his home country to apply for the appropriate visa to re-enter the U.S. to continue her/his studies to complete the degree.
Change of Status not Allowed - Those on an M-1 visa cannot apply to change their visa status to another status such as F-1 or another visa type from within the U.S.
Optional Practical Training (OPT) - M-1 has a six month maximum limitation on optional practical training.
OPT may only be used following the completion of a career/professional training or certificate program.
A M-1 may not utilize OPT prior to certificate/program completion.
Employment Eligibility - M-1 visa holders are not eligible for employment in the U.S., even on campus.
Curricular Practical Training - M-1 visa holders are not eligible for curricular practical training
Applying for the M1 Visa
The first step is to obtain from the school or vocational institution the Form I-20M-N entitled Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant (M1) student status. Schools that have received U.S. Government approval to enroll foreign students have the authority to issue these forms.
An M1 visa cannot be processed without the Form I-20M-N. Item 11 at the bottom of page one of the Form I-20M-N must be completed and signed by the applicant and submitted together with the following:
DOS Form DS-160, Nonimmigrant Visa Application.
A copy of your passport which is valid for at least six months beyond the period of stay in the U.S. and with at least one blank page.
Two identical color photographs showing full face without head covering against a light background. You may wear a headdress if required by a religious order of which you are a member.
Evidence demonstrating sufficient funds to cover all expenses including the tuition fee and living expenses. Such evidence may include detailed bank statements of accounts showing that adequate funds are available for transfer, evidence of scholarships and/or combination of finances which will meet the estimated total expenses, including tuition, of your proposed stay in the U.S.
Evidence demonstrating that you have a residence abroad to which you intend to return at the end of your stay in the U.S. This is generally established by evidence of family, professional, property, employment or other ties and commitments to some country other than the U.S. sufficient to cause the applicant to return there at the conclusion of your stay
Your academic qualifications - such evidence may include complete transcripts of grades and test records for the last four years of school and evidence of TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) scores.
The M-1 Vocational Student visa differs from the F-1 Academic Student in that the M-1 student:
Cannot change their educational objectives
Can only be authorized to reduce course load for a medical reason; no more than 5 months maximum allowed
Cannot take online courses or distance learning courses unless they are required to be physically present for class (often called a "blended course")
Can only attend school with extensions for a maximum of 3 years
Can transfer schools only in the first 6 months. Permission must be granted permission from the Department of Homeland Security (using the form I-539) prior to the transfer (the transfer process is quite lengthy and is not advisable)
Cannot accept employment, except practical training; Practical Training is a max of 6 months
Cannot change status to "H" status if basis of "H" was training or education received as M-1 student; nor can a student's request to change nonimmigrant status be granted to "M" if student is doing it to ultimately qualify for an "H"
A student in "M" status also cannot change to "F" status (None of these regulations apply to M2's.)
Can travel to Canada and/or Mexico on an expired visa and return, but not to any of the adjacent islands