Center for Health & Wellness
Health Insurance Requirement
All students enrolled at least 75% of full-time are required by law to have health insurance.
Matriculated undergraduates enrolled for fewer than 9 credits and matriculated graduates enrolled for fewer than 6 credits who desire health insurance must submit a written request for coverage with payment to the Office of Student Accounts, located on the 4th floor of 216 Tremont St.
Health insurance charges are automatically removed when undergraduate and graduate students drop to fewer than 9 or 6 credits, respectively, within the first 30 days of the 1st semester of coverage. These students must also submit a written request for coverage with payment.
Coverage, effective August 15 through August 14 of the following year, is provided under a blanket policy issued to Emerson College. Coverage is effective January 1 - August 14 for newly enrolled spring semester students.
The policy is underwritten by Aetna Insurance Company and administered by The Aetna Student Health group. For complete details on the policy, please visit Aetna Student Health. The College offers an Undergraduate and Graduate student plan.
Waiving Health Insurance
Undergraduate and graduate students may waive the Health Insurance Fee by submitting written proof of comparable coverage by the designated deadline. An insurance waiver must be completed at the start of each academic year for continued exemption.
- Health Insurance Waiver: Online Form »
- Check your account online to see if your insurance has been waived.
Contact the Office of Student Accounts at 617-824-8655 if you have trouble accessing the waiver.
The option to waive health insurance will be void after the first 10 days of classes of the semester you are charged for health insurance. The last day to waive insurance is September 15th during the Fall semester. For students enrolling for the first time in Spring, the last day is February 1st. Students who use their Emerson-provided health insurance at any point are not eligible to waive afterward.
The following are guidelines you should review before submitting a health insurance waiver:
- U.S. students with comparable coverage under another major medical insurance plan may submit a waiver.
- Veterans’ benefits that provide access to Veterans’ Administration healthcare facilities, TRICARE, and the U.S. Family Health Plan, a military coverage, are all acceptable to submit a waiver.
- Students who have out of area HMOs (for example Kaiser Permanente, Empire of NY, and others) may not have comparable coverage as these types of plans only provide coverage for emergency care or when provided by a network of clinicians not available in the Emerson campus area.
- Health and substance abuse must be covered as any other illness or injury. Injuries or illnesses that occur as a result of alcohol, illegal drugs, or self-harm must be covered as any other illness or injury.
A student is allowed to waive the insurance if they are enrolled in a subsidized health plan through the Health Connector or MassHealth, excluding MassHealth Limited, the Health Safety Net, or the Children's Medical Security Plan. The Programs Considered comparable are:
- Network Health Extend (formerly Medical Security Program)
- International students are required to have a U.S.-based health insurance. Foreign carriers with U.S.-based satellites are still considered foreign insurance and do not qualify for the health insurance waiver. International students who believe they have a U.S.-based health insurance may submit a paper waiver form with a copy of their insurance card at the Office of Student Accounts, located on the 4th floor of 216 Tremont St. A review of your waiver and insurance coverage will be completed before your waiver is approved/denied.
Full information can be found at the Massachusetts Student Health Insurance website if you have additional concerns about Massachusetts requirements.
Loss of Coverage Regulations
Because Massachusetts state law requires any student participating in at least 75% of the full-time curriculum to have continuous medical insurance, Emerson is responsible for ensuring its students have continuous medical coverage.
If a student waives insurance at the beginning of an academic year, then loses coverage, he or she must notify Student Accounts via email to purchase health insurance through Emerson. Prorated plans are available.
Premium Refund Policy
If you withdraw from school within the first 31 days of a coverage period, you will not be covered under the Policy and the full premium will be refunded, less any claims paid. (This refund policy will not apply if you withdraw due to a covered Accident or Sickness.)
After 31 days, you will be covered for the full period that you have paid the premium for, and no refund will be allowed.
Exception: A Covered Person entering the armed forces of any country will not be covered under the Policy as of the date of such entry. In this case, a pro-rata refund of premium will be made for any such person upon written request received by Aetna Student Health within 90 days of withdrawal from school.
Massachusetts regulation does not consider insurance carriers outside of the United States or coverage by foreign national health service programs comparable to a qualifying student health insurance program.
International students may choose to waive the Emerson College health insurance plan if they have alternate health insurance with a U.S.-based carrier that meets Commonwealth of Massachusetts SHP standards (Please read waiver requirements listed above). If you are already covered by a U.S.-based insurance carrier and you have ascertained that your coverage is comparable, you have the right to waive the required student insurance by the end of the first 10 days of classes for the semester you are enrolled in. Fulbright students enrolled in a health insurance plan through the U.S. Department of State should note the plan’s limitations before considering whether to waive the Emerson College health insurance plan.
Please review insurance plans carefully before purchasing a plan and waiving the school sponsored plan.
Massachusetts Health Care Reform Law
The new Health Care Reform Law requires all Massachusetts residents (18 and older) to be enrolled in an insurance program. The Massachusetts Health & Human Services website provides clarification of the requirements as they apply to Emerson College students.