What is the difference between primary and secondary health insurance coverage?

When insured individuals are covered by more than one health insurance policy, a distinction is made between primary and secondary coverage to prevent the insured from collecting a profit by cashing in on both policies. Primary coverage refers to that which is provided through the plan of which you are a member. Secondary coverage applies when you are also a dependent under another person's health plan. Secondary coverage kicks in once primary coverage has been fully spent.

What are the factors that would potentially increase the price of a health insurance policy?

1) Health History - a history of illness, pre-existing conditions 2) Occupation - higher than average risk of injury or illness 3) Number of individuals covered - whether coverage will be extended to spouses, children or other dependents 4) Age - older individuals require more care and file a higher number of claims than younger individuals 5) Lifestyle - participation in risky activities or an unhealthy lifestyle.

What is COBRA?

A Federal law granting the right of workers to extend their group health care plan for a specific amount of time after being laid off or having their hours reduced below the minimum number of required hours to qualify for the company health plan.

What limitations and exclusions are common in health plans?

Exclusions and limitations to look for in your health insurance plan include substance abuse, mental illness, suicide attempts, cosmetic surgery, optical coverage, dental coverage, prescriptions, services considered preventive care and Workers' Compensation reimbursements. Pre-existing conditions are often excluded from coverage. Pre-existing condition periods are often 6 months to 1 year prior to the beginning of your policy.