Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Self-promoting Agent Tricks

No, not that kind, this kind:

I was recently asked by a friend to help her colleague with his family's health insurance needs. The catch? He lives in Indiana, and I'm not licensed in the Hoosier State. I did offer to help him find a good, professional agent, and to help him double-check that the advice he was getting was sound.

One of the most wonderful blessings that's come from blogging here at IB has been the connections to many professional, knowledgeable agents in almost all 58 states, and I was able to help Chris find one near his hometown.

Now comes the self-aggrandizement part; I just received this email from Chris:

Hello Hank. I just wanted to say thanks for connecting us with the Van Vleet Agency here locally; they were very professional and helped us navigate all this!

There may be a nationwide crisis for people who are trying to separate in their minds the professional insurance people and the scammers that have arisen in even greater numbers since we are required by law to have insurance now, and things have gotten confusing and rates have gone up for many of us, so we are looking anywhere we can to find something that is now too good to be true. Many of them are obviously scams but after we said no thanks, then they keep calling and calling even though we tell them take us off your list, we are not interested, and they use different phone numbers so you cannot block them. When we finally found one we thought was good, I was too busy to research it and my wife believed their hype but the next day we found out it wasn't even insurance at all, it was a discount program, and we would have still been faced with a penalty for not having insurance. With the other plan we had before, we kept hearing from all the doctors in our area that they did not accept marketplace insurance plans. It is so bad that there is no point in trying to find out any reliable information online, because of the overwhelming prevalence of partial or misleading information. Even within the marketplace system there is only partial information.

Well it turns out that [the carrier we chose] is accepted by the doctors and hospital here either way, whether on- or off- marketplace, but we never would have known it without Jessica's help. And going to an off-marketplace plan with them has given us the potential of some benefits if we do decide to go out of network. We are going with a Silver HSA 4000 deductible which we likely will reach in a few months due to my wife's conditions and then we are fully covered for her and soon thereafter fully covered by the family, saving on taxes too up until the HSA contribution limit.

Thanks again for your part in helping us get this figured out!

Trust me, Chris, it was my pleasure.
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