Overseas Visitors

An “Overseas visitor” is defined as a person not ordinarily resident in the UK and, accordingly, only those who are not ordinarily resident may be charged for NHS services.

The concept of ordinary residence can be described as living lawfully in the UK for settled purposes, as part of your regular order of life.

A person’s identifiable purpose and whether that purpose has a sufficient degree of continuity to be described as settled are the determining factors, regardless of whether a UK passport is held, the person owns property in the UK or pays UK taxes.

Ordinary residence is essentially a question of fact and the definitive interpretation of ordinary or temporary residence would be for a court to decide in the specific circumstances of an individual case.

As a rule, 6 months is seen as a reasonable period of time for a person to remain lawfully in Scotland before they can be classed as ordinarily resident.

All people who are adjudged to be ordinarily resident in Scotland are not overseas visitors and are only charged for the same services as a UK national ordinarily resident in Scotland. Guidance is set out in the CMO Circular:

The rules surround the registration of Overseas visitor can be confusing and as such if unsure please contact the LMC offices and ask to speak to Mr Ian Mackie who will advise you appropriately.