If the idea of buying health insurance for you or your family sounds confusing, enlisting the help of a health insurance or medical insurance broker might be a safe bet. What is a health insurance broker? In simple terms, a health insurance broker is someone who helps connect people looking to purchase insurance with health insurance companies. Health insurance brokers are in fact popular, as many people who are in need of health insurance use their services. People that are more likely to enlist the services of a health insurance broker are those that do not have access to employer-based insurance (those that are self-employed) and others with pre-existing conditions that may make it more difficult to get health insurance.
In many respects, the role of a health insurance broker almost mirrors that of a realtor. While a real estate agent helps the consumer find their dream home at an affordable price, in a similar vein, health insurance brokers work to find the most economical rates for health insurance for their clients. As soon as the health insurance broker is successful in their task, both the insurance company and the customer sign documents to legalize the health insurance purchase.
To many, health insurance brokers seem to only be on the side of the health insurance companies. This however, could not be less true, as health insurance brokers work to benefit the customer. As a health insurance broker, one of their main job tasks is to be knowledgeable of the different health insurance companies, and which are the best fit for their clients. Health insurance brokers can also be a great source of information about health insurance as they would be more privy about details in your health insurance plan– including information about monthly premiums, deductibles and copays and even information about how to file a claim– if you need to. It is even possible that your insurance broker may be paid a small sum for referring consumers– only in the event that the customer actually signs up for the service.
These payments that the health insurance broker receives are referred to as commissions. Health insurance brokers can receive the payment is a number of ways: the insurance company pays the commission, the customer themselves pay this fee, or even in some cases both the insurance company and the customer each paying towards the health broker’s commission. In the end, however, if the consumer is happy with their insurance and the insurance broker did a great job matching them to a health insurance plan, the consumer may see this fee as a well-deserved investment.
Health insurance brokers are required to be licensed, so fear not– they are on your side.