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Recently married or about to tie the knot? As you plan your wedding and your future, remember to include health insurance coverage for you and your spouse. Health insurance helps protect your health and your finances by providing benefits for expected and unexpected medical expenses.
If you are healthy, on a tight budget, and without job-based health insurance benefits, it may be tempting to opt out of health insurance coverage for a little while. Unfortunately, circumstances can change in an instant. It costs as much as $7,500 to fix a broken leg, and the average 3-day hospital stay is around $30,000.1 Ouch. Health insurance benefits can help lower what you pay out of pocket in these situations.
Fortunately, newlyweds who do not have access to health insurance benefits through an employer have several coverage options to accommodate their health care needs and financial situations.
1. Obamacare health insurance
Getting married is a life event that makes you eligible to buy health insurance outside of the Obamacare open enrollment. You and your spouse qualify for a special enrollment period that lasts 60 days from the date you say “I do.”
You can buy Obamacare health insurance plans through a state-based or federally facilitated health insurance exchange, as well as from an agent or health insurance company in the private marketplace. Keep in mind: If you qualify for a premium tax credit and wish to take advantage of the savings, you must purchase health insurance coverage from a state-based or federally facilitated health insurance exchange and apply for the subsidy.
2. Your spouse’s job-based health insurance coverage
If your spouse has health insurance coverage through his or her employer, you may be eligible for his or her workplace plan. Investigate this option promptly because these job-based special enrollment periods may last as few as 30 days. Your spouse should contact his or her human resources department or benefits enrollment specialist for details.
3. A parent’s health insurance plan
This option only applies if you are younger than age 26. Under the Affordable Care Act, you may be covered by a parent’s health insurance plan until your 26th birthday. You may be married. You may have access to your spouse’s health insurance plan. You may even have access to Obamacare health insurance through your own workplace. It doesn’t matter; you can maintain health insurance coverage through a parent. This applies to a parent’s job-based health insurance plan as well as health insurance plans purchased through state and federal exchanges and in the private marketplace.
If you earn up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level and live in a state that expanded its Medicaid program, you may be eligible for free or low-cost health insurance coverage.2 Visit your state’s health insurance exchange or Medicaid.gov to find out if you qualify and fill out an application. Medicaid enrollment lasts year-round.
5. Short term medical insurance
You can obtain temporary health insurance coverage, known as short term medical insurance, for as few as 30 days.3 Although these plans are not considered minimum essential health coverage, they often have lower monthly premiums than Obamacare plans and include benefits to help pay for medical care related to hospitalization and surgery—some plans even include a few preventive services. Short term medical plans can be a smart option for those who:
Why expose yourself to potentially high medical bills, even for a few weeks? Within minutes, you can apply for and enroll in short term medical insurance online.
Don’t forget your teeth
You may not be required to have dental insurance, but that doesn’t mean you should overlook it. Oral health is important to overall health, and studies show that those with dental insurance are more likely to visit the dentist.4 Dental insurance plans often cost less than people think and include steeply discounted or free preventive care, as well as benefits that help reduce the cost of basic and major services such as fillings and root canals.
You may have access to dental insurance coverage through your job or your spouse’s job. You can also buy it in the private marketplace through an agent or a website such as healthedeals.com.
Need help deciding what health insurance options are right for you? Call 888-839-7679 to talk to a health insurance adviser from healthedeals.com.
1HealthCare.gov. “Why health coverage is important: Protection from high medical costs.” https://www.healthcare.gov/why-coverage-is-important/protection-from-high-medical-costs/
2HealthCare.gov. “Medicaid & CHIP: Medicaid expansion & what it means for you.” https://www.healthcare.gov/medicaid-chip/medicaid-expansion-and-you/
3SHORT-TERM MEDICAL (STM) THIS IS A SHORT TERM HEALTH BENEFIT PLAN THAT IS NOT INTENDED TO QUALIFY AS THE MINIMUM ESSENTIAL COVERAGE REQUIRED BY THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT (ACA). UNLESS YOU PURCHASE A PLAN THAT PROVIDES MINIMUM ESSENTIAL COVERAGE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE ACA, YOU MAY BE SUBJECT TO A FEDERAL TAX PENALTY. ALSO, THE TERMINATION OR LOSS OF THIS POLICY DOES NOT ENTITLE YOU TO A SPECIAL ENROLLMENT PERIOD TO PURCHASE A HEALTH BENEFIT PLAN THAT QUALIFIES AS MINIMUM ESSENTIAL COVERAGE OUTSIDE OF AN OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD. THIS POLICY INCLUDES A PRE-EXISTING CONDITION EXCLUSION PROVISION.
4Cohen, Robin A. and Barbara Bloom. “Dental Insurance for Persons Under Age 65 Years with Private Health Insurance: United States, 2008.” NCHS Data Brief No. 40. June 2010. http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db40.pdf
About The IHC Group
The IHC Group is an organization of insurance carriers and marketing and administrative affiliates that has been providing life, health, disability, medical stop-loss and specialty insurance solutions to groups and individuals for over 30 years. Members of The IHC Group include Independence Holding Company (NYSE:IHC), American Independence Corp. (NASDAQ: AMIC), Standard Security Life Insurance Company of New York, Madison National Life Insurance Company, Inc. and Independence American Insurance Company. Each insurance carrier in The IHC Group has a financial strength rating of A- (Excellent) from A.M. Best Company, Inc., a widely recognized rating agency that rates insurance companies on their relative financial strength and ability to meet policyholder obligations. (An A++ rating from A.M. Best is its highest rating.) Collectively, the companies in The IHC Group provide insurance coverage to more than one million individuals and groups. For more information about The IHC Group, visit www.ihcgroup.com.
About IHC Specialty Benefits, Inc.
IHC Specialty Benefits, doing business as Health eDeals Insurance Solutions is a full-service marketing and distribution company that focuses on small employer, individual and consumer products. Health eDeals markets products through general agents online, telebrokerage, advisor centers, private label and directly to consumers. For more information about Health eDeals visit http://www.HealtheDeals.com.