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Many of us don’t like the current state of the health insurance market. Let’s face it, health insurance is just too damn expensive and has high deductibles and stop losses. It is also hard on business, which is why many Republicans want to see the Affordable Healthcare Act (A.C.A., also known as Obamacare) eliminated by the Supreme Court. Here is what it could mean to you…
Elimination of Preexisting Conditions
There are over 140 million people that could be affected by this. Here is why. Prior to the implementation of the A.C.A., the health insurance companies were playing games with us. Every few years, they would come out with a new health insurance plan that was cheaper than their older plan and was very similar to the older plan, but had a few minor tweaks. Since it was less expensive, people would switch. The catch, however, was that you could only switch if you had no preexisting conditions. Once many switched, the insurance company would raise the rates on the old plans enormously, making these plans unaffordable. The A.C.A. cured this problem since there were no preexisting barriers to switching plans. Eliminating the A.C.A. would bring back this issue and affect over one-hundred million Americans.
Change in Lifetime Maximum
Here is something that I would bet many of you didn’t realize. There has been no media coverage about this either.
Prior to the A.C.A., health insurance had a one-million dollar LIFETIME maximum payout regardless of the stop loss in the policy. Thus, if you had a major illness, such as cancer, COVID-19, etc…, you could easily equal or exceed this limit. This forced many families into bankruptcy due to high medical bills.
The A.C.A., to its credit, eliminated the lifetime limit. The only limits were higher yearly deductibles and a stop loss,which could be several thousand dollars. However, there was no longer a lifetime limit on benefits. If the A.C.A. is totally scrapped, this lifetime limit can come back, which could totally wipe out many family’s savings. This is actually as big a problems as the loss of the pre-existing protection.
So what should you do?
If the Supreme Court decision scraps the A.C.A., you might want to consider purchasing some catastrophic health coverage ASAP. Many states offer this. It might have a big deductible such as $20,000 but at least there would be coverage for the big ticket items should they occur.
Bottom line: keep watching the Supreme Court developments on this. I will also post the results of any decision in order for you to take action. I am posting this because I believe that being forewarned will make you forearmed.
I should note that while the President promised to protect preexisting conditions, there might be a transition period where this doesn’t occur especially since there is no current plan for replacing the A.C.A. Moreover, you still have the potential one-million dollar lifetime cap issue even if preexisting conditions are protected in the future. I guess we will have to wait and see.
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