It’s Complicated…

I came across an article on Kaiser Health News which is a great source for information regarding healthcare reform.  To summarize the article, not all families fit the neat shape of the qualifications for subsidies on the Health Insurance Marketplace.  Whether it is varying income or a family structure that doesn’t fit the mold of the plan.  And while the Navigators will be trained and will learn as they take calls or meet with with people, they will only have access to marketplace plans.  Hopefully, they will also be trained on other government based plans.  They will not be trained on plans available on the open market and they will not be allowed to make recommendations.  But I digress…

My point is that until the end of the year, there will be more options available to meet people’s needs than ever.  Some insurance companies such as United Healthcare, Assurant and Humana will continue to sell current, underwritten policies that you can keep through the end of 2014.  These policies will be considered compliant plans so you will not be subject to a penalty with these plans.  These plans will also be less expensive plans with a larger network of providers.

On the other hand, some people may be eligible for subsidies and be able to obtain less expensive insurance when taking the higher premium and subtracting the subsidy through the government marketplace.  Many of these plans will have smaller networks (EPO – Exclusive Provider Organization) and or be HMO based policies in order to keep the cost of insurance lower.

There are also other non-compliant plans that can provide medical cost assistance called fixed benefit plans.  If you are not subject to penalties for not having insurance because the cost of insurance is greater than 8.5% of your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI), this may be an option you prefer.

As you have heard me state before, it is best to work with a licensed health insurance producer (agent) because…  it’s complicated…  and because we have the most options available to find the best solution for you and your family’s needs.

Here is the article I referenced at the beginning of this post:

Complex Personal Issues May Cloud Decisions About Buying Insurance

More to come…

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