Health Insurance Options for New Hires in the Waiting Period
You’ve just landed a new job and you’re excited about proving your worth to your new employer. Despite your excitement in accepting the job, you’re concerned about your insurance benefits not starting right away. Should you play it safe and find some other coverage or take the risk of waiting until you’re eligible for company insurance?
Many new employees find themselves in this precarious situation of waiting as long as 90 days for their insurance to take effect. Some learn the hard way that sickness or injury can occur at any time.
Let’s suppose you’re starting a new position as a magazine writer. You’re happy with your salary but your benefits don’t take effect for a month. What would happen to you if you’re in a car accident next week and must be rushed to the emergency room? You’d be on the hook for some large medical bills for the ambulance and ER treatment.
So let’s look at a couple of viable options that you’d have in getting health insurance coverage that would keep you from paying these emergency expenses out of pocket.
Coverage in the health insurance Marketplace
One of your insurance options will be to get health insurance coverage through the Marketplace created under the Affordable Care Act. This new federal health care law mandates that Americans get health insurance coverage unless they meet specified exemptions or pay a fine. The fine for 2014 is up to $95 per person for the year or 1% of your annual household income.
Each month of being classified as “uninsured” causes you to pay one-twelfth of the full 12-month penalty. But if you’re uninsured for less than 3 months, you don’t have to pay the fine, according to Healthcare.gov.
Since your insurance at the magazine starts in a month, you might not have to pay a fine for going without Marketplace insurance coverage (depending on how long you might have been without insurance in your job search).
And depending on your income and the cost of coverage available to you in the Marketplace, you might find that another option is more affordable in any case.
Short term medical insurance
Short term medical (STM) insurance is designed for temporary transitions such as your waiting period for the new job. This temporary insurance would protect you from emergency medical costs until your company insurance takes effect.
Since STM doesn’t require medical underwriting, you can enroll quickly to start your coverage right away. Another benefit is that you can choose the doctor or hospital that you like without having to pay out-of-network penalties.
Get a free STM quote today to see the affordability of this temporary insurance. This policy from HCC Life gives you a 10-day money back guarantee. If you’re unsatisfied, send a written cancellation request within 10 days and you’ll receive a refund of your full premium if you haven’t already used the insurance benefits.