By Richard A. Eisenberg, CLUY, ChFC, CLTC of Eisenberg Associates
Health insurance options for nannies as they exist right now.
Everyone interested in health insurance has been following the national debate on health reform. Nannies have a special interest in the outcome, since almost all nannies that obtain health insurance purchase it as individual policies.
Regardless of the outcome on national health reform, it will be many years before those possible reforms take place. We need to review options for nannies as they exist right now. There are several states that have moved to guarantee issue. Those states are Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Maine, and Vermont. Connecticut has just passed new legislation.
What this means is that individuals can obtain health insurance without answering medical questions. There still could be restrictions on pre-existing conditions. However, eventually all pre-existing conditions are covered. In Massachusetts, pre-existing conditions are covered right away.
In the rest of the country, there is a choice between short term and permanent coverage. Short term never covers pre-existing conditions or routine checkups, but can be very inexpensive. Permanent plans need to be applied for and there can be exclusions or extra costs. Once obtained, any new conditions are covered. The cost is usually higher than short term plans.
So what should a nanny that is intersted in obtaining health insurance do? Since most nannies work in a place other than their permanent home, they should deal with a national insurance agency that understands the rules in all states. They need to understand all their options including what the employer is willing to do. It has become much more common for families to pay part or all of the cost of insurance for nannies. There might even be some tax advantages.
Richard Eisenberg is the principal of Eisenberg Associates and has been working with nannies since 1975. He and his staff can work with nannies across the country. He can be reached at (800) 777-5769 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here to take our survey for nannies about health insurance. The survey results will appear in the October 2009 issue of Be the Best Nanny Newsletter.
If you work as a nanny do you have health insurance?