How to Get Health Insurance if You’re Self Employed
Health Insurance | 10 Jan 2023
If you’re self-employed, getting health insurance can seem like a daunting task, but with the right resources and information, you can easily find a plan that fits your needs and budget.
As a self-employed individual, getting health insurance coverage can be challenging. However, there are options available for small business owners to find the care they need. Whether you’re looking for an individual plan or seeking coverage through the Healthcare Marketplace, there are plans available that can meet your needs. You can also deduct your premium as a business expense and find a plan that fits your budget.
Enrolling in a health insurance plan through the Healthcare Marketplace is an option for self-employed individuals such as freelancers, consultants, and independent contractors. However, if you have even one employee (excluding family members, owners or spouses) in your business, you may be eligible to use the SHOP Marketplace specifically for small businesses, which would allow you to offer coverage to yourself and your employees.
Don’t go without the important care you need, we’ll help you explore your options and find the right health insurance plan for you as a self-employed person.
Self-Employed Health Insurance Options
Being self-employed can come with the challenge of finding quality health insurance coverage. However, there are several options available for entrepreneurs, freelancers, and proprietors to secure their healthcare needs. Whether you are a solo worker or run a small business, these options can offer you the benefits of company-sponsored insurance without being an employee.
Individual Health Insurance: This option is for individuals who do not receive health insurance through an employer. Eligibility and premium costs depend on your medical history, location, and age.
Health Savings Account (HSA): If you are eligible for a High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP), you can enroll in an HSA, which is a tax-advantaged savings account that you can use to pay for qualifying medical expenses.
Marketplace Insurance:The Marketplace, also known as the Healthcare Exchange, provides health insurance options for individuals and small businesses. If you are self-employed, you can enroll through the Marketplace during open enrollment.
Professional Association Health Plans: If you belong to a professional association, you may be eligible for a group health insurance plan through the organization.
COBRA Continuation Coverage: If you were previously covered under a group health plan through an employer and are now self-employed, you may be eligible for COBRA coverage.
Each self-employed individual’s healthcare needs are unique, so it is important to consider all of your options and determine what is best for you. Whether you are a freelance worker, business owner, or entrepreneur, there are options available to help you secure the medical coverage you need.
The Healthcare Marketplace offers a unique opportunity for self-employed individuals to find affordable insurance coverage. By enrolling in a plan through the Marketplace, you may be able to lower your premium costs and find a plan that fits your budget.
Cost Assistance: Depending on your income, you may be eligible for cost assistance that can lower your monthly premium and out-of-pocket costs for your insurance plan.
Plan Comparison: The Marketplace makes it easy to compare different insurance plans and find the one that best meets your needs and budget.
Enrollment Periods: The Marketplace has set enrollment periods, which is the time when you can enroll in a plan or change your coverage. During open enrollment, you can compare and enroll in a plan that offers the coverage you need at a cost you can afford.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA): The ACA requires all insurance plans to offer a minimum level of coverage, known as essential health benefits, which can help you understand the coverage you are getting and the cost.
Whether you’re a solo worker or run a small business, finding affordable health insurance coverage can be a challenge. However, the Healthcare Marketplace can provide self-employed individuals with cost-saving opportunities and access to a variety of insurance plans. Take advantage of the annual open enrollment period or special enrollment periods, such as qualifying life events, and compare plans to find the one that is right for you.
Common Questions about Self-Employment Health Insurance
Self-employment often comes with a lot of questions, especially when it comes to health insurance. Understanding what options are available and how to enroll can be confusing. We will explore the most common questions about self-employment health insurance and provide you with the information you need to make informed decisions about your healthcare coverage.
Am I self-employed or an employer?
The distinction between being self-employed and an employer is important when it comes to health insurance. If you run a business that produces income and has no employees, you’re considered self-employed. You can buy health coverage through the individual Health Insurance Marketplace. You’re not considered an employer only because you hire independent contractors to do some work. “Employees” are generally workers whose income you report on a W-2 form at the end of the year.
If you are self-employed, you can enroll in a plan through the Marketplace as an individual. However, if you have even one employee (excluding family members, owners, or spouses), you may be considered a small business owner and be eligible to use the SHOP Marketplace.
What if I leave my job and become self-employed?
Leaving a job and becoming self-employed can be a big transition, especially when it comes to health insurance. While you may have been covered by an employer-sponsored plan, you’ll need to find alternative coverage once you become self-employed.
The Healthcare Marketplace is one option for those who are self-employed to find affordable insurance. You can compare different plans, enroll during open enrollment periods, and potentially receive cost assistance based on your income.
What if I’m self-employed and get a job that offers health insurance?
If you’re self-employed and take on a job that offers health insurance, it’s important to carefully evaluate your options. While employer-sponsored insurance can provide you with comprehensive coverage, it’s important to compare the cost and coverage of the new plan to your existing insurance. You may find that your new employer’s plan is a better fit, or you may prefer to continue your self-employed coverage.
If you enroll in your new employer’s plan, make sure to inform the Marketplace as your self-employed coverage may need to be terminated. To make the best decision for your healthcare needs, take the time to understand both options and weigh the benefits and costs of each. Cover Kansas health navigators can help you with this at no cost.
Getting Help with Self-Employed Health Insurance
Navigating the process of getting health insurance as a self-employed individual can be overwhelming. However, there are resources available to help you make informed decisions about your coverage. Here are some options to consider when looking for help with self-employed health insurance:
Healthcare Marketplace:The Marketplace is a great resource for self-employed individuals looking for affordable insurance. You can compare plans and enroll during open enrollment periods to find a plan that fits your needs and budget.
Cover Kansas:Cover Kansas is a network of certified health navigators who can help you enroll in Marketplace insurance coverage. Navigator services are completely free, they are located throughout the state of Kansas, and there are virtual navigators who can help you online.
Insurance Agents: Working with an insurance agent can be beneficial as they can help you understand your options, compare plans, and enroll in a plan that fits your needs.
Professional Organizations: Many professional organizations, such as trade associations or industry groups, offer group health insurance plans for their members. If you’re a member of one of these organizations, check to see if they offer a group plan.
Tax Professionals: If you’re self-employed, you may be eligible to deduct some or all of your health insurance premium on your tax return. A tax professional can help you understand the rules and ensure that you are taking advantage of all the tax benefits available to you.
No matter what your situation, there are resources available to help you understand your options, compare plans, and find affordable coverage. The key is to act promptly, research your options, and seek help if you need it. With the right insurance in place, you can feel confident that you and your family are protected, no matter what the future holds.
Cover Kansas Navigators are trained, unbiased individuals that can help you compare health insurance plans, assist you with the online application process, and provide answers to your Marketplace questions year-round. You can schedule a free appointment with a navigator by calling (866)826-8375 or using the online “Find a Navigator” tool.