For at least how long must a new member stay in the same option?
A missionary can change option when they change country of care or when their responsibilities mean they have to travel; membership is half-yearly; changes can be made each quarter.
We want to make a sister a member on 1 February in option 1. What is our contribution going to be?
Membership is effective from 1 January, because IMS membership is for whole half-years or quarters, namely 1 January, 1 April, 1 July or 1 October. For a request to join made for example on 1 February, the IMS enrols the new member on 1 April.
Is there an age limit for joining the IMS?
No, there is no age limit nor medical questionnaire. From the age of 65, support for hospitalisation costs is however limited to 6 months over the year for the same complaint.
When a beneficiary member is no longer in their area of enrolment, can they be replaced by another new member of their group?
Since enrolment is personal (allocation of a registration number), the contract cannot benefit a new arrival.
A new group joins the IMS: must it necessarily have a manager?
Yes, the section must have the name of the contact in charge of the group. This person will receive explanations and documents to ensure they are an effective intermediary between its members and the section.
What is the role of the membership committee?
A particular case may arise in a congregation or a diocese which may give rise to a review by this committee, for example, when the IMS’ principles cannot be complied with scrupulously or when the articles of the congregation raise questions.
Is there a minimum subscription period for a group?
A community which enrols a group to the IMS makes a 3-year commitment. If for a particular reason, the community requests that this group should be removed before the 3-year period, and it wishes to join again, a 6-month waiting period will apply, during which no benefit will be paid.
The Guide states that membership is collective; what about the women religious already covered by healthcare insurance?
Collective membership is a basic principle of the IMS, as the superior or the bishop must provide social protection to all their members. There are situations where men or women religious or priests are excluded from the rule, such as those already insured by local / national insurance.
Does a principle of retroactive membership exist?
Membership takes effect every half-year (when the Group revises its list) or quarterly (arrival during the year), which enables a Group to plan ahead; membership with retroactive effect is not allowed.
I do not have an IMS membership card or a VITALE health card, is this normal?
Yes, it is normal. The IMS does not issue a card, but will provide a certificate on request to the Section.