With the rising cost of healthcare and the growing instability of jobs, it’s important to know how you can get health insurance without a job. There are several options for finding health insurance that don’t necessarily involve working at a job. For example, spouses may be able to get health insurance through their partner’s plan, COBRA can help former employees stay on their employer-sponsored plans for up to 18 months after leaving a job, Medicaid expansion offers eligible individuals more comprehensive coverage than traditional Medicaid programs do—and there are many other ways too!
Health insurance through a spouse
If you have a spouse, they may be able to get health insurance through their employer even if they don’t work. This is common for stay-at-home spouses, but it’s also possible if your partner has a job that provides benefits. For example, an entrepreneur might have health insurance offered as part of being self-employed.
If you’re in this situation and want to apply for coverage through them, the first step is getting the right information from their employer. This can include details about whether or not their plan offers family plans (and if so how much it will cost). It’s also helpful to know what documentation is required before applying—for example, some employers require proof of marriage before allowing both partners on one plan!
If you think this option could work for your family but aren’t sure where to start looking for answers or information about eligibility requirements and costs? Reach out today
Short-term health insurance
Short-term health insurance is temporary coverage that doesn’t meet the requirements for ACA plans. It can be purchased for up to one year, but there are restrictions on who can get it and how much you’ll pay:
- You must be younger than age 65.
- You have a pre-existing medical condition (you can buy short-term if you’ve had a gap in coverage). It’s also likely that your new coverage will be more expensive if you have an ongoing condition such as asthma or diabetes—although some policies offer better rates if they know about your specific conditions ahead of time.
Short-term health insurance is ideal for people who are between jobs, who need something to bridge them until their COBRA expires or other life changes occur that make it possible for them to return to work full time and qualify for long term care through their employer’s group plan (or Marketplace).
Health insurance through COBRA
COBRA is a federal law that requires employers with 20 or more employees to offer health insurance coverage to eligible employees who lose their jobs. The COBRA acronym stands for Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, which was passed by Congress in 1986 to help people maintain group health care coverage when they leave an employer’s plan. COBRA allows you to continue your employer-sponsored health insurance for up to 18 months after you leave the company, but it comes at a cost: You must pay the full premium. Also, if you’re offered COBRA and decline it within 30 days of being laid off or terminated from your job, then there are penalties: Your former employer may be allowed to terminate you from their internal retirement and severance benefit plans (and some states have laws that require employers do this).
Health insurance through Medicaid
Medicaid is a government-funded health insurance program that covers low-income individuals and families. Medicaid is available to people who meet certain income requirements. It can be used for services such as doctor visits, hospital care, prescription drugs, vision care and dental care. To apply for Medicaid benefits, you will need to fill out an application form and submit it to your state agency responsible for administering Medicaid programs in your area (this could be called something different depending on what state you live in).
Get health insurance through Medicaid expansion.
The most common form of government health insurance is Medicaid. It’s a program that helps people with limited income get access to health care, and it’s usually free or very low cost.
To qualify for Medicaid expansion, you must meet certain requirements:
- Your annual income must be less than 138% of the federal poverty level (FPL). For example, if you live in a state where the FPL is $12,140 per year (as of 2019), your household income cannot exceed $16,753 per year ($15/hour full-time job x 40 hours per week x 52 weeks = $31,888 / 12 months = $1,771 / month x 12 months = $18,924 / half year; divide by 2 because there are two halves to each year)
- You cannot be eligible for other types of public coverage such as Medicare or a Veterans Affairs program; however if you are pregnant or disabled then you may still qualify even if you have Medicare or VA coverage
Find health insurance through private insurance exchanges and brokers.
- Find health insurance through private insurance exchanges and brokers.
- Use a broker to help you compare plans and prices, sign up for a plan, understand your plan, and file claims.
- A broker can answer questions about coverage details like deductibles or copays.
Search for health insurance through the federal and your state marketplace.
One of the best ways to get health insurance without a job is by searching for health insurance through the marketplace. The marketplace helps you find and compare plans that suit your needs and budget.
The federal government site will give you an estimate based on age, income, family size and location. It also offers information about prescription drug coverage, mental health services and other benefits available with some plans.
You can also search for health insurance through private brokers or agents who may be able to help you find affordable coverage options even if you don’t qualify for subsidies on the federal exchange.
There are multiple ways to find health insurance outside of your job.
In the United States, health insurance is not a right, but rather a privilege that you must provide for yourself. This means that if you don’t have access to employer-sponsored health insurance or another form of coverage, your only option may be to go without it altogether.
If you decide to take this route and go without coverage, there are some things you should know:
- You might end up paying more than $1 million in medical expenses over your lifetime! In fact, the average American adult spends around $100 every time they visit their doctor for an appointment or treatment—not including any prescriptions or tests that may need to be performed. Ouch!
- Uninsured patients are four times more likely than insured patients to die from preventable causes such as heart disease and cancer. One study found that uninsured people experienced 14% more deaths due to preventable illnesses than those who had private insurance plans.
There are many ways to find health insurance outside of your job. It all depends on your individual situation and needs. You should start by looking at what options are available for people in your situation, and then start researching which one best fits those needs. If you still have questions after doing some research, please contact us! We’re happy to help out in any way we can!