Being your own boss is exciting! You are in control and doing something you really love! But what about what most people use for their employer: health insurance?
What are your options in the healthcare world when you are independent? We'll walk you through the different ways to get good coverage here!
How to get health insurance if you are self-employed?
Being self-employed can mean anything from your own business to self-employment. Either way, you are walking a tightrope to be your own boss and be responsible for everything, including your health insurance!
So let's talk about the options if you are planning to become self-employed for a short period of time or if you know it is part of your long term plans.
What is Best For you?
Health insurance if you are self-employed for a short period
The world of work can be unpredictable. You might feel pretty stable at the stage of your career then boom! Life goes by and you are on a different path for a while.
Do you have adequate health insurance? You could save hundreds!
Suppose we have a friend named Ollie. You have just left a job in a company where you were registered for your group health insurance. But now that he's gone, Ollie is working freelance and adding a few more classes to his knowledge. She plans to return to the workforce full time as soon as possible.
What are your short term solutions for interim health insurance? We will see!
Okay, Ollie could continue his former employer's group health plan with COBRA health insurance. With COBRA, you can temporarily keep the same employer-linked health insurance plan you had at your previous job (usually up to 18 months). But Ollie will pay him more each month because his employer no longer pays part of the premium.
Short term health insurance
Another option for Ollie (if he wants to save money on his premium) is short-term health insurance. How long are we talking? Well, it can take up to three months. 1 Ollie might sign up for a short term plan outside of the normal sign up period, which is a bonus, and his monthly rewards will below. But there is a reason for this! Short-term policies come at a high cost and likely won't cover Ollie's pre-existing conditions if he has them. Therefore, you should check with the insurer before signing up.
Industry-specific health insurance
Let's say Ollie plans to become self-employed for a while between jobs. And you are in luck because you have found a trade union that offers health insurance at a reduced price. There are other industry-specific health insurance plans for everyone from supervisors to alumni groups. However, always read the fine print in these situations to avoid paying more for a plan that gives you less health care than the market.
Health insurance if you are permanently self-employed
Now let's take a look at the long-term self-employed. There are several ways to cover your health care and insurance. It all depends on what you're looking for, how much income you're earning, and who is in need of the coverage.
Take Rebecca. She is in her 30s and works as an independent supervisor. She is also a single mother of two. Here are your options:
Health insurance market
The first step Rebecca could take is to visit the public health insurance market. This is where you can find out if you qualify for Medicaid, tax credits, or reduced health insurance premiums.2 You can also enroll your children in the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) if you are eligible for this assistance.
Private health insurance
Some insurers have plans for people like Rebecca - people who are self-employed and need medical care with good coverage at an affordable price. Rebecca's life is busy! She needs a plan that offers a wide range of benefits for herself and her children at no additional cost - from access to network providers and hospitals to annual checkups and preventative care. Rebecca's best choice?