The Affordable Care Act is in effect and for many, taking
action is what it is all about in order to get health care. For some who never have had health care
before, it may be a breath of fresh air. For others it is very overwhelming as
it is a lot of new information to digest.
For those who have had health care all along, it can also be a confusing
If you receive medical benefits from your employer, you will
be receiving updates from your employer about how your benefits change as a
result of the Affordable Care Act. You
may need to be patient to receive information as not all companies have all the
If you are an individual on your own trying to get coverage
or are self-employed, something that you may not have considered is to start
weeding through all the information on crafting the package that best suits
your particular situation. Not all
situations are created equal.
know it all has to do with your previous year’s income tax return if you are
looking into subsidies? Talk to your
tax person and dig deeper.
First you need to consider what state you live in and if
your state affects your situation and choices.
Some states have their own websites, too.
Also – beyond just health insurance, you are probably
re-examining your household budget and making said adjustments as a result of
this new health care reform.
Did you know that your AUTO INSURANCE medical coverage also
needs to be taken into consideration?
None of the many health care sites will tell you this. As you well know – auto insurance is NOT THE
SAME in every state. Rates are different.
Packages are different and medical coverage under said plans are different
state-to-state. And this may be
something you factor in as you consider your household budget with this new
Affordable Care Act in place to balance out your expenses for your coverage.
You need to look into your auto policy. How much medical coverage do you have? Does it overlap with your medical
benefits? Are you paying too much for
this coverage now as a result of the Affordable Care Act coming into play?
Does your auto insurance policy for
hospitalization cover only you or does it cover your passengers and HOW will
that look once you take a good look at your plan and expenses? Do you keep this component of your auto
insurance policy? Decrease it to save
funds because your health coverage is enough?
This all varies depending on the kind of coverage you have. Not every situation is the same because of
geography, packages, your customized auto policy for your household and also
how you use your car. This also could look
differently to some whether their automobiles are used only for personal use or
business use – some have vehicles they use specifically for their own
What you need to consider is all of the above and factor in
how you dissect your coverage.
If you are a business – C Corporation, S Corporation, LLC,
etc. – you may also need to look into the Small Business health care plan
coverage options and weigh them against the policies set for individuals. If you are a family owned business and it is
the family who is employees – this new Affordable Care Act can affect you in
different ways depending on these separate medical coverage package
options. Sometimes getting the package
as a business may be better for some than everyone getting coverage as an
Also what you need to consider is TAXATION. Contact your
accountant who is familiar with your annual tax returns for more information as
they are familiar with your income and household situation.
There are tax credits
affiliated with the Affordable Care Act and there are subsidies. But this is not an across-the-board easy
thing to understand because it is all based on INCOME. Depending on the income bracket you fall
under – and how you are set up as a household could also affect what you are
able or unable to do.
What tax offices are saying now is that your last year’s tax
return is what qualification for certain programs is based on. And this can vary state to state. If you have income which fluctuates, you
will owe back money. This could come as
a huge surprise and hit you hard in the wallet if you do not prepare ahead of
time as your income changes throughout the year. This particularly affects seasonal job folks
who have to ride the feast or famine train when work has ebbs and flows.
Each health care provider is different – it goes far beyond
the HMOs and the PPOs to understand. Co-Pays and deductibles need to be weighed
much like before but now with all the other factors put into consideration.
Your best bet is to take time to carefully research all your
options and take your own personal health scenario into consideration in order
to weigh which options work best for your particular financial situation as
well as any business situation you may have yourself tied to via taxes and
auto. For some, it is all tied together.
Be diligent about keeping notes. And if you are confused, do not hesitate to
make several calls or talk to someone else if you are getting flimsy answers.
This is not a time to ‘guess’ – it is about making sound decisions so you don’t
get stuck with having to owe money you did not anticipate or plan for based on
wrong information or selecting a plan or package that is not best suited to you.
Do not get frustrated.
Everyone is learning as they go. But the more information you gather and
see that the facts which apply to your particular situation are not
cookie-cutter for everyone, you’ll be able to customize the right plan to
choose for yourself and your family.
& Tess – We Solved It
for everyday PROBLEMS