coronavirus / health insurance

What to do if you lose your health iinsurance?

Too Many Americans are losing their health insurance along with their jobs. One of the many perils of our peculiar method of providing most health insurance (note that insurance is different from health care). Virtually all industrialized nations provide some form of health care to their citizens. The US stands alone.

Medicaid may be your best bet… if you can qualify. Every state is different. For your kids, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is an option. You can apply for Medicaid at any time. To find out if you are eligible and to apply, go to https://www.healthcare.gov/
Or go directly to your state’s Medicaid website.

Affordable Care Act If you lose your health insurance you may be able to sign up right away for ACA coverage without waiting for the annual enrollment period. You need to sign up within 60 days of losing your coverage so don’t delay. In most states you can use the Healthcare.gov website https://www.healthcare.gov/ to enroll. While the premiums may seem high you may be eligible for a federal subsidy. Deductibles may be high as well.

COBRA allows you to stay on your employer’s health plan for up to 18 months by paying the premiums yourself. Don’t delay as you have 60 days to sign up after losing your job. Expect the premiums to be much higher than the share you were paying while your employer subsided your coverage.

A Family Member’s Plan You may be able to get coverage under your spouse’s health insurance. But jump on this quickly as you have only 30 days to sign up. Call the employer to get the details. If you are under 26 you can be added to a parent’s health plan.

Short-term Plans If none of the above options works for you then consider private health insurers’ short term plans. You will need to prove insurability (good health) and the cost may be high for meager coverage.

Source: Financial Planning for Women