How Long Can I Have a Short-Term Plan?
Before 2017, most short term plans were limited to 364 days of coverage. However, the Affordable Care Act restricted these plans to a coverage period of 90 days until 2018 when those restrictions were rolled back.
Once again, short-term medical insurance plans can provide coverage for up 364 days. On top of this, subscribers can renew their coverage for another two years. However, the plan’s coverage can’t exceed 36 months.
What Are The Disadvantages of Short-Term Coverage?
Because temporary plans are cheaper, they often cover fewer benefits. They also have a tricky relationship with federal and state regulations. Not every state allows for short-term plans, and some states regulate the length of coverage more strictly than the federal government.
Above all, because these plans aren’t required to guarantee the same coverage as ACA plans, there’s a chance you may be denied benefits. Another major disadvantage of short-term plans is they don’t cover pre-existing conditions.
Finally, depending on your state, you may still have to pay ACA-related tax penalties. However, as of January 31, 2019, the federal tax penalty no longer applies to non-minimal essential coverage plans.
Short-Term Versus Long-Term Health Insurance
The first difference between these types of plans is how long coverage lasts. As we mentioned, with the right conditions, short-term medical plans can only last up to 36 months. Long term medical plans last for the duration of your plan’s terms.
Besides the difference in duration, there are many other differences.
Short term plans have a few immediate disqualifying factors. If you’re pregnant, overweight, have HIV or AIDS, are currently insured, or are not a U.S. citizen you will not qualify for short term health insurance. Depending on your state, there may be other pre-existing health conditions that prevent eligibility.
Additionally, if you qualify for Medicaid, you will not be eligible for a short term plan.
On the other hand, long term plans have fewer restrictions. But it will depend on the plan you’re shopping for and which state you live in. If you have questions about whether or not you qualify for a temporary health insurance plan, call a Buffalo Health Advisor.
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|Short-Term Plan Coverage Includes: ||Long-Term Plan Coverage Includes: |
|Doctor’s Appointments ||Doctor’s Appointments |
|Emergency Room Visits ||Emergency Room Visits |
|Emergency Care ||Emergency Care |
|X-Rays ||X-Rays |
|Some Prescription Drugs ||Certain Prescription Drugs |
|X ||Maternity Care |
|X ||Optical Care |
|X ||Chiropractic Care |
|X ||Preventative Care |
As you can see, long-term insurance plans provide more options in terms of coverage. However, you have to wait for an open enrollment period in order to apply.
Typically, short-term plans have much lower premiums, as well as options for coinsurance. In contrast, long-term plans usually have much higher premiums. However, if you feel that a long-term health insurance plan is what you need, getting the help of a health insurance agent will help you simplify the application process and help you get the best deals.