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Thinking of quitting your job but fear losing health coverage? It does not have to be this way


Health insurance is a determining factor in deciding whether or not to leave a job. But there are three ways to continue to enjoy coverage after you resign.

By Sharon Epperson -

CNBC + Acorns

The rate of job resignations has increased at large organizations and small businesses, with more than 4.5 million workers leaving their jobs in November, according to the most recent data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

If you have recently left your company, or are planning to do so, here are your options to make sure you keep health insurance:

  • You can keep your job-based insurance policy through the federal Consolidated Omnibus Budget Act, or COBRA, which allows you to continue coverage for up to 18 months after you leave your employer.

  • You can buy a plan under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) through the health insurance marketplace.

  • Or you can switch to your spouse's or partner's plan, if possible.

“It's a three-pronged decision: spouse, ACA or COBRA

,” says certified financial planner Carolyn McClanahan, who began her career as a physician and later founded the financial firm Life Planning Partners in Jacksonville, Florida.

"It's important to weigh not only the cost of premiums, but also deductibles and copays and (the person's) underlying health status," says McClanahan, who is also a member of the chain's Council of Financial Advisors. cnbc news.

Experts invite you to compare the options to choose which one is best for you.Getty Images

According to experts, with COBRA you can keep the same health care providers, but you have to pay more for coverage.

Full fee may be required, up to 102% of plan cost.

On the other hand, a new government report shows that most consumers enrolled in ACA coverage on have deductibles of less than $1,000.

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Dr. Kyu Rhee, a primary care physician and medical director of Aetna CVS Health, said people should consider three things: "physicians, medications and diagnoses" before deciding on coverage.

“You have to weigh these elements to find those high-quality plans aligned with your providers in an area that is affordable for you and your family,” he said.

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Still undecided on which option to choose?

Be careful, time is a factor that can work against you.

If you're covered by a COBRA plan, you can't switch to an ACA plan until the next open enrollment season, which starts in the fall, McClanahan said.

The open enrollment season for 2022 ended on January 15 for coverage that will begin on February 1.

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However, if you missed the 2022 deadline, you can still get an ACA plan under certain conditions.

If you or someone in your household lost work-based coverage, or expects to, you may qualify for a "special enrollment period."

Visit for more information.

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If your COBRA coverage is ending or your COBRA costs change due to certain circumstances, you may also be entitled to a special enrollment period to make a change to an ACA plan.

Check your options on the health insurance marketplace, and “you can find a lower-cost plan that will allow you to keep the medical providers you want,” Rhee said.

Stick with COBRA

Do you want to continue your COBRA coverage or do you have to for now?

For people in that situation, Michael Gibney, a certified financial planner at Modera Wealth Management in Westwood, New Jersey, recommends an often-overlooked money-saving option.

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″(People) can use some of the money in their health savings account to pay for that COBRA premium, he said.

After leaving an employer, "if they have any money available in their HSA (health savings account), they can use it to pay the COBRA premium."

This article is part of the 

Invest in You Ready series.



 (Invest in you: Ready. Ready. Grow), an initiative of CNBC and Acorns, the micro-investing app.

NBC Universal and Comcast Ventures are investors in 



Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2022-01-20

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