Author Topic: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off  (Read 746 times)

Scotland2016

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ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« on: July 01, 2020, 01:58:14 PM »
Our school system announced school will be two days a week in the fall, but teachers are telling people the real plan is 100% remote learning. I work for a public university that is doing something similar, so I believe the rumors especially because our cases are going up. Without going into too many details, this is just too much for my family. We aren't quite FI, but we have enough to live off of for 15+ years. I am thinking about taking a year off to take some of the stress off of my husband. We can afford it, but my concern is health insurance because I have a preexisting condition and our current insurance is through my work.

Let's say SCOTUS hears arguments in Fall 2020. It's a controversial case, so we can expect a June 2021 opinion. If they overturn it, how long do you think people will have to find new health insurance? If it's overturned, am I screwed because I have a preexisting condition?

I was thinking about waiting to see how the election goes before resigning, but we are at maximum stress levels and stress is bad for my preexisting condition....

TheFrenchCat

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2020, 02:47:57 PM »
I don't have much advice, but I've heard the pre-existing condition part of the ACA is actually pretty popular.  I have one too, so I'm hoping if things go bad with SCOTUS that there will be enough pressure to pass at least something to reinstate that part. But it could be wishful thinking. 

It sounds wise to  me to try to wait and see and try to reduce stress as much as possible in other ways.  Is therapy an option?  My insurance in currently doing teletherapy with no copay, so maybe something to look into. 

Caoineag

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2020, 03:09:51 PM »
If you don't trust ACA plans, can you just use COBRA? Basically you could use your employer health insurance for up to 18 months. We did COBRA at the start of FIRE because I wanted to continue my current health plan as my deductible was partially used and I wasn't sure if I would need another surgery (thankfully not).

firestarter2018

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2020, 04:54:44 PM »
You are wise to be thinking ahead, but I actually think you/we should be fine. I think it is very unlikely that they will overturn the ACA, especially since the crux of the issue was the mandate, which has since been repealed.  If they do overturn the ACA, I believe that any replacement will have to include a ban on considering pre-existing conditions, as this is incredibly popular across the political spectrum. If they allowed insurers to discriminate against those with pre-existing conditions, I truly think there would be a mass revolt and many groups would organize to get Congress to pass legislation to fix it.  Finally, if all else fails and they do repeal the ACA and don't put anything in its place, they have to give insurers lead time to unwind their current plan offerings, which in my estimate would be at least 2-3 years (since plans for the next year are always designed/negotiated during the current year).  So I think you will be safe, and in the event that you needed new insurance, you would have plenty of time to find a new job that offered it.

I am not looking forward to school starting if the decision is mostly or all remote. We're not quite in the position for one of us to stop working since we will be buying a house next year and will need to show stable income, but I am hoping I can request an altered work schedule that will let allow my husband and me to juggle the remote learning and getting our own work done, albeit in a more sporadic fashion.  It's just a no-win scenario for working parents with kids.

Scotland2016

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2020, 05:18:15 PM »
It sounds wise to  me to try to wait and see and try to reduce stress as much as possible in other ways.  Is therapy an option?  My insurance in currently doing teletherapy with no copay, so maybe something to look into.

Thank you! I've been in therapy before, but this is not something therapy can help with. There is only so much one can take.

Scotland2016

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2020, 05:18:47 PM »
If you don't trust ACA plans, can you just use COBRA? Basically you could use your employer health insurance for up to 18 months. We did COBRA at the start of FIRE because I wanted to continue my current health plan as my deductible was partially used and I wasn't sure if I would need another surgery (thankfully not).

Good suggestion! I will look into the price.

Scotland2016

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2020, 05:19:41 PM »
You are wise to be thinking ahead, but I actually think you/we should be fine. I think it is very unlikely that they will overturn the ACA, especially since the crux of the issue was the mandate, which has since been repealed.  If they do overturn the ACA, I believe that any replacement will have to include a ban on considering pre-existing conditions, as this is incredibly popular across the political spectrum. If they allowed insurers to discriminate against those with pre-existing conditions, I truly think there would be a mass revolt and many groups would organize to get Congress to pass legislation to fix it.  Finally, if all else fails and they do repeal the ACA and don't put anything in its place, they have to give insurers lead time to unwind their current plan offerings, which in my estimate would be at least 2-3 years (since plans for the next year are always designed/negotiated during the current year).  So I think you will be safe, and in the event that you needed new insurance, you would have plenty of time to find a new job that offered it.

I am not looking forward to school starting if the decision is mostly or all remote. We're not quite in the position for one of us to stop working since we will be buying a house next year and will need to show stable income, but I am hoping I can request an altered work schedule that will let allow my husband and me to juggle the remote learning and getting our own work done, albeit in a more sporadic fashion.  It's just a no-win scenario for working parents with kids.

Thank you, @firestarter2018! Your post was reassuring. I think so too, but this year has thrown so many curve-balls.

Annie101

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2020, 07:29:25 PM »
When will we have universal health care?!? Itís so annoying that we have to deal with this horrible system, but I hope you find a way to make it work.  Itís a great idea.  I am absolutely dreading the fall and angry that school probably wonít happen.  I have no idea how we will manage it.  We are planning a sabbatical in two years, but if we werenít I might try your idea also.

Paul der Krake

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Re: ACA, preexisting condition, taking a year off
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2020, 08:44:07 PM »
I left work in December without quite enough money to call myself FI, and enough shit on my health record that would very probably get me denied if we went back to pre-ACA days.

Coverage for preexisting conditions are immensely popular. If the Supreme Court somehow lost its mind and struck it down on an unpersuasive technicality, plans would be allowed to finish the year and likely the next, and the political fallout would be one for the ages, and Congress would whip something out reaaaaaal fast.

I'm not losing one minute's sleep over that.