March 1, 2014

Preparing for layoffs - Health Insurance

So this second round of lay offs at work has me in panic mode.  I'm lucky to still have a job.  But am looking into the what ifs?

One of my biggest concerns if I lost my job is health insurance.  My husband's work only helps pay for the employee.  He can get family coverage but they only help pay for his portion.  The last time he checked, family coverage was over $1200 per month.

So I went to the site to check out our options just in case and now I'm a bit worried.  I figured since the family plan was outrageous at Mr. R's work we would qualify for help towards insurance costs.  Then I came across this section.  I don't know for sure, but I think Mr. R's plan would qualify as an "affordable" plan.  So does this mean we wouldn't qualify for help towards health insurance costs?  How can they decide if a plan is affordable for a family just based on the cost for 1 person?

“Affordable” plans and the 9.5% standard

A job-based health plan is considered “affordable” if the employee’s share of premiums for the lowest cost self-only coverage that meets the minimum value standard is less than 9.5% of their family’s income.
In other words, if your share of your premiums for a plan that covers only you (the employee)--not your family--is less than 9.5% of your family’s income, the plan is considered affordable.
You may pay more than 9.5% of your income on premiums for spouse or family coverage from your employer. But affordability is determined only by the amount you’d pay for self-only coverage from your employer.


  1. 1200 for medical insurance...holy crap. It's outrageous what is being charged. We have a 2500 deductible with my employer sponsored insurance, and it's biweekly cost is titrated based on what you make an hour. For example, I pay 174 every two weeks for medical due to my hourly wage. A housekeeper would pay 74 dollars every two weeks based on what she would would, deductibles remain the same. I am worried that I would have to go to the "health care exchange" if my position was eliminated.

  2. While this is certainly worrysome, check your alternatives. Got kids? contact the school/board of ed and see about a state sponsored, Health insurance program through the schools. Is there also a state one for families? By law, yes, you are entitled to continue with your current medical ins plan if let go, called COBRA, for up to 18 or 24 months. Tends to be UBBER expensive. Mine would be close to $2000/month. Thud. How much would it cost you to continue under your current plan, if let go? compare that to the $1200 if added to DH's. This is not an easy time for medical insurance, to be sure. Contact also your local, town/city social worker-they may have some additional resources. Many are out of work, so agencies are more knowledgeable perhaps, than in years past.
    Good luck!