Health Insurance Matter

charlie2003July 7, 2006

I'll try to briefly explain my dilemma.

I live in NYC. I buy my health insurance from a group rate plan from an agency I work for. I'm an independent contractor. They just called me last week (28th June) and said that the health insurance company is no longer qualifying contractors for their plan by the end of that month (June), leaving me without any health insurance as of 1st July. That just gave me one weekend of notice.

I've looked into purchasing some personal health insurance, however, for most you can't qualify until the following month. This leaves me without health insurance for a month......a huge worry for me. I'm healthy and in my early 30's if this matters any.

My questions are:

1) Shouldn't a health insurance company give more notice before such cancellations? Do I have any such rights?

2) Anybody know of any temporary insurance plans for just a month or a few weeks? Not as a traveller though.

Many Thanks,


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If you are healthy and in your 30s, what are the chances that you will need insurance in a month? A lot of people would take a chance and use some extra time to shop around for the best deal at the best rates. Don't be rushed into buying something that may not be the best plan for you. For example, a plan that offers ambulance coverage is usually not worth the extra premium because the chance of ever using it is slim. Some plans even cover organ transplants and overseas coverage. All with increased premiums. What are the chances of your needing a policy like that? You want a good basic policy with a decent deductible. The larger the deductible, the lower the monthly premium.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2006 at 11:03AM
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I guess I want something short-term in the meantime. Ever since I've lived in NYC, many unexpected things have happened. So, I find it really risky to not have any health insurance. I just want something in the interim until I find a good coverage for myself.

Any ideas?

I searched short-term medical coverages online however none were offered for NYC.

Thanks again,


    Bookmark   July 7, 2006 at 2:58PM
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I'd call your regular insurance agent. Mine was able to contact a colleague who found short-term (up to six months) coverage for me at a very reasonable rate while I looked for regular coverage.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2006 at 4:39PM
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Do you live in NYC? If so, would you be willing to share the contact information of your agent? Hope you don't mind me asking.

I actually don't have an agent as I went directly through the contract agency I work for. I've been calling different health insurance companies, but they don't seem to do anything that is immediately effective, only starting the next month, or short-term. Not sure if I'm looking in the right places.....

I appreciate your advice.


    Bookmark   July 9, 2006 at 10:07PM
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Not that this will help you - but this same thing happens to me every year or so and I work for a company that provides coverage. We are a small company with few employees. The Insurance provider waits until a week before the plan expires to notify us that they are raising the rates, cancelling the policies or whatever. Which leaves us in a lurch trying to get coverage at the last minute. I think they know how difficult they make it because they are hoping we will just buy their more expensive plan rather than endure the hassle of finding a new one.

Finding and keeping health insurance takes many man hours of phone time - this is why large companies have someone on the staff that does nothing but manage health insurance.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2006 at 9:56AM
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My son has coverage through UHC that he obtained from this site. He has a high deductible but a low monthly premium and figures the daily run of the mill stuff he can handle. This is good for major medical needs. He was covered in just a couple of days.

Here is a link that might be useful: online ins

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 1:41PM
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In response to Agnes,

A few years ago I woke up one morning and noticed that colors were not very vivid in my left eye. A couple hours later I noticed that my vision had suddenly become very blurry in that eye. By that evening I could not see bright lights with that eye and everything was gray and white --- no colors at all. I got an eye exam that night and was diagnosed with optic neuritis and probable multiple sclerosis. Two days later I had an MRI and found out I did not have MS, but had two brain tumor instead. One of them was wrapped around my carotid artery and pushing on my optic nerve, which is why I was almost totally blind in my eye by this time. I had brain surgery a few days later. This is why the OP does not need to be without health insurance even if she is young and healthy. I was too, until I woke up that morning.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2006 at 7:41PM
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Sorry I'm so late in responding but did not initially think of this until now.

You might check into COBRA -

I handle Medical Insurance where I work and when an employee leaves, they have the option of remaining on the current policy until they can find insurance elsewhere. Since you were being treated as an employee by the company you were dealing with, you might be able to qualify for
COBRA. Check with the HR person for your company and see if they can check into it for you. You will have to pay the full premium plus up to 10% for the company you are dealing with to handle the paperwork. This plan can be used up to 18 months and you will have the same coverage you have now. It will at least give you time to look into other options.


    Bookmark   July 28, 2006 at 12:43PM
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dlynn brings up a good point. Yes, doing without is a gamble, but so is crossing a street. My point is that you most likely have time to shop around and be careful in your selection.

However, since it's been just about a month since you were given the news, have you found suitable insurance for yourself yet?

    Bookmark   July 28, 2006 at 3:37PM
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