Working from home can make health insurance a tricky question. Many who are self-employed simply don’t bother with health insurance at all and just hope that they don’t get sick. Whether you’re an at-home employee, a freelancer or you run your own business, here are some things you might want to know about health insurance:
1. Do You Have “Employees?”
If you have people working under you, you should look into the difference between a salaried employee and a contract worker if you can’t afford to buy insurance for them.
2. You May Qualify for Low-Income Insurance Programs
There are a lot of options for getting insured if you don’t make a lot of money. Every state offers different programs.
3. “Hope” is Not a Plan
It’s really not a good idea to go without insurance. Look into the options that you have available in your state, because the cost of maintaining your health only goes up with age.
4. You Have More Freedom With a Self-Bought Plan
If your employer does not provide you with insurance, you are free to explore marketplace plans.
5. The Marketplace May Save You Money
You might just qualify for lower premium costs when you buy through the marketplace. It’s worth a look.
6. They Can’t Turn You Away at the E.R.
It’s not a great long-term plan, but if you’ve only just gotten off of an employer’s health plan, it’s good to know that emergency rooms will always take you if you have strep throat, a broken finger or any other basic condition.
7. If You’re a Full Time Employee, Your Boss Needs to Cover You
There is a line drawn between “contractor” and “employee.” Figure out which side you’re on.
8. Try to Get Dental Coverage
You may want to settle for whatever you can get, but try to be on the lookout for dental coverage, as well.
9. Get Prescription Coverage, Too
Medication can be very expensive. If you don’t have pills and medicine at least partly covered by your insurance plan then you’re going to be paying quite a bit out of pocket.
10. Consider a Second Job for Health Reasons
Even if you’re self-employed, even if you’re making enough money, taking on a second job that offers health coverage might not be a bad idea, even if it will complicate your taxes a bit at the end of the year.
11. “Spouse’s Employer” is an Option
Many employer insurance plans offer coverage for an employee’s spouse. This may be an option for you if you are married. Look into your partner’s healthcare plan and see if this is available to you.
12. There Are More Changes on the Way
The Affordable Care Act is still rolling out changes, and things are going to continue to change throughout the year.
13. It Comes With Tax Breaks
Buying health insurance can earn you some nice tax breaks, so it may be a wiser purchase than you think.