How We Chose The Best Health Insurance For The Unemployed
Our analysis looked at 30 health insurers nationwide to identify the best companies based on the benefits they offer to those facing unemployment. We chose insurers with widespread geographic representation who provide flexible policies geared toward individuals with short-term insurance needs. Since financial strain is a main concern during periods of unemployment, we weighed policy pricing heavily by comparing quotes from five sample markets. Finally, we evaluated accessibility to care, including the number of in-network providers and the availability of telehealth services.
Do I Need To File A Tax Return If I Don’t Have Income But I Do Have Healthcare
If you receive premium tax credits, then you must file tax returns, even if your income level wouldn’t normally require a tax return. In other words, if you don’t pay full price for your healthcare coverage, then you will need to file tax returns regardless of your income. You will know whether you use premium tax credits to pay for healthcare, because you will receive an IRS Form 1094-A.
What Programs Are Available If I Dont Work
Younger members of our community may still be be eligible for health coverage under their parents policies. Recent changes in federal law have increased the age a child may continue on a parents policy from 24 to 26.
Some states, such as Ohio, have increased the eligibility age to 28.
Those Americans, who have reached the age of 65, are automatically qualified for Medicare. While qualification is automatic, enrollment is required. In 2011, Medicare open enrollment began on October 15 and continues until December 7.
Those eligible include all those who are 65 or older, and those who will turn 65 before December 31.
Basic Medicare provides hospital and medical coverage. Usually, the nominal premiums are deducted from a recipients Social Security benefit checks.
However, depending on the plan selected, there are still out-of-pocket expenses including co-pays, deductibles, prescriptions and other costs, just as there would be with private health insurance coverage.
There are certainly choices that seniors must make under this government-subsidized program. Most often, those that can afford additional coverage purchase a supplemental insurance package, designed to cover the expenses that Medicare does not.
There are many such supplemental programs available. Some health insurance contractors have become specialists in providing Medicare supplementary insurance and only market these kinds of programs.
Don’t Miss: Unemployment Fax Phone Number
How Much Is Health Insurance Without A Job
The cost of a health insurance plan without a job can vary. However, there are ways to lower your costs if you choose an Affordable Care Act health insurance plan. When you begin shopping for an individual health insurance plan, you should pay special attention to subsidies. If you qualify for them, subsidies can lower the cost of your monthly premiums and out-of-pocket expenses. Here are two of the main subsidy types.
- A premium tax credit is a type of subsidy that can help lower your monthly premiums, if youre eligible. You can choose to have the credit paid directly to your health insurance provider to be applied toward your premium,2 or you can claim your premium amount when you file your income tax return.3
- A cost-sharing reduction , also called extra savings, is a type of subsidy that can help lower your out-of-pocket costs, including deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance. If you qualify, you have to enroll in a Silver plan to get the extra savings.
You can check your eligibility for these subsidies online.
Best Catastrophic Coverage: Bluecross Blueshield
Coverage options vary across 35 regional companies
Certain unemployed individuals qualify for low-cost catastrophic coverage, particularly those younger than 30 years old and some low-income households. If you fall into the former category, you may be interested in BCBSs Young Adult plan, a policy designed for individuals ages 18 to 30 who otherwise could not afford insurance.
BCBS is divided into 35 independent companies across the United States, catastrophic coverage is offered under several different names depending on your region.
Policy terms also vary by location, but they all share the common characteristics of catastrophic insurance: low premiums, high deductibles, and free access to preventive medicine required by the Affordable Care Act.
Catastrophic policies offered by BCBS can be either HMOs or PPOs depending on the state, but even if you do need to stay in-network, know that the BCBS provider network is one of the largest in the country.
You May Like: 888-372-3453
Is My Employer Required To Provide Medical Benefits To My Spouse Domestic Partner Or Dependent Children
Much like employers are not required by law to provide health and welfare benefits to employees, they are equally not required to provide those benefits to spouses, domestic partners or dependent children. If, however, an employer voluntarily provides spousal benefits through an insurance provider or health maintenance organizations , the employer must also provide those same benefits to registered domestic partners of the covered employees. Thats because AB 2208 requires equal treatment of spouses and registered domestic partners in all aspects of insurance coverage.
Note: AB 2208 applies to insurance providers and HMOs who supply insurance to an employers employees, but does not apply to employers who self-insure, who are not required to provide equal domestic partner coverage to their employees.
What Is The Cheapest Health Insurance
Short-term and catastrophic coverage plans are usually the cheapest health insurance options for anyone who recently has lost their job. However, there are downsides to both. Short-term coverage lasts only for up to one year and is banned or restricted in some states. Youll need to be younger than 30 years old or meet low-income requirements to qualify for catastrophic coverage, and even if you do, those low premiums come at the expense of high deductibles.
You May Like: How Do I Apply For Unemployment In Tn
What Is Cobra Insurance And Is It Worth It
The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, commonly known as COBRA, is a federally mandated program through which you can retain your employer’s policy for up to 18 months. If you do elect COBRA coverage, be prepared to pay significantly higher monthly premiums youll be required to cover the amount your employer was contributing plus a 2% administration fee. COBRA often isnt worth it, as most unemployed individuals can find a much more affordable policy on the marketplace.
The Importance Of Understanding Your Health Insurance Options
The COVID-19 pandemic means its more important than ever to have some level of health coverage. Thankfully, testing for the virus is now free for all Americans, with or without insurance. But, the cost and coverage of treatment for COVID-19 is a different story.
If you end up needing hospital care and are uninsured, you could be responsible for an enormous bill. To estimate COVID-19 treatment costs, a study by Kaiser Family Foundation looked at hospital stays for pneumonia. Researchers found that the average total cost for one stay was around $10,000 for patients who had no complications. That amount jumped to $20,000 for patients who experienced major complications.
Also Check: Applying For Unemployment In Pennsylvania
Once I Am Receiving Benefits Can My Employer Terminate Them
Yes. An employer may at any time amend the terms of an existing plan, including termination of the plan. Additionally, an employer may reduce or terminate health benefits of retired former employees who become eligible for Medicare Benefits without violating the Age Discrimination in Employment Act.
Exception: An employer may not terminate, suspend, discipline, discriminate, or take any adverse action against the employee for exercising his or her rights under a plan or ERISA, or for giving information or testimony in an investigation or proceeding relating to ERISA.
Get On Your Spouses Domestic Partners Or Parents Health Insurance
If your spouse or domestic partnerâs job offers health insurance coverage to employeesâ spouses and dependents, getting added to their plan can be a simple solution.
A spouseâs or partnerâs health insurance is a known quantity: Your spouse is already familiar with the benefits, costs and deductibles, and knows the level of coverage, which can help in assessing its value. On the other hand, if their coverage doesnât fit your needs, you may want to explore other options.
Normally, you can enroll in health insurance only once a year, during âopen enrollment,â which takes place in the fall. However, leaving your job is considered a qualifying event, and gives you 30 days to sign up for your spouseâs or partnerâs plan no matter the time of year. Youâll need to complete an application and may need to provide proof that you are losing your health insurance.
Recommended Reading: How To Apply For Tdiu Va
How Long Have You Been Unemployed
If you are in a bout of short-term unemployment, such as a lay-off, there is a good chance you can still be approved for life insurance. If you have a history of steady employment and plan on working again soon, many companies would approve your application.
If you have a good skill-set and have made a decent income in the not-too-distant past, there is a good chance your application would be approved since the chances of you getting a job are good.
If you worked in an industry that typically has jobs-a-plenty, insurance companies will view your application more favorably. If you worked in an industry that is on a decline, such as a dial-up Internet installer, you might have a little more trouble getting insurance.
» Compare: Term life insurance quotes
If you stopped working to be a stay-at-home parent, this is a different situation. While you are technically unemployed, you still work. The duties of a stay-at-home parent total many jobs in one.
Typically, life insurance companies will allow a stay-at-home parent to have coverage equal to that of the working spouse. If the working spouse makes a substantial amount of money and has a substantial amount of life insurance coverage, insurance companies may cut the coverage for the stay-at-home parent in half. Needless to say, having life insurance coverage on both parents is vital.
Can I Enroll In Marketplace Health Insurance If My Employer Offers Insurance
The Affordable Care Act ensures that almost all Americans can buy individual and family health insurance from the online Marketplace. To qualify to shop on the Marketplace, there are just a few general requirements. You need to live in the U.S., not be incarcerated, and be a U.S. citizen or hold a number ofpermitted immigration statuses that include being a refugee, a green card holder, a survivor of domestic violence, and more. If you meet these general criteria, you can shop for Obamacare plans during the annual Open Enrollment Period . You can also shop on the Marketplace during aSpecial Enrollment Period if you have aqualifying life event like a marriage, birth, or move.
Many people like to shop on the health insurance Marketplace for its comprehensive, affordable health insurance plans. Want to compare prices to see if Marketplace coverage might be less expensive than opting into your employer-provided plan? Youll need to consider a few things, especially when it comes to your bottom-line costs.
To see plans and prices in your area, enter your zip code below.
Don’t Miss: Www.njufile
Health Insurance Discount Cards
Health insurance discount cards give members access to negotiated low-cost healthcare. Theyre not insurance plans, but rather an option you might want to explore as a last resort.
Youll pay a small monthly fee and get a discounted rate on your services when you go to a doctor or hospital. Youll still end up paying all your medical costs, but at least youll pay less.
How Do I Get Health Insurance If I Lose My Job
There are many ways to get health insurance if you lose your job. The first is COBRA, which allows you to keep your previous employer’s insurance plan but can be expensive. Becoming unemployed also qualifies you for a special enrollment period, which means you can purchase any new insurance policy for up to 60 days after you lose your job. In some states, short-term health coverage is an affordable option that can keep you insured for up to 364 days while you look for new work.
Recommended Reading: What Should I Claim For Va Disability
Best For Families: Molina
Only available in 11 states
AM Best rating unavailable
Some user reviews report issues with claims
Becoming unemployed is incredibly stressful if you also have a family to consider, and health insurance costs can be considerable if you have several dependents. Molina is our best choice for families, as they have economical and cost-saving options, with benefits geared toward pregnancies and children.
Molina offers insurance for individuals and families through Medicaid, Medicare, and the Marketplace. If your income is between 138% to 400% of the federal poverty level, you can use tax credits for Molina plans to reduce the monthly premiums significantly. Plus, no matter how large your family, the deductible is capped at twice the individual deductible.
Molina has excellent family perks, such as wellness and preventative health services, plus child and adolescent shots, pediatric preventative healthcare, and pregnancy care.
A drawback with Molina is their policies are limited to 11 states. You may also need to look for a new doctor who partners with them because of their limited network.
Can I Still Get Life Insurance If Im Unemployed
08 Jul 2021
While life insurance can be a sensitive subject to tackle, it is nonetheless worthy of serious consideration. The Covid-19 pandemic has brought this into sharp focus, but it has also resulted in enormous economic disruption and a great number of job losses across the globe, leaving many people wondering whether they can still apply for life insurance if they are unemployed?
The answer is clear: you can take practical steps to care for your loved ones should something happen to you, whether working or unemployed. There are, however, some factors to consider when applying for life insurance if you are unemployed.
The status of your health, assets and unemployment period are aspects that insurers will seek to understand before writing a policy. For example, if you recently retired and have accumulated savings over the course of your career, this will be a positive factor in your application.
A life insurance policy need not be expensive, with shorter-term, affordable policies based on your current employment status widely available.
Should you find yourself unemployed in the UAE and seeking life insurance, insurers will ask for a valid UAE residence visa and a document detailing your assets that will enable your insurer to recommend the policy that best fits you.
Also Check: File For Unemployment In Tn
Best Health Insurance Companies For The Unemployed Of 2021
- Best For Singles: Kaiser Permanente
Why We Chose It: United Healthcare is our top choice for the unemployment health insurance category thanks to their expansive network, an impressive range of added benefits, and flexible TriTerm policy allowing up to three years of coverage.
Online quotation and purchasing system
Large provider network
Smartphone app that integrates with medical records
Options without special enrollment periods
Added health and wellness benefits
Not available in some locations
More expensive than some providers
Unemployment often represents uncertainty. For those who are unsure if and when employer-sponsored health insurance will begin, their TriTerm cover of up to three years is an ideal option. This makes United Healthcare an easy choice for our overall top pick for unemployed insurance.
United Healthcare is a giant among health insurance providers, with a network covering more than 1.3 million doctors and 6,500 hospitals in the United States. With an A rating for their financial stability from AM Best, United also boasts an unparalleled range of benefits and a massive range of plans.
Available policies extend to individual health insurance, group options, dental, and vision. They also offer Medigap, Medicaid, Medicare Advantage, and prescription drug plans.
These prices are higher than most competitors, which was a drawback of the United Healthcare policies.
You May Like: How To Apply For Unemployment In Chicago
Tips If Youre Unemployed And Need Health Care
It might be impossible to predict when your job could be coming to an end, but there are things you can do to keep yourself ahead of the game and have a backup plan if you suddenly find yourself out of work and out of health insurance.
1. Start to find new coverage as soon as possible.
Even before you leave a job, theres nothing wrong with talking to those helpful folks in Human Resources about your health insurance benefits and what will happen to them if you leave. Youll be able to find out how much COBRA coverage will cost you and use this info to decide whether to stick with COBRA or go it alone in the health insurance marketplace.
2. Have all your important details ready.
When youre all set to talk COBRA or marketplace or even Medicaid, heres the information you should have ready: your income, total household income, Social Security number, pay stubs, tax records, information about your current health insurance plan, and the number of dependents in your household.
3. Get advice from an independent insurance agent.
4. Keep your emergency fund full.
An emergency fund is a must no matter what your situation is in life! But its super important if youre out of work and out of health insurance coverage. Your emergency fund takes away the worry of those unpredictable trips to the doctor and routine checkups that come with out-of-pocket costs. Having a fully funded emergency fund will give you the ability to pay for insurance during a gap period without all the stress.
Don’t Miss: Louisiana File For Unemployment