Friday, March 27, 2009

30-Day Economic Stability Challenge: More health group love

Yesterday's post on health insurance for the creative freelancer left me a little deflated. There might be one group there that might offer me better health insurance, but most of them were for New York City freelancers and therefore no use for me.

So what do you do if you don't live in New York and still want the warm embrace of group health insurance? Consider these options:

Your local Chamber of Commerce
I know most creative professionals think of chambers of commerce as a place for local restaurant owners, accountants and the owner of the biggest bowling alley in town--in other words, not our crowd.

But some chambers of commerce offer health coverage for sole proprietors and small businesses. All groups have dues, some of which are deductible, but you get the bonus of networking with professionals who could use a good writer or editor. Doesn't seem like a bad deal.

National Association of the Self-Employed (NASE)
Hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs belong to this group, which offers discounts on everything from roadside assistance costs to term life insurance. It offers health insurance through the MEGA Life and Health Insurance Company. But beware: There are red flags on this company at sites such as The Ripoff Report and Attorney Pages. I haven't been able to find any reports on this from legitimate news sources, and would love to hear if you have experience with this company denying claims in bad faith. If that's the case, I don't see the difference between having health insurance through them and the individual market.

I also received a call from a group called One Person Group, which offers group health coverage to self-employed and sole-proprietor professionals. It claims to be the first of its kind, and I'd love to hear if there are freelance writers who use it and how they like it.

Know of others? Leave them in the comments so other freelancers can benefit from your knowledge.

Photo by woodleywonderworks.

1 comment:

C. Steven Tucker, President SBIS said...

Heather, I have been fighting a 13 years crusade against the NASE (National Association for the Self Employed) and and the three Insurance companies that they act as a front for. Namely, Mega Life, Midwest National Life and the new name that both companies operate under - Health Markets.

The aforementioned companies have perpetrated gross fraud and malfeasance across and have left many innocent "insured's" with hundreds of thousands of dollars of unpaid claims. Finally, after a 2 and 1/2 year 29 State investigation, the NAIC (National Association of Insurance Commissioner) levied a $20,000,000 fine against the aforementioned companies. You can read about their sordid history and read the actual insurance conduct reports embedded in the same article here:

Most telling are the multiple comments located below the article that accurately reflect the public outrage against this organization. There are two other sources to visit regarding the NASE.

The first is the Stuart Law Group which is handling lawsuits against them from around the country. Their site is here:

And another site that was established by Chad Wach's. I found him on Twitter and he was so upset by how he was misled by Mega & NASE that he decided to start his own website warning others about them. His site is here:

You can also Google Mega and find thousands of reliable sources that can help protect the consumer against the NASE and the two companies they front for, Mega Life & Health & Midwest National Life.