Learn about the typical costs of family health insurance and find the plan that is right for both your family and budget.
Protecting your family’s health is important, but so is protecting your wallet from unexpected healthcare costs. It’s a smart idea to get family health insurance to not only keep your family healthy, but also your finances.
If a member of your family has a medical emergency, and they are uncovered, you could end up paying the hospital bills and various related costs all out of pocket, which could have the potential to break anyone’s bank.
Average cost of family health insurance premiums
An insurance premium is the monthly payment you make to stay enrolled with your insurance carrier. In 2018, the average cost per month for family health insurance was $1,168, according to our data from plans sold on our site.
Keep in mind that this number is an average and your premium can vary greatly depending on the size of your family, location, and level of coverage.
Average cost of family health insurance deductibles
Another cost that you can expect when enrolling in family coverage are deductibles. A deductible is the amount of money that you have to pay out-of-pocket for healthcare before your health insurance takes over payment. After you’ve reached this amount, your insurance will generally pay for the rest of any covered care that you receive for the rest of the year.
Unlike individual plans, you may have two deductibles with family health insurance: an individual deductible and a family deducible. This is not true for all plans though, so make sure to check your plan details before buying, and educate yourself about how deductibles work for your chosen plan.
You must reach either the individual or family deductible before your health insurance kicks in and starts paying toward care.
According to eHealth, family health insurance plans had an average deductible of about $8,232 in 2018.
Other costs you can expect with family health insurance
In addition to your premium and deductible, you can expect other costs with family health insurance such as copayments and coinsurance.
A copayment is a fixed amount that you pay for a covered service. A copayment may come into effect before or after you have reached your deductible.
Coinsurance is a percentage you pay for covered service after reaching your deductible. You can expect to pay coinsurance until you’ve reached your out-of-pocket maximum.
Out-of-pocket maximums are limits on how much money you can pay for coverage. Once you have reached your out-of-pocket limit your insurance will pay for 100% of the cost of your covered benefits for the rest of the coverage year.
Out-of-pocket maximums are crucial to help keep healthcare costs low, especially for large families.
Depending on what your household income is per year, you may qualify for government assistance to afford coverage for yourself and your family.
- ACA subsidies: The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly known as Obamacare, offers tax credits for those who make a certain percentage of the federal poverty line (FPL) and would otherwise have difficulties affording healthcare.
In general, you’ll get larger subsidies the lower your income and the larger your family.
- CHIP: The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is a federal-state effort to provide inexpensive or – in some cases – free health insurance for families with children.
In general, if you have children and make too much money to qualify for Medicaide but have an income below 200% you will qualify for CHIP.
- Other options: If you have at least a family of for and an income of less than $99,000 per year, you should qualify for some state or federal assistance as there are other state programs specifically for families who have a difficult time affording health insurance.
Short term health insurance plans are also a good option if you need to fill gaps in coverage quickly. Short term health insurance will not provide you with the same coverage as most major medical plans, but they are good if you find you and your family without coverage.
What to keep in mind while shopping for family health insurance
Costs of family health insurance will vary significantly depending on your circumstances and preferences. While there is no tax penalty for not having health insurance in 2019, it’s still important to get your family covered to protect yourself from unexpected healthcare costs which can cost your family large sums of money.
To find family coverage that’s right for your family and your budget, take a look at eHealth’s family plan options now.