Self employed health insurance
It could be challenging to navigate your options when you are a self employed. You will need to buy your own private insurance. We gathered some tips and helpful information you can use when shopping for health insurance.
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If you are self employed you path for health insurance is different than most people who receive their health insurance and benefits through their employer. In your case, you are responsible for your own insurance and become your own HR department.
Why self employed needs insurance
Because medical bills are drowning Americans as it is the most common reason for bankruptcies. Besides, as a self employed, you empowered yourself and took the risks of not been a W2 employee. Don’t gamble and let medical bills to stop you from growing. Now it’s time to empower yourself with some peace of mind and get health insurance.
What are your health insurance options
You can buy private health insurance in a few ways, here’s a few:
The health insurance marketplace
The health insurance marketplace is where private health insurance companies sells their health plans. This marketplace also known as Obamacare, On-exchange and ACA (Affordable care act). You can buy plans only during the annual open enrollment (November 1- January 15), unless you are qualify for spacial enrollment. Visit the Marketplace site www.healthcare.gov
You may qualify for tax credits
When you are applying for coverage through the marketplace you will be asked to check if you are qualify for savings, you should check yes.
Based on your income, you may qualify for tax credits that will lower your monthly cost on your premium. If you nullify, you may have to send documents that verify your income.
Note: If your income is fluctuating and hard to predicts, you can use the income estimate feature and simply type your annual estimate.
You may deduct your health insurance premium
Many self employed individuals can deduct their health insurance premium from their taxes. This benefit is great for most self employed individuals. Now that been said, we are not tax professions and the scope of the information we gave you about tax deduction is limited, you should always to talk to a tax professional to see if your are eligible.
Outside of the health insurance marketplace
Shopping outside the marketplace can save you some paperwork, but you won’t be able to receive tax credits and other types of financial assistant if you qualify. You can buy those plans either directly from insurance companies or brokers. Keep in mind, you still have to enroll during open enrollment or spacial enrollment.
HSA Health savings account
HSA option can work great for you for a few reasons. First, HSA isn’t insurance, it is a saving account you can open and invest funds (up to an annual limit) with great tax benefits. Now here’s is the catch, you must buy high deductible plan.
The way HSA works is, as long as you spend the money in the account only on eligible medical expenses (Like your deductible, co pays, etc.) you can have the following benefits:
- You can write off the money you invest in.
- If you use the funds to pay for eligible medical expenses, you won’t have to pay taxed on the money pulled (Note: If you use the funds for reasons other than those expenses, you will have to pay taxes and a penalty).
Short term plan
You can buy a a short term medical plan for a period of 3 month to about a year. The policies usually cover only medically necessary procedures and emergencies and exclude preexisting conditions. So if you do decide to buy it, do your research and make sure you are properly protected.
- You can buy outside of open enrollment.
- Often more affordable than traditional plans.
- Usually packaged with large PPO network.
- Policies typically exclude preexisting conditions.
- You have to answer medical questions when applying.
- Wellness and preventative care are usually not covered.
- Not subject to the Affordable care act guidelines and not available in every state.
Tips for shopping for a plan
Here are a few pro tips you can use weather shopping on your own or with an agent.
If you apply through the marketplace
- Don’t waive the option to apply for savings, even if you don’t think you going to get subsidies. You may be surprise as most people do qualify.
- If your income fluctuate and you are struggle to determine your monthly pay, use the estimate income feature and reasonably estimate your annual income.
If you buy a short term plan
- Short term plans often have many restrictions and limitations, read the find print. Especially if you have medical needs.
- If your state allows short term plans to last a year, make sure the policy always ends in January 1. That way, you are align with the marketplace open enrollment period and if you can’t renew your short term, you can always pivot back to a traditional plan.
Supplement your plan
No matter what kind of plan you choose, you most likely will have out of pocket expenses if you have to use your insurance (Like deductible co pays and coinsurance). But you can help it, you can purchase supplement plans for health insurance, which are separate from your main health plan and can provide coverage for accidents, injuries, critical illness and hospital stay.
How to buy
If you are ready to enroll in a health plan, here is how we can help.
Buy a marketplace plan
Buy short term plans
- Directly from insurance companies that offers a short term plan. (If available in your state)
- Through us, go to our short term page.
The information on this page is only for general education purposes . We do our best to audit our blogs periodicity and make sure information is accurate and up to date.