Home > Medical schemes > General info Updated 09 February 2016 Medical scheme dependants: who qualifies? If you're a member of a medical scheme, who exactly can you register as a dependant? 0 iStock Related 7 things to know about your scheme 21 ways to cut your medical costs Like us on Facebook » Subscribe to the newsletter » Ask CyberDoc » Quiz How long will you live? » Medical history Bacteria gallery In terms of the Medical Schemes Act, no medical scheme may refuse to admit persons who are dependent on the member. Among those who qualify as dependants are the following:the member's spouse or life partnerchildren under the age of 21children older than age 21 dependent upon the member due to a mental or physical disabilitychildren still financially dependent on the member (such as a full-time student)immediate family in respect of whom the member is legally liable for family care and supportsuch other persons who are recognised by the scheme as dependantsDepending on your scheme, adult members will usually pay substantially more than child dependants. Many schemes will only charge for the first two or three child dependants – after that membership is free in some instances. If you have more than three children, it will pay you to shop around.Read more: 10 tips on choosing a medical schemeEx-spouses can usually be registered as members on your scheme – provided legal provision has been made for this in the divorce court.Immediate family is classified as the mother or father of the member. The scheme concerned may require proof of such financial dependency and appropriate additional contributions in respect of such extended cover must be expected.You may not register family members over 21 who are not financially dependent on you. Schemes can charge an adult dependant the rate usually paid by a principal member.A minor can become a principal member of a medical scheme with the assistance of his parents or guardian, provided that the relevant contributions are paid.If a member dies, his registered dependants will still be covered, provided contributions are paid. One of the dependants, usually the remaining spouse or the eldest child, will become the new principal member.(Source: Council for Medical Schemes)Read more: 20 claims schemes will not pay Information from the Council for Medical Schemes Susan Erasmus is a freelance writer for Health24. NEXT ON HEALTH24X The value of digital technology in addressing quality care 2017-05-17 04:48 More: Medical schemesGeneral info advertisement Read Health24’s Comments Policy Comment on this story 0 comments Comments have been closed for this article. Logout Comment 0 characters remaining Share on Facebook Loading comments... Other news Lifestyle This is why you have to pee so often in the morning Lifestyle SEE: The science of smartphone addiction Medical Can gene therapy be used to cure Aids? Lifestyle 2 general eyelash health issues and how to treat them News QUIZ: Which famous people said these outrageous things about health? Lifestyle From doing drugs in Khayelitsha to a mobile counselling practice From our sponsors Managing diabetes in the workplace Back-to-school with diabetes Discover treatments that can help reduce acne What can I do to reduce or remove acne marks? Live healthier Fact or myth? » Clearing up the confusion around coconut oil Coconut – the 'fruit of life' Can coconut oil really help you lose weight? Experts dish on the high-cal weight-loss tactic. Sobering perks! » 5 tips to avoiding a hangover Can you really be allergic to alcohol? Is giving up booze for a month actually worth it? Many people commit to "Dry January" – but does it do your body any good?