Temporary Health Insurance to Cover Insurance Gaps
Did you just graduate from college and you’re looking for that perfect grown-up job? Maybe you’re in between jobs and need something to cover a gap in insurance coverage. Perhaps, you decided to retire a few months shy of being eligible for Medicare.
Pennsylvania short term health insurance is valuable temporary health insurance that covers gaps in your coverage for these situations:
- Recently graduated from college
- Laid off or currently in between jobs - an alternative to COBRA
- Pending employer-sponsored health insurance coverage
- Turned 26 and lost coverage from parent’s insurance
- Retired, but not yet 65 or eligible for Medicare
How Long Should I Use Short Term Health Insurance?
Short term insurances should only be used as a temporary solution (between 1 to 12 months) and it’s important to note that they do have limitations. For example, short term insurance will not cover pre-existing conditions. If you have received treatment for a medical condition in the past few years and are looking at short term insurance because you have found yourself out of work, COBRA may be a better option. By purchasing a short term option, it may make you ineligible to utilize your COBRA benefits after the fact.
Short term health insurance plans do not meet the minimum requirements set by the Affordable Care Act, so you may be subject to a tax penalty at the end of the month if you do not seek additional insurance. You will also not be eligible for government financial assistance if needed. Short term insurance will not cover preventative care such as immunizations or physicals. It also does not cover injuries or illnesses that occur outside the United States.
The following carriers are available for short term options in Pennsylvania:
- Standard Security Life Insurance
- National Health Insurance Company
Pennsylvania Short Term Health Insurance FAQs
- Can I enroll in a short term insurance plan at anytime?
You can enroll in short term coverage whenever you find yourself having a lapse in health insurance coverage.
- Does short term insurance have a time limit?
Short term insurance plans do have a limit. The time limit for short term insurance is 1-12 months depending on varying state regulations.
- Can I be kicked off short term insurance?
If you have met the 12 month time limit for short term insurance, you may be forced off short term insurance completely or be auto enrolled into a another plan that provides appropriate insurance coverage.
- How long should I keep my short term insurance?
It is recommended that you use short-term insurance as a temporary solution between 1 to 12 months because of the associated costs and the coverage limitations. If you are able to find other insurance options that have better coverage and lower premiums and costs, we recommend using those options.
- What are the benefits of short term insurance?
The benefit of short term insurance is that it provides a relatively inexpensive option to cover short periods of time where you may be experiencing a lapse in health insurance coverage.
- What does short term insurance not cover?
Short term insurance does not cover pre-existing conditions, preventative care, or any other healthcare needs that may occur when not on United States soil.
- Is short term insurance the same as temporary insurance?
Yes, the phrase short term insurance is sometimes referred to as temporary insurance. Short term insurance (and temporary insurance) offers consumers a way to temporarily access certain health insurance benefits during times when they are unable to access other health care options.
- Do employers in Pennsylvania offer short term insurance?
No, employers in Pennsylvania do not offer short term insurance. If you are fired or let go from your employment, you will most likely be offered COBRA health insurance. Learn the difference between short term insurance and COBRA.
- What is the difference between short term insurance and COBRA?
Short term insurance is significantly less expensive than COBRA but covers fewer costs, such as vaccinations, physicals, or pregnancy. Whereas COBRA allows you the access to the exact health insurance plan that you had access to with your previous employer, but at a much higher cost.
- If I am let go or fired in Pennsylvania, will my employer offer me short term insurance?
No, your employer will not offer you short term health insurance, but will most likely offer you the opportunity to sign up for COBRA insurance. Learn the difference between short term insurance and COBRA.
- What information and documents should I have when I'm signing up for short term insurance?
When you are signing up for short term health insurance you will need to have proof of your annual income and residency status.
- Can I get short term insurance if I am recently divorced or widowed?
You could get short term insurance while pending the beginning of a new or updated insurance coverage window. Keep in mind that change in marriage status, i.e. divorce or being widowed, typically falls under the category of a qualifying life event and makes you eligible for a Special Enrollment window.
- How does short term insurance work with life events?
Short term may be a good way to tie you over while you wait for the beginning of a coverage window. Keep in mind that most major life events like marriage, birth of a child, change in employment fall under the category of a qualifying life event and thus you are eligible for a Special Enrollment window that allows you access to many different insurance options.
- Can I get Obamacare cost assistance with short term insurance?
Short term insurance does not meet the minimum health insurance coverage requirements of a qualified health plan as mandated by the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and you will be subject to a tax penalty. Additionally, because short term health insurance does not meet the minimum ACA requirement, it does not qualify for cost assistance.