When it comes to health insurance, how do you know you are getting the best deal?
If your employer offers health insurance, it might seem natural to go with the company policy. But in the last decade, health insurance prices have skyrocketed, and company insurance can sometimes cost more and offer less than individual policies.
Comparing group and individual coverage can give you the greatest control over your health care.
How Group Insurance Works
A group policy requires splitting the cost of your premium with your employer. You may be able to choose between certain tiers of coverage, but the plans are ultimately hand-selected by your company. You can’t go outside of the providers or policies they’ve chosen, though you may be able to modify them in some cases.
Your health insurance contributions to a company plan aren’t liable for federal tax, and paying them pre-tax can lower your overall taxable income.
The types of coverage you’ll have access to vary widely by employer. Workplace health insurance tends to be significantly lower than individual plans, though it may not be suitable if you have preexisting conditions and require routine care or prescriptions.
What Are the Benefits of Individual Health Insurance?
If you choose your own policy, then you have complete control over what type of coverage you pay for and your provider. This includes how much your deductible is and whether you have access to specialists outside of your provider’s network.
Individual health insurance plans can give you access to coverage that might not be included in your employer-sponsored plan. If you want more access to benefits for preexisting conditions or special needs, then individual policies might be better for you than group policies.
Making the Call
Your employer can answer all the questions you have about health insurance. Have a discussion with them about all your potential benefits and drawbacks before deciding to purchase your own plan. You deserve to be informed about your healthcare. Learn as much as you can, and you’ll be able to choose the right type of coverage for you.