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Health Insurance: Is your employer paying its part?

One of M’hijito’s good friends, a young newlywed who had just purchased a house, was sideswiped by a fifth-wheel while he was on his motorcycle. Because he was wearing a helmet, the young man survived. However, he’s lost a kidney and his spleen, and he broke three vertebrae. He’s still in the hospital, a very sick puppy indeed.

As you might surmise from the fact that he and his bride qualified for a mortgage in these tough times, he had a good job with good benefits. Or so he thought.

Well, come to find out: his employer was not paying the employer’s half of his health insurance premiums. That means he’s not covered. He’s now relying on the state’s half-baked indigent health-care system to keep him in the hospital until he recovers enough to roll home in a wheelchair. The bills the kid has racked up will ruin him and his wife financially just as they are beginning their life together.

Lawyers say the employer is apparently broke—this is why he was welching on the health insurance policy—and they hold out little hope of getting any blood out of that turnip. The kids probably will have to declare bankruptcy, and that won’t get them out from under a mortgage that likely requires two paychecks.

I have no idea how a young person in good health who generally stays away from doctors would find out whether an employer really is paying its part of the health-care premiums, especially if it’s a small business with no HR department. Probably you could call the insurance company and confirm that you’re still on its rolls. Given the nature of our deprecession, if you have no recent confirmation that you’re enrolled in your health plan, it might be a good idea to check.

And please. Stay off motorcycles!

Suzuki photo byRich Niewiroski Jr.

3 thoughts on “Health Insurance: Is your employer paying its part?”

  1. An insured should be able to use the phone number on his or her ID card to cal land verify coverage. This is what a doctor’s office will do before treating you.

    A company that is solvent is highly unlikely to withhold premiums in the manner mentioned above. However, when a business owner gets desparate he or she may try anything to keep his or her business afloat.

    If you are concerned about this issue, try calling the number on your insurance card to make sure that you are still covered.

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