Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Open Enrollment Time is Coming!

Ah, insurance. For me it's one of those things that I know is important, but that I get a little overwhelmed diving into. I've learned from experience how important it is to plan ahead for the expenses that come with illness or injury, though - my credit score is still a mess from when I missed a lot of work back in 2009 due to health issues and quickly fell behind on bills as a result. Like a lot of people in the millennial age group, I don't have a lot of money set aside for an emergency. A recent study by Aflac found that 35% of millennials have less than $500 set aside for unexpected medical expenses. (You can read some of the other stats in their post about being One Emergency Away From Financial Disaster - It's pretty interesting!) If you don't have paid sick days available, missing a week of work plus medical expenses can add up super quickly!

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, my mom has been in the hospital this week. It's a little odd to be writing a post about preparing for unexpected medical costs when I'm kind of living it at the same time.  Speaking from current experience I can definitely say that dealing with the illness of yourself or a family member is scary and stressful enough without worrying about the financial side of things at the same time.

Looking forward to hanging out with my mom back at her house again, instead of the hospital/nursing home!

The 2nd round of open enrollment begins November 15th, so now is a good time to do some research on your benefit options! Even if you are already insured, you might want to consider a supplemental plan like those offered by Aflac. They offer plans that can help out with the expenses that can come with an accident or illness, such as child care or the bills that continue to show up even when you're unable to work. Nearly half of millennials surveyed said that they spent 30 minutes or less selecting their benefits last year. I spend way more time than that deciding which boots to buy for fall! A little extra time spent checking out your benefit options now to prepare for the open enrollment period could make life a lot easier if something unexpected does happen. There's no magical plan that's a perfect fit for everyone. Do your future self a favor and take the time to educate yourself about your options so that you're sure you're making the right choices for your life.  (I feel like I should end this post with some kind of "Knowledge is power!" graphic, or one of those "The more you know!" stars. I'll resist that urge, though.)

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

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