About this time every year, health insurance enrollment opens for those who receive health benefits from their employer. This is the perfect time to reevaluate what your options are. I know every time I look at my paperwork, I have no idea so hubby and I sit down and look over everything.
Luckily, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) has created a list of helpful tips for you to look at and consider what your options might be. These are super handy and since this is such an important decision, it is something I suggest you read.
NAIC Health Insurance Tips
If you receive health insurance through an employer, consider the following before selecting coverage this year:
* Review options for changes: Don’t automatically renew what you have had before because employers are making changes due to rising costs.
* Do the math: To pick the best plan, calculate healthcare costs from recent years and try to estimate costs for the coming year; don’t assume you know what plan will be the most affordable.
* Check out tax-free savings: Open a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) plan or a health savings account if that is available to you. And, don’t forget about dependent care savings accounts.
* Look for wellness incentives: Find out if your employer is offering a wellness program or incentives for healthy behaviors such as exercising regularly or not smoking.
If you are self-employed, you face some unique challenges in finding and keeping health insurance, but you have a range of choices. Tax laws may allow you to deduct the cost of health insurance for yourself, your spouse and dependents.
* Spouse plan: First, check about being added to your spouse’s or domestic partner’s employer plan.
* Individual insurance: Consider shopping for private insurance. This option allows you to customize care to your lifestyle, health and budget. New Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plans could help if you have had trouble qualifying for coverage in the past
If you are unemployed, you were likely forced to determine how, or if, to continue your health insurance coverage within the past year.
* Now is a good time to review your decision and determine if your choice is still appropriate and if you or your family members might be eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
* Some professional or philanthropic associations offer state regulated health plans. For a fee, you can join these organizations and have the ability to participate in their plan.
I hope these tips help you out as you are thinking about health insurance. It is so important to make the right decisions when choosing plans. The great peeps over at NAIC have generously donated a Timex exercise heart rate monitor ($36 value) to help you achieve a healthy lifestyle. Enter to win! This is a RaffleCopter giveaway and the widget make take some time to load.