We all know that smoking is a nasty habit that has been undeniably linked to serious illnesses like emphysema, cancer, stroke, heart disease and more. By lighting up that cigarette, you’re increasing your risk of incurring costly healthcare expenses. Because of the disproportionate number of claims filed, insurance providers often charge smokers more for health insurance.
But aren’t insurers now banned from charging customers more for a pre-existing condition under the laws of the Affordable Care Act? Yes, but that mandate does not apply to smokers since the habit is self-inflicted and often leads to a higher rate of claims. In fact, smokers can expect to pay 15 to 20 percent higher than non-smokers. Smoking may also increase your home and life insurance rates as well.
However, it’s not all doom and gloom. If you decide to better your health by quitting the habit, you could be eligible for lower health insurance rates after two tobacco-free years. Some insurance providers even offer smoking cessation programs to help you help you make that leap.
While smokers on individual healthcare plans are likely to be faced with a higher rate, smokers on an employer-sponsored group plan may not be affected. But remember, if you lose your coverage through your job, the higher premium on your new individual plan may be quite a shock to your budget. The best way to lower your premium—and improve your overall wellness—is to quit smoking as soon as possible.
Do you have questions about health insurance? Our agents are happy to pass on the information you need to make an informed decision.
Get started today. Call Dain Insurance Agency at (909) 396-6746 for more information on Los Angeles health insurance.