How to Get Affordable Temporary Health Insurance  

How to Get Affordable Temporary Health Insurance

If you’re looking for health insurance for a short period of time – from one to twelve months – temporary insurance is your best bet. Short term insurance plans are good for people who are between jobs, waiting for their group insurance to begin covering them, or have recently graduated from college. Coverage can start in as little as twenty-four hours. Typically, temporary insurance plans offer coverage up to six months, though the longer plans can cover you for up to a year. The application process for this kind of insurance is much simpler than most long-term kinds of insurance. This speeds the process of getting short term insurance, as it allows your application to be processed quickly.

Short term insurance plans generally are designed to be used to protect against unforseen accident and illness over a short period of time. Because of this, they often don’t cover pre-existing conditions. Short term insurance can also invalidate your eligibility for HIPAA coverage through your state. This coverage is intended for people who have trouble getting insurance elsewhere, and is often very expensive, but if you’re worried about your eligibility for HIPAA coverage, you should avoid temporary insurance plans. You can talk to your benefits advisor about this in more detail.

You have the choice of paying for your short term insurance monthly, or in a lump sum. Monthly payments are best for people who don’t know exactly how long they’ll need to be covered, or who can’t afford the lump sum. Single payments up front are less expensive, and good for anyone who can afford the sum and knows how long they would like to be covered. When you pay all of your insurance premiums up front for temporary insurance, you must know the period of your coverage. Most short term health plans only permit you to reapply once, so you can’t usually extend your term much.

Short term coverage usually only applies in units of thirty days, so even if you need less than this amount of time, you will have to purchase an entire month of coverage. Partial months cannot be refunded. Temporary insurers will generally let you know if you qualify for your insurance almost as soon as your application is processed. You’re not obligated to buy the plan, even if you qualify, though some companies do charge a nonrefundable application fee. Generally, dental and vision benefits are not part of short-term insurance, since they don’t fall under the accident or illness provisions of that insurance.

It is possible to insure just yourself, or your whole family with short term insurance. This is helpful if you’re between jobs and your group coverage is going to lapse. Temporary insurance is a good tool to keep your coverage continuous through changes of employment or other life altering situations. It can act as a safety net to keep you from mounting medical bills in case of emergencies, and is less expensive than many kinds of coverage.
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