Posted September 21, 2013 | Filed under topic Self Employed Health Insurance
Being self-employed can be both a blessing and a curse. Working for yourself allows you to call the shots for yourself, but also means that you must be willing to research what options are available to you when it comes to self-employed health insurance that won’t set you back too much financially. There are approximately 40 million Americans that work for themselves and what that means is that they are all looking to find self-employment health insurance that doesn’t take a sizable bite out of their budgets. A multitude of factors are to be taken into consideration when it comes to insuring yourself and we will examine them to help you get the type of health insurance that best fits your income.
Utilizing the Ex-Employer’s Plan
Should you be retirement age – or close to it – you are eligible to receive Medicare coverage once you reach the age of 65. Medicare can cover most of the health care costs and releases a lot of the stress related to finding self-employed health insurance. If it is an option for you, some companies allow their retired workers to purchase self-employed health insurance through their very own company plans. If you are lucky enough, the company that you have worked for in the past may even subsidize part of the premium, which can be costly.
Insurance Through Spouse’s Health Insurance Plan
If you are married and your spouse works for a company that extends coverage to their partners, then you are in luck and eligible to receive benefits as well. Although the premium most likely will be higher, it is still more financially viable than a stand-alone policy. The most important thing to remember in applying for coverage through your spouse’s company is that many companies that do so only allow enrollment through the the so-called ‘open enrollment season’. To ensure that you don’t have a lapse in coverage, you may want to schedule your actual self-employment around that time.
The Benefits of COBRA
The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, better known as COBRA to the general public, mandates that companies provide health coverage for employees for up to 18 months after leaving the company. Since COBRA is considered expensive, the best option is to change your option to a less expensive one before vacating your position, which effectively lowers your premium.
Insurance Through a Professional Group
Those leagues, alumni associations, or trade groups you may have read about in your human resources department at work may be able to offer you self-employed health insurance at an attractive rate. Should you also be a member of any special interest groups, you may want to check into the health care packages they offer. If you are a freelancer, there are scores of options available to you depending on your professional work and the state you live in.
Buying Your Own Self-Employed Health Insurance
If you are in good health, you may save more money by signing for policies entirely on your own. These policies also can vary tremendously, so it is important to research companies that offer it before you come to a conclusion on which one is best for you. When it comes to self-employed health insurance, one of the most important factors can be how healthy you are so it it important to always be up to date on your medical appointments.
Continue the Search Before You Decide
Self-employed health insurance doesn’t have to be the headache that many people expect it to be. With proper research and paying attention to what’s available in your neck of the woods, you may find an alternative health care plan for you.