Over 8 Million Americans May Soon Get Checks From Their Health Insurers. Here's How Much You Could Get
- Private health insurers that fail to meet spending rules must pay back excess profits to policyholders.
- Over 8 million Americans will receive refund checks, ranging from around $78 to $155.
8.2 million Americans are owed rebate checks from private health insurance companies.
As we all adapt to paying higher costs for everyday living essentials, receiving any bit of extra money is welcome. Millions of Americans are due rebates through their health insurance companies, meaning they'll receive some extra cash soon. If you're set to receive a rebate check, it could boost your bank account balance.
The Affordable Care Act outlines rules that private health insurers must follow.
The Medical Loss Ratio (MLR) provision requires insurers that cover individuals and small businesses to spend at least 80% of their premium income on health care claims and quality improvements. Up to 20% can be spent on administration, marketing expenses, and profit.
For large group insurance plans, insurers must spend at least 85% of their premium income on health care claims and quality improvements, leaving up to 15% for administration, marketing expenses, and profit.
When private insurance companies don't meet these thresholds, they must issue refunds to policyholders. They must do so by September 30 of each year.
The MLR rebates are calculated based on a rolling three-year average. This year's rebates are calculated based on 2019, 2020, and 2021 financials.
Over 8 million Americans are due rebate checks in the coming weeks.
Private insurers are expected to pay $1 billion in rebates
Based on an analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation, an estimated 8.2 million Americans are due rebates, and health insurers are expected to pay a total of $1 billion to policyholders.
Are you wondering how much money could be coming your way? Not all check totals will be the same, and rebates can vary depending on plan type, insurer, and location.
Here is a breakdown of rebate check estimates:
- For individual health care plans, policyholders can expect an estimated refund of $141.
- For those part of a small group health care plan, each individual can expect an estimated refund of $155.
- For those part of a large group health care plan, each individual can expect an estimated refund of $78.
It's worth noting that insurers don't have to provide the rebate in the form of a check. They can send a rebate check or offer a premium credit.
Do you have a rebate check coming your way?
Your health insurance company will notify you if you're owed a rebate. You can reach out to your insurer directly if you have any questions. Keep in mind that exact rebate totals will vary -- so you may be owed less or more than the amounts listed above.
Health care premiums in the United States are incredibly costly, and many households struggle to pay this important expense. Getting a bit of money back may help to ease some of the frustrations that you feel regarding high healthcare costs.
How will you put the extra money to use? Some options include using the money to pay an unexpected bill or expense, paying off credit card debt, or adding additional funds to your emergency fund. Another option is to treat yourself to something you've been meaning to buy.
If you're looking to improve your financial situation, you're not alone. Check out our personal finance resources for tips.
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