Happy health rebate month!
Don't toss that envelope. It might contain a fat rebate check from your health insurance company.
This post comes from Jay MacDonald at partner site Bankrate.com.
It almost looked like junk mail. If I hadn't already been writing for months about a stealthy little health care reform perk known as the medical loss ratio rebate, I might have disposed of it unopened.
Instead, I ripped into it. Yes! A check for $803, no strings attached, courtesy of my now-former health insurance company.
I was one of approximately 12.8 million Americans who can expect to receive a whopping $1.1 billion in rebates from insurers who spent more on things like administrative costs and executive bonuses than the Affordable Care Act allows.
The medical loss ratio provision of the law, which kicked in last year, requires insurers who spend less than 80% of your premium dollars (85% for employer plans) directly on your health care to refund the difference to you every Aug. 1. (Post continues below video.)
Self-employed workers who purchase their own policies are most likely to receive a rebate. When rebates are sent to employers, some may choose to put them toward future premium costs rather than return them to their employees. The size and number of rebates are expected to drop as more insurers toe the line.
For many, the MLR sounded more like a professional accreditation or major league sport -- until the checks started arriving. While the accompanying consumer explanation did little to ignite Olympic fever about the MLR itself, 800 bucks out of the blue is certainly something to cheer about.
Well, sorta. The realization quickly follows that my big windfall was, after all, money the company required me to pay them so some senior executive could keep his winter home in Barbuda stocked with Glenfiddich. Which is why I fired them in favor of a competitor whose executives at least drink Bud Light. But I digress.
If you would like to spoil the will-I-get-one surprise (and avoid inadvertently tossing away your rebate with the fliers), simply log onto Healthcare.gov, enter your insurance company or state, and you'll find a list of insurers in your state, their MLR ratios and the average rebate, if any, that they owe their customers.
Rebates aside, the real beauty of the medical loss ratio is that it makes it easier to tell if your health insurance company is ripping you off.
I wish it had been around a year ago, before I loaned my former insurer $800.
More from Bankrate.com and MSN Money:
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
How on earth does an article about insurance refunds get comments about being lonely and posting HOT pics? geeezzzzzzz. After reading this article I expected to see in the comments that people were telling about their individual refunds not spammers telling about website to fine "the one" eeekkkkkkk
To all you insurance bashing morons… the premiums are high because the cost of care it high. Cost of care goes up 7% to 10% every year so the insurance to cover this care goes up. There are dozens of non-profit insurance companies and their premiums are just as expensive. Government is not the answer, it’s the problem. All the regulations and mandates to cover expenses that are not truly medically necessary. Imagine how expensive your car insurance would be if they were required to cover every shopping cart dent with no deductible, if they had to pay for tire rotations, break inspections, oil changes… The rates would double if not more. Grow up people. Get a clue. Stop drinking the media and government cool-aid .
scammed again 241
In Arizona the checks from Blue Cross have begun to go out, my daughter received her rebate last week
Nope. If you are covered by group insurance and your company receives a rebate, your company can give the rebate to the employees or keep it and put it towards future premiums.
Nope, I have recieved absolutely ZERO communication from my woefully inadequate
insurer UNITED HEALTH CARE.
It's funny. I was at my DR's office yesterday and she asked if my health Insurance
had changed. I replied: "No, Unfortunately." She smiled as if accepting and
acknowleding my frustration.
Sadly, both my employer and my health Insurer are keeping their funds under wraps.
I wonder what to expect? Apparently Zero at this point, but I'm sure they'll raise
my rates again after this takes hold. I still wonder why?? My rates increased
after this was passed but not in effect?
Thanks obamma, ya screwed me again
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