Medicare Insurance – The ABC’s

Get to know the ABC’s of Medicare. Learn the basics about Medicare coverage:

Medicare is the federally mandated insurance program for individuals 65 years of age and older. Simple, right? Not so fast – Medicare can be confusing, which is why we’re here to help.

Not only is Medicare for people 65 or older, but Medicare also provides coverage for some younger individuals with disabilities, and also people with permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a transplant.

Now that we know who’s covered, why are there so many “parts” (A, B,C, D) and what do they cover?

Medicare Part A

Also referred to as the Hospital Insurance portion of Medicare coverage, includes: hospital stays, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care and some home health care.

Medicare Part B

Is referred to as the Medical Insurance part of Medicare coverage. This term can be confusing, as “medical” can be broadly interpreted and, after all, aren’t all of these coverages considered medical expenses?

To clear things up a little, the term “medical insurance,’ as it related  to Medicare part B coverage, pertain to doctors’ services, outpatient care, medical supplies and preventative services.

Medicare Part C

Part C is referred to as the Medicare Advantage Plan and is a type of Medicare health plan offered by a private company, rather than the federal Medicare program/plan. The insurance companies that participate in the Medicare Advantage Plans contract with Medicare to provide all the benefits of both Part A and Part B in one plan.

Medicare Part D

Or prescription drug coverage, can be added to your standard Medicare plan.  Part D (prescription drug coverage) is offered by insurance companies and other private companies approved by Medicare.

Please note: Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C) as described above, may also offer prescription drug coverage that follows the same regulations as Medicare Prescription Drug Plans.

Gap Insurance for your Car

 

If you have a car loan, it’s advised that you purchase gap insurance coverage in the event your vehicle is totaled in an accident or stolen.  While your standard auto insurance policy will pay out for the amount the car is valued at, they will not pay out for money owed on the car loan. The amount valued will be determined by the actual cash value (ACV), which is equal to the cost of the car when it was new, minus depreciation, which factors in age, mileage, physical condition, etc.

Gap insurance essentially insures the remaining payments on your auto loan if your car is totaled. When purchasing a car at a dealership, if financing the purchase , it’s not uncommon for the dealer themselves to offer gap coverage.  While it is required in the state of Florida to obtain auto insurance, gap insurance is not required by the state; however, the financial institution you secure your auto loan with is permitted to require the purchase of gap coverage.

If you purchase gap insurance coverage through an automobile dealership, it’s likely you will be paying  more than if you were to add the gap coverage to your existing auto insurance policy.

Without gap insurance individuals can be left with no car, and a big bill to pay.  After just a year, the ACV of your car can be thousands of dollars less than what you paid for it, leaving you with an expensive loan balance.

For example:          

If the balance on your loan is $20,000 and the actual cash value of your car is $15,000, your insurance company will pay out $15,000 (minus your deductible), if your car is totaled or stolen.  This leaves you with an additional $5,000 owed for your car loan. The total payout with gap coverage would be the full amount owed on the car ($20,000) rather than the actual cash value.

Chip Williams and Associates joins McGriff-Williams Insurance

 3501 West University Avenue, Gainesville, FL 32607

Get Directions 

 

Local Agency for Florida Blue

We look forward to getting to know you – Give us a call at (352)371-7977, or email the Health Insurance Department at health@mcgriffwilliams.com
Click here to Meet the McGriff-Williams Team

 

McGriff-Williams Insurance, a leading independent insurance agency located in Gainesville, FL, is pleased to announce that Chip Williams & Associates has joined their agency. Chip Williams & Associates has primarily sold individual and group health insurance products in and around the North Central Florida for over 25 years.   The two companies will now operate under the McGriff-Williams Insurance name and will happily provide insurance for over 8,000 individuals and businesses.

Lee McGriff, co-founder of McGriff-Williams Insurance, stated, “We’re very excited about this opportunity and really feel like this puts us in a unique situation to help navigate customers through the insurance market.  With the complexity surrounding purchasing insurance products online, we’re excited to be the local source for individuals and businesses alike.”

The newly formed McGriff-Williams Insurance will operate out of the current McGriff-Williams office located at 3501 West University Avenue in Gainesville.  This change will not affect the status of any policies currently with McGriff-Williams or Chip Williams & Associates. 

About McGriff-Williams

Founded in 1983, McGriff-Williams Insurance is an independent insurance agency providing home, auto and business insurance products. As an independent agency, McGriff-Williams has access to many different insurance companies to find the best solution for each individual customer. Visit the Company History section of our website more information.

About Chip Williams & Associates

Chip Williams & Associates has an equally long standing in the area and has assisted in navigating Gainesville residents through the health insurance purchasing process. In addition to individual and group health insurance plans, Chip Williams also specialized in Medicare supplements.

2015 Health Insurance Open Enrollment

 

2015 Open Enrollment Dates – Mark your calendar!

Open enrollment for 2015 is fast approaching and there are some very important dates to put on your calendar if you would like to obtain health coverage for 2015.

October 1, 2014 – February 15, 2015

If you do NOT qualify for, or need a subsidy, and are under the age of 65 seeking health insurance  coverage for 2015, you may enroll earlier than standard open enrollment (November 15th).

 

October 15, 2014-December 7, 2014

Open enrollment for individuals seeking Medicare coverage.

 

November 15, 2014- February 15, 2015

Standard open enrollment for individuals under the age of 65, not seeking Medicare coverage.

 

Keep in mind, any coverages activated during this time do not take effect until the start of the new year (2015). If you register between the 1st and the 15th of the month, your coverage will not begin until the start of the following month. If you register between the 16th and the last of the month, your coverage starts the first day on the second month.

For example if you enroll January 16, 2015, your coverage will not begin until March 1, 2015. If you enroll January 1, 2015, your coverage will begin February 1, 2015.

Please note 2015 health insurance open enrollment dates are subject to change, as they did in 2014.

If you enrolled in a 2014 Marketplace plan, you can elect to either renew your coverage or explore other marketplace options during  the open enrollment period.

Confused about health insurance terms? Top 10 terms simplified

Confused about health insurance? Let us spell it out in PLAIN English.

Below is a list of the top 10 health insurance terms you need to know to understand your coverage.

  1. Allowed Limit: The maximum amount your insurance company will pay for medical services.
  2. Benefit: The amount your insurance company will pay for covered services (See #6 for definition of “covered services.”)
  3. Claim: A request from your provider (i.e. doctor, hospital, pharmacy, etc.) to your insurance company for payment toward medical services.
  4. Coinsurance: Coinsurance is the portion of payment for a covered health service that you, the insured, are responsible for. Coinsurance is calculated based on a percentage and usually comes into play after your deductible is met.
  5. Copay: This is usually collected by the provider (i.e. doctor, hospital, etc.) at the time of service and is a set dollar amount, or fee, paid by the insured for a covered service.
  6. Covered Services: “Covered services” is just that… health care services covered, or paid for by your health plan. Depending on your plan, the amount of coverage for service(s) may vary.
  7. Deductible: A fixed dollar amount paid by the insured prior to the insurance company paying for covered services.
  8. Exclusion: Services not covered by your health insurance plan or provider are known as exclusions. The cost of these services is paid for 100% out-of-pocket by the insured.
  9. Network: “In-network” facilities, providers and suppliers are contracted with your insurance company to provide medical services. By staying “in-network” you are likely to save more money. While you may be permitted to use an “out-of-network” provider, your health insurance company may provide less coverage, or none at all.
  10. Premium: The term “premium” refers to the cost of your health insurance plan for a set period of time, typically one year (unless you are purchasing a temporary plan).

We know health insurance can be confusing, which is why we have defined the industry terms listed above to help you better understand your health insurance coverage.