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Monday madness checklist
Monday - 12/12/2011, 2:00am EST
No sweat, you've got until COB today. If you do nothing, or pick the wrong plan what's the worst that can happen? You pay an extra couple of thousand dollars in premiums or an extra $14,000 or so in out-of-pocket costs if 2012 is a bad medical year.
If you have done nothing, the plan you are in right now is the plan you will be in next year. That may be fine unless...
- Its premiums have skyrocketed (average increase this year is only 3.8 percent).
- Your favorite doctor is leaving your plan's network next month, or,
- You have a catastrophic event (illness or accident) next year that will force you to pay tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket until your insurance kicks in and takes over.
So what to do at this late date?
- Your agency may have subscribed to Checkbook's online service which, among other things, lists best-buys based on your family status, age, medical status, etc. To find out if your agency is on the list, click here.
- The Office of Personnel Management's health plan website is excellent. And free. You can look at plans, options and premiums. To view it, click here.
- Give yourself a pay raise — setup a pre-tax flexible spending account and consider a savings account funded by your health plan
- Looking for a checklist of best-buys according to Checkbook's editors.
- Should feds married to other feds get two self-only plans or family coverage?
- Are you potentially making a $14,000 mistake by focusing on premiums rather than catastrophic coverage?
Meantime, stay healthy and stay safe.
NEARLY USELESS FACTOID
By Jack Moore
A woman from Limerick County, Ireland, has been blocked by Facebook from listing her hometown on her online profile. The name of her town: Effin. The woman told BBC News that "so many Effin people around the world," would like to add their hometown to their profile. "I'm a proud Effin woman and I always will be an Effin woman," she added.
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