A startling number of people in the United States have no form of health insurance. In fact, that number is around 44 million people and growing. Today, there is no longer a mandate requiring people to have it. Because there’s no more fee for those who opt out of this kind of insurance, many individuals are choosing to go uninsured. This is especially true for self-employed workers.
As a self-employed worker, finding health insurance is a challenge. Because you can’t purchase a plan through an employer, many people don’t even know where to begin. There’s a stigma around finding your own plan. Namely, it’s thought to be complicated and expensive.
Luckily, neither of these things have to be true. There are more options for self-employed workers to find than ever before. In this guide, we’ll explain the many benefits of this insurance for self-employed individuals as well as concrete steps you can take to find your own insurance plan.
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The Real Cost of No Health Insurance
While we can all agree that healthcare is very expensive in the United States, this doesn’t mean you should boycott the entire system by opting out of health insurance. While the privatized system in the U.S. is highly flawed and in desperate need of reform, the risk of not having insurance is simply not worth it.
Think of it this way: if you drive your car without any insurance and get in an accident, you’re out all the money on your repair as well as the other driver, assuming you were at fault. You could end up without any car at all or a severely damaged one. That would leave you unable to get to work and lead your life as usual.
Multiply this tenfold and you’ll have the real cost of not having health insurance. Having insurance isn’t necessary to protect you from the minor things in life like the occasional visit to the doctor’s office. It’s to protect you from the car crashes, so to speak. If you have it, you can expect to pay a copay of around $50-100 for a visit to the emergency room. Without insurance, this cost can skyrocket to anywhere between $150 and $3000 just for basic care.
The Peace of Mind of Insurance
It’s true that finding insurance as a self-employed worker isn’t always easy, but it’s well worth the peace of mind. Not having insurance puts you at risk of unexpected payments and even bankruptcy.
In addition, health insurance will ensure you have access to care for preventative services and routine testing which could save you thousands down the road. Discovering a problem early on is key to keeping your treatment effective and affordable.
Essentially, you’re paying for the peace of mind that you can afford the care you need if you ever need it. There are also supplemental plan options that are particularly important for self-employed workers who don’t have many of the protections of a traditional workplace.
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Finding Self-Employed Insurance
The good news is you don’t have to struggle to find the right company. If you’re an individual who doesn’t work with anyone else, you can start your search with the federal Healthcare Marketplace. In some states, you might be able to purchase insurance for self-employed individuals through a group plan – check out HealthMarkets health insurance plans for self-employed.
When choosing your plan, consider how much you plan to utilize your healthcare benefits. If you’re in good health and don’t expect to need specialized care, you might not need to purchase the most expensive plan available. Only pay for the coverage you need at a price you can afford.
Protect Your Health
As a self-employed individual, you need to put your health first. Your business relied on your ability to take care of yourself. If you’re ill, in the hospital, or unable to pay for medical expenses, you won’t be doing your business any favors.
Because you care about your business, you need to care about self-employed health insurance. While we can all agree this nation has a ways to go on health insurance reform, we can start by making sure we’re protected by the unexpected elements of life.