I’m 43, my domestic partner is 55 and we have a 15 year old child. Should we buy a family health insurance plan or get our own policies?
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Asked April 8, 2013
You will need to do some comparison shopping, both to keep your premiums low, and to decide the best method to insure your child. There are going to be situations where a family health insurance policy works well, but keeping the children separate from the parents has many benefits as well. But before you bring the children into the equation, you will need to find a company offering a policy that matches your spousal needs.
Health insurance is regulated by each state and every insurance company offers policies with different benefits and risk assessment methods. Some companies will offer you a policy based on the age of the youngest spouse, while others will offer policies based on the age of the older partner. Make a list of companies which offer the "younger spouse" type of policy, and then narrow the list down by considering the family options.
Different companies will offer different types of family plans, and that will affect the basic cost of the plan. For example, some family health insurance plans partially base your premiums on a family of four, while others will write policies for specific family sizes. If you plan to add another child, then a family plan may be the affordable alternative.
Family plans are almost always cheaper than buying individual health insurance plans for each person. Providing insurance to a small family group balances the risks for insurers, and reducing risk always equates to lower premiums. To find cheap insurance, use a website such as this one, which offers free online insurance quotes. It only takes a short amount of time and you can get an idea of what the policy is going to cost, compared between several leading insurance companies.
Before you choose an insurance company, be sure to check the financial rank of the company. Use the A.M. Best company website to view insurance company rankings, and choose a company which is rated highly. The A.M. Best Company uses an easy to understand rating scale, and you can quickly evaluate the financial stability of a company. In general, companies rated "A" and above are best, but there are also cases where the rating changes quickly, and a previously low rated company is upgraded to a more favorable status.
Answered April 8, 2013 by Anonymous