If you want to find a new job, it’s essential to understand how health insurance works during this time. During a job transition, there may be gaps in coverage that can be costly.
If you’re eligible, it allows you to keep your group health plan through your old employer for up to 18 months.
Closing the Health Insurance Coverage Gap
While a gap in health insurance coverage may seem like a minor issue, it can be devastating for consumers with chronic medical conditions or who experience an unexpected illness. Individuals are responsible for paying for out-of-pocket medical costs without a health insurance plan. So, what to do for health insurance between jobs? Job changes can be emotionally and financially taxing, mainly if they are unanticipated. It might be challenging to find your way through buying health insurance.
By enrolling in a new health plan, consumers should be prepared to close this gap during job transitions. This is especially important if they have a chronic condition requiring ongoing care or any unexpected medical events during the transition period.
Many people who lose employer-sponsored insurance (ESI) will be eligible for a particular enrollment period that allows them to enroll in ACA-compliant marketplace coverage. This period can last up to 12 months, and many states are expanding ACA marketplace subsidy eligibility to more people than ever before.
However, many consumers need help to complete the enrollment process. This can be due to a need for more knowledge about marketplace coverage or various challenges.
To help consumers avoid a coverage gap, states should expand outreach and assistance to assist consumers in applying for marketplace coverage. They should also improve the marketplace application process and ensure eligibility information is available for Medicaid-eligible consumers. Finally, they should streamline their eligibility determinations to reduce administrative burdens and speed up enrollment.
Options for Temporary Health Insurance Coverage
The short-term health insurance market is an excellent option for temporary coverage. You can find plans through an online insurance marketplace or from an individual insurance company. Some providers offer multiple options in varying price ranges, so you can choose the one that best fits your needs and budget.
Many short-term plans have deductibles and coinsurance, which means you’ll pay a share of the cost of your medical care after meeting your deductible. That can make a big difference in the amount you spend on your medical care.
In addition, you can combine temporary health insurance with a health savings account (HSA), which transfers more of the responsibility for your medical expenses to you. These accounts can be funded with pre-tax dollars and help you save money on doctor visits, prescriptions, and over-the-counter medications.
However, temporary health insurance coverage doesn’t include all the essential health benefits the Affordable Care Act outlined. It does not cover maternity or mental health, for example. It also does not have the same lenient medical underwriting rules as ACA-compliant plans.
Understanding the differences between a temporary health insurance plan and an ACA-compliant plan is essential before you sign up for either. Regardless of your plan type, ensuring you can afford to pay for your coverage is necessary.
Enrolling in a New Health Insurance Plan
One of the essential things you can do when going through a job transition is to ensure you have access to adequate healthcare. This can reduce your risk of developing costly medical conditions or illnesses and help you avoid a hefty bill in an emergency.
Health insurance is critical to this process, so finding the right plan for your needs is essential. Working with an experienced broker can help you identify the best coverage options for your unique situation and budget constraints.
You must decide whether to purchase a new individual or group health insurance plan. If you opt for the latter, ask your employer about any ACA-compliant plans they offer.
Employers often offer employees a particular enrollment period for ACA-compliant health insurance coverage. This is an excellent option for those who have lost their existing job-based insurance and don’t have time to secure temporary coverage before their new employment begins.
If your old plan ends and you enroll in a new one before the particular enrollment period ends, you’ll have seamless coverage. In addition, you may be able to switch to an ACA-compliant plan during this period if you experience a qualifying life event like losing other health coverage or based on estimated household income.
Ensuring that You’re Covered
Planning and preparation can go a long way, considering what you will do next in your career. One of the things you should do is check your current coverage and employer’s policy to ensure you are not missing out on valuable benefits. Sometimes, this can mean the difference between life and death for you and your loved ones if you have an accident. In addition, it’s also essential to determine if your new employer is offering any health insurance benefits at all. You may be able to take advantage of your employer’s negotiated insurance benefits to get the coverage you need at an affordable price.
Another helpful step in your preparation is to develop a transition plan. This might sound like overkill to some people, but it will ensure a smoother transfer of power and an easier time for your successor. It should include a list of tasks and deadlines that need to be addressed, along with the names and contact details of key individuals in the chain of command. The best part is that it should be easy to implement.