Health Insurance Question

Updated on June 08, 2008
M.L. asks from Andover, MN
21 answers

I am thinking about changing to a different health insurance policy. Right now we have a HSA and it is working just fine. I just received a letter from the insurance company that my monthly premium is going up almost one hundred dollars per month. This means almost $600 per month. Does anyone have any good ideas for health insurance? My husband is self-employed. So we don't have the benefit of being on a big group plan.

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answers from Milwaukee on

I have had good luck as someone who used to be self-employed, with Golden Rule. You can access them on-line and find several different options.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Sioux City on

I would say to call Dave Nelson at ###-###-####. He works with the self employed and if anyone can get you a better deal, he can.

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answers from Minneapolis on is a good place to look at all different kinds of policies & deductibles. My husband is also self-employed & we found our medica plan through that website. We pay $375.00 per month & have a $3600.00 deductible- after that everything is covered 100%. We have 2 adults & 2 kids. I looked at a couple other places, it is all very expensive if you are self-employed. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Des Moines on

My husband is also self employed and we go through Farm Bureau. All you have to do is pay a $35 yearly fee and you can get signed up with them, so the rates you get are MUCH lower, since you are part of a large group. We have Wellmark Blue Cross/ Blue Shield and you can choose what plan you want.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

As a large family, the HSA plans are likely your best option because as a family you all share the deductible. Likely your individual plan does not charge for more than 3 children. You could see if there is a higher HSA deductible or if you currently have 100% coverage on your HSA you could look at 80% or 50% co-insurance plans instead. More out-of-pocket risk but possibly a premium savings.
As an independent agent myself, if you are not working with an independent health agent, talk to one who can look at Medica, BCBS, Assurant & Health Partners. These are our 4 major players in the state of MN. Compare deductibles, co-insurance options, networks, and premiums and see if you can do better. Without knowing your ages and deductible/co-insurance limits, I can't say if $600 is a good rate or not, but it might not be too bad with the size of your family. Health insurance is expensive and there is only so many changes you can make to get premiums down while still having coverage you find valuable.
D. Bijou J.



answers from Minneapolis on

I don't recommend Assurant as they are unclear on the things they cover. The coverage is mediocre at best. You can get better coverage for the same cost. I went through a small company called Edinburgh Financial and the agent sent me a list of various insurance policies in a spreadsheet so I could compare the basics. She answered any questions I had. I now carry Medica for myself and son (I'm employed part time and it was NOT cost effective for us to be added to my husbands insurance). We pay about $250.00 per month total (including DH's ins.). I also have a higher deductible, but the first 300 is covered for my preventative care. I don't recommend ehealth insurance, etc as the way to choose your coverage, because in my experience, they don't take the time to truly determine if it's the coverage you/want or need. It was more of a sales pitch-"I need your decision so I can lock in this great deal" (which it wasn't for us). It is a good way of pricing things so you have an idea of what you are looking at, but they don't list many details about the plans and they all end up looking the same. I can send you contact info for my agent if you are looking for someone in the Champlin/Brooklyn Park area.



answers from Minneapolis on


I work for a small company (only 12 of us) and our insurance agent is great (he's on his own - no big insurance company). He works with lots of very small businesses and sole proprietorships. I'm sure he could give you some inexpensive options. He has helped several of our employee's friends and family. He's very easy going and just wants to help people find the best, most affordable covergage. His name is David Cornell. Here's his contact info if you're interested:

David R. Cornell

###-###-#### work ph.

###-###-#### cell ph.

###-###-#### fax

CIS, Inc.

3570 Lexington Ave. North

Suite 300

St. Paul, MN 55126

It couldn't hurt to call - and it doesn't cost anything. You can tell him J. from ADG gave you his number.

Best of luck!!



answers from Minneapolis on

I don't have any advice for you as we are also struggling with this. My husband is also self employed. He signed us up for insurance last month, but I found out that we don't have maternity coverage and I would really like another child. I have been looking to change as well and there are so many different plans my head starts spinning. How do you like the HSA? I'm worried about that since we are not good at saving money. I just don't know anyone who actually has used a HSA.



answers from Minneapolis on

There are alternative health insurances through faith-based groups. They have strict requirements that you don't smoke or drink alcohol (or possibly, only light drinking allowed) but their costs are quite inexpensive. You have to go through a reimbursement process, by submitting your bills. This might be cheaper in the long run, if you don't go to the doctor frequently and are healthy generally. One such is called "Medi-Share" and you can find out about it at I haven't personally used this one, but one similar to it. Medi-share members cover each other's health care bills, pray for your family, send cards and letters of encouragement and have professional advisors to answer your questions regarding health issues. I would look them up, as I believe the monthly cost for a family your size would be significantly lower than the $600. a month. You may have to consider the cost of issues that come under non-covered items as a savings that your other monthly payments being so high would more than make up for in savings with this plan. You might need to create your own medical savings account for types of "co-pay" issues with this plan. I don't know the details, but you should research it.



answers from Minneapolis on

Have you checked out Minnesota Care? My dad is self employed and that's what we always had growing up.

C. H



answers from Minneapolis on

I'm not sure where you are located, but I sell insurance for my profession and own my own business doing so. I would take a look at maybe another health insurance company, or at a higher deductible. Sometimes, you can increase your deductible, but also change the coinsurance amount and come out paying less in the event of something catastrophic. If you would like to give me a call or email me offline, please feel free. You can reach me at ###-###-#### or

Hope that helps!




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answers from Des Moines on

For your kids I would check into Hawk-i. Depending on what your income is its a great plan for them. Then also depending on your income you can do Iowa Cares at Broadlawns. If you are in polk county. Other then that when I was looking I just looked up self pay health insurance and filled out some of the flyers they had on line. I did find this one that called me that would of been great. It was like 300 a month for health and dental, it worked like a group plan full of self employed people. That is how they got the group rate. My husband is self employed also and so we have to use my work insurance but my son is on Hawk-i. If you need any more info on either hawk-i you can pull right up on the internet, Iowa Cares I would be able to find the number if you needed it. I know some people think Broadlawns is not a nice hospital but it works well for its people. Iowa cares is a very good plan for people with limited income or big families.
D. A



answers from Minneapolis on

Try Minnesota Care. My husband was self employeed for years and when you work out of your house you can deduct more on your taxes. Part of your house payment, phone bill, electric, household items, etc. Get a good tax person and turn in all of your bill's and other deductions and the amount after all of that is your income. Then apply with that amount.



answers from Duluth on

The HSA is going to be your best bet in my opinion, they have the higher deductibles and the option to use the savings account option. Health coverage has become astronomical and I don't see it changing any time soon. $600 a month for a family is average. You can find companies out there that have no limit on how many kids you have. Find a company that offers full payment or reduced payment for routine checkups on everyone. It is a expensive necessary evil and if you don't have it, if something happened that is serious like cancer or heart problems it could be financially devistating to your family. Keep it. I am an insurance agent and see this happen. Take care.



answers from Des Moines on

What state do you live in? I live in Iowa and we have a heath insurance that is for kids only. It is NOT for low income families-its more for middle income. You pay no more than $20 a month, but usually it is free. I would recommend seeing if your state offers anything similar and if you qualify. Its great insurance too!



answers from Wausau on

Check into other companies and/or plans-rates are going down in certain areas of the country. If you like your current company, think about raising the deductible. Since you have an HSA, that money can help with your out of pocket expenses. Most of your routine, wellness care should already be offered to you without having to use your deductible. Call your insurance agent and have them look into this for you-that's their job. Take control of your health expenses and look at your bills just like you do with any other expense (car repairs, day care, etc.) Do you really need "cadillac" health care coverage or can you get by with a less expensive option?



answers from Sioux Falls on

Try Assurant health. I am also self-emp. and there is no real good options but. We have 4 kids and our ins. for the month is like 800.00 but we only have to meet 2 of the deductibles and everything is covered 100% after. And it has a good prescription benefits, also has 8 mil per person of coverage.



answers from Wausau on

You have children under 18 you could see if you can get state health insurance. They base it on your income, you also have to be without insurance for 3 months (here in Wisconsin). But a local social service worker can let you know if you qualify.



answers from Dubuque on


Have you looked into HAWK-I for your children? (It's for residents of Iowa) You may qualify based on income and number of children. My two children were on it for free, but some only have to pay $20 per month for it. It doesn't cover adults, tho. It may be worth looking into for the children. Maybe you could find a cheaper plan just for you and your husband?




answers from Minneapolis on

Hello, I self-pay insurance for my 3-year-old daughter and I go through am independent agency called "Health Insurance Mart." They are located in Scandia, MN (but you don't ever have to go there, it's just an app through the mail) and the phone number is ###-###-####. I chose a plan with HealthPartners and it's only $125/mo for my 3-year-old...the rates are very clear and it's just regular HealthPartners insurance. I believe you get better rates when there is more than one family member, too. I highly recommend seeing what they have to offer, they had the best plans when I was looking..good luck!

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