Disabled with fixed income moving to Peru. Advices needed.


I didn't see my situation mentioned anywhere, so I figured I'd ask about some specifics...

I am a fifty-five year-old disabled but mobile woman ('crippled' is how I describe it) with a small (about $1,000 USD) monthly income. I would love to live in a rural area rather than a city, altho I can't live too far away from a city because I do need access to doctors. (Maybe 25-100 miles?) I can't walk very far and would need a car (in theory), but sharing one would not be out of the question. And it could be a beater =}

I would love a very small house or a two bedroom apartment. I can climb stairs. I don't need much in the way of amenities: Internet (high-speed, if at all possible) would be important. (Could I get Netflix there or is that a totally stupid question?) Some kind of cell phone. Good bathroom facilities. I suppose a furnished apartment would be best, but I don't need anything fancy.

I don't speak much Spanish but would be happy to learn. I love talking to people so a sleepy 'suburb' or town where I could get to know my neighbors sounds lovely. I do have some marketable skills; freelance writing mainly, and I'm open to bartering/trading.

Decent healthcare (even if it's 50-100 miles away) is pretty important. I'm not sure how insurance works there. Could I keep (and would doctors/hospitals accept) US Medicare and/or Medicaid? If not, how expensive would health insurance be for someone with pre-existing conditions? And how good is the health care? I need occasional surgeries and doctors who know their way around multiple conditions. And I also need multiple medications, altho that's pretty static; I'm on a regimen that's not likely to change much.

Most countries don't want me; cripples are not welcomed with open arms =\ But I do have an income, I'm thinking that might help.

Any advice or information would be welcome =}


Hello Kelly and welcome to :cheers:

While waiting for members who have made the move to tip in, I invite you to check out articles from our Living in Peru guide.

You may also browse the Peru Forum to read from experiences shared by members.

Wish you all the best in your expatriation project :top:


Thx =}

Hi there Kelly,

My name is Gilbert and we're in the same boat. I have MD (very light case of it) and my wife has RA (recently diagnosed so still very treatable). I am not yet receiving disability but will start the application process soon. Maybe you can give me some insight on that ;-). In any event, my wife and I want to move to Trujillo in the next year or two. Maybe we can keep in touch and I can tell you what I've learned along the way and you can share your experience with us. We live in Miami and there's a Peruvian consulate here. We are planning on going there this week so as to find out as much as we can about living in Peru while receiving a disability check from the U.S. Anyway, I wish you the best!

Hi Gilbert,

Thank you so much for responding!

I'm sorry to hear about you and your wife's diagnoses, however. Both MS and RA are difficult to live with. I know that great strides have been made with RA and I'm glad to hear that your wife is getting treatment. Without aggressive treatment (meaning medication) at the early stages, it can get much worse very quickly. I hope that similar strides have been made in the treatment of MS.

Re getting SSDI; it's not easy but it is doable. I was lucky (ha); given that I have so many different disabilities I had a lot of specialists who could vouch for me. The first time I tried it on my own, however, I didn't get it. I then hired a lawyer (who takes 40% of your retroactive check using whatever the judge comes up with for that date) the second time around and was approved.

There's virtually no way to know how to do it yourself at the beginning, however. There's a specific form that your doctor needs to fill out and the questions ask how long you're able to stand, walk and sit, among other things. If I recall correctly, there are questions about how long you can work at a stretch, maybe how much pain you're in, how many days you are unable to do anything...things like that.)

A lawyer will tell you exactly how it must be filled out, mainly the doctor can't just check the worst box throughout because that will look 'suspicious'. I had to give my specialists cheat sheets b/c they couldn't know that I could only walk so far or sit or stand for only, say, 5, minutes. Any paperwork you have, for example, test results, imaging, blood tests, etc., etc. need to be included. As does your work history before and after disability. It's better if you've already had to stop working ('better' being a very relative term, of course.)  In my case my self-employed tax returns showed a steep decline.

If I remember correctly, the judge put most stock in my back surgeon's and my rheumatologist's paperwork. In your case, RA and MS are both look very...well, good...on paper, although it's really that they look and are "bad". Also the longer you've been sick, the 'better', All of my paperwork is in storage so I can't give you the form name and number but maybe you can root around online and find something that lists the forms that are needed. If they're the same or similar to mine, I'd be happy to help with the details. (A person becomes quite well versed with the process after awhile, oy.) Or you might just want to hire a lawyer for your first time out. S/he will tell you pretty quickly what your chances are. Depending on what details you want to share, I could give you an estimate, too, but that's entirely up to you =}

I haven't received any other responses to my thread and I'd definitely like to keep in touch! My email address is xxx or you can text me at...oops, this is an open forum, if you don't mind emailing I can give you that #. Can you tell me a little about what you've found out so far? Unfortunately this screen won't let me refer to your post but I'd very much like to hear about the town/city you mention as well as any other details you've discovered. I do like this site; it's very welcoming. Although there isn't much info for folks like us =}

Take care,


Moderated by Bhavna last year
Reason : Please exchange contact details via private messaging.
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Kelly my advice to you would be:

1. Subscribe to more expat forums; use Google or other search engines.
2. Medicare/Medicaid does NOT cover a person living outside the US.
3. YOU NEED TO START LEARNING SPANISH; take some classes where you are, buy some course, study online with Duo Lingo, etc.  You need to have some way to communicate/interact with Latinos where less than 7% speak English.
4. You will have to live outside the Lima area where average rents are $600 or more; you can't afford this on your SSD check.  Food is very cheap here; but medical care is expensive using professionals that speak English.  Medical insurance can cost over $600 @ month; again probably not in your budget.  When you can communicate in Spanish, you can go to the local health care providers/hospitals & save a lot of $.

Hope this helps.
Philip C. Brown

Hi KKYRIK i am new on here also and in kind of the same boat living on ssi and thinking of relocating to peru so if you have learned anymore or already made the splash I would love to hear from you my whole reason of joining the forum is to be able to talk to others who are in similar situations

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