October 31, 2010,
A.C. asks from Lewisville, TX on October 23, 2010
4 Wks Till My Son Is Born and My Husband Just Lost His Job....
I need some advice Moms! The situation is that I'm going to give birth in a few weeks and my husband just lost his job. His company says they stop health coverage the day employment is terminated. Maybe we get COBRA ? but can you add a new baby to COBRA?? Does anyone know what kind of state aid might be open to those in our situation? I really really don't want us to end up owing alot because we are not only paying for COBRA, but also for individual, personal insurance for our new baby. I don't know what we are eligible for, how to apply, etc..... I am confused, nervous and I hate not knowing what's going to happen. Suggestions?
M.H. answers from Dallas on October 24, 2010
Sorry to hear about your predicament.
In Texas, an employer cannot terminate your health insurance mid month. They can immediately notify your insurance carrier so that starting the next month, they are not liable for your husband's premium unless you guys elect to go on COBRA or the State Continuation Program. Being that October is not over yet... you still have insurance through the 31st.
Depending on the size of the employer you may qualify for COBRA or State Continuation. If it's a small business it will be under the State Continuation Program. Under either plan, your husband will get a subsidy for at least 9 months. It is for about 65% of the premium his company was paying for your family plan. At least for State Continuation, the insurance co. will not bill you directly, but rather the insurance company will bill his old employer and you guys will have to remit your portion to them. His former employer will then remit your premium along with theirs. You can continue COBRA/State Continuation longer than the 9 months, but you may not have a subsidy. The laws can change and extend the subsidy period. You'll have to stay informed thru your health insurance carrier. You should call your insurance company tomorrow and ask these questions:
A. Which Program you qualify for?
B. Which billing will apply? (Direct or thru former employer)
C. Will the new baby be covered upon birth? If not, what can you do?
D. What would be your subsidized premium?
E. How long will you get the subsidy?
F. What paperwork do you need to sign and your husband's employer so you may get started (if you so choose)? Can they please send it to you?
Best wishes and God bless!
L.M. answers from Dallas on October 23, 2010
Hope this helps:
A pregnant woman may receive Medicaid benefits during pregnancy and up to two months after birth if she meets certain income requirements.
MAXIMUM MONTHLY INCOME LIMITS
FOR HEALTH CARE BENEFITS PROGRAMS FOR WOMEN
Family Size Medicaid for Pregnant Women
For each additional person, add: $577 $577 $624
Now the problem is your current OB may not accept this type of Insurance. A lot of doctors have a maximum of Medicaid recipient patients they see at a time. It may be your best option considering how expensive COBRA is. When you are on a layoff and can’t find employment it is a lifesaver. You will only be covered 2 months after birth but your baby will still have coverage.
S.M. answers from Dallas on October 31, 2010
check with WIC (women infants and children) they may be able to help with medical care for the baby... and when I was a part they covered any child for the first 5 years. not sure what it is like now I used it 8-10 years ago. they will also help with food for you and your hubby (depending on family income, but if you are not working then it should help, and you can apply while pregnant, you don't have to wait for the baby to be born) you can Google the closest office to you
J.B. answers from Dallas on October 24, 2010
First, so sorry you going through this at this time.
Did your husband get an exit interview? Usually they tell you when you are eliglble for, ie cobra, and how much will cost. Did he get some kind of severance package? When my company filed bankrupcty and I was laid off, I was given a severance package (basically vacation left plus little more) and was also given an opportunity to do the Cobra. Do you work? If so, can you put your family on your insurance? When I was pregnant we paid the dr, hospital etc over time and by time we had baby did not have anything to pay.
Thoughts and prayers with yall during this tough time.