Health Insurance for the Self Employed

Are you self-employed? Welcome to the world of entrepreneurs! This is one of the fastest growing areas of today's job market.

While it has advantages to be your own boss, it also has disadvantages. One of those disadvantages can be trying to negotiate individual policies for your health and dental coverage.

Except, you might not have to do that.

One of your best options is to join a group or association of self-employed people or professionals in your area. These groups often have access to health and dental plans on a group basis that can reduce your premiums, while giving you the kind of insurance you want.

If you can get your insurance through a professional group or association, it could save you a lot of money on your premiums and you are likely to be able to afford better coverage.

Still, always shop around! Talk to representatives of more than one organization. Speak to other self-employed people in your area. Do they belong to any local professional groups or associations? Do they have medical or dental coverage through these groups? Find out what kind of benefit's they receive and, if possible, talk about the costs. If you are speaking to another self-employed person, be sure to ask them if they are happy with the kind of health or dental coverage they have. Don't forget to ask how long they've had this coverage. Sometimes problems only arise with an insurer over time.

Here are some other things to do on your way to finding the right insurance for you:

  • Check with your State Department of Insurance and make sure the insurance company you are considering is licensed in your state.
  • Check the complaint index that most State Insurance Departments compile.
  • If you decide to sign up for coverage, READ THE PROPOSED POLICY FIRST! Read the Policy and Outline of Coverage word for word and ask questions if it does not make sense. Hopefully, the agent who calls on you will be ethical and knowledgeable. However, you have to be prepared that the agent may not be working in your interest.

If you don't like your options regarding dental and health insurance, you could consider a dental or health discount plan. In this case, you are really becoming a member of a buying group and with the negotiating power of the group behind them, the discount dental or health plan has arranged for lower fees for service for medical and dental care. Usually, the cost of membership is lower than the cost of insurance premiums and you'll see your savings right away. There are no co-payments and no deductibles. You'll simply pay a lower price for the work you have done.

It can be a good option for those who are self-employed, given the costs that can be associated with negotiating an individual health or dental policy.

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