When to Apply for Newborn Health Insurance
Congratulations! You are about to become a parent! In just a few, short months, you will hold a perfect bundle of joy in your arms. Your life will be forever changed in the best way possible. As new parents, you likely have a slew of questions. Some relate to how to parent in general. Others relate to what you need and when do you need it. The truth is, how to parent is relative (no pun intended). Everyone has their own ideas of parenting. Yet, there are specific answers to many questions concerning what you need for your new baby. One important thing that you need to consider is health insurance for your newborn.
After Birth Many parents want to have everything in place prior to the baby’s arrival. Buying furniture, toys, and even selecting a pediatrician can all be done before the child’s arrival, however, health insurance can only be purchased once the baby is born. There are many reasons for this. You cannot insure someone who is not here yet. The baby needs a social security number and a date of birth to be considered an insurable person. These items are not available until after birth. The second reason health insurance cannot be purchased prior to birth is because the insurance company must make sure there is someone to insure. As sad as it is to discuss, some babies do not make it into the world alive. No parent wants to think about this being a possibility. Yet, it is a reality. Therefore, insurance companies must make sure to wait until there is a living, breathing human being in order to issue a policy. As a result of these concerns and legal issues, insurance for newborns are issued once they are born, and not a moment sooner. Once a newborn is born, he or she is issued a social security number, and a date of birth is established. These pieces of information will provide a legal identity to offer to the insurance companies.
The Process It seems a bit overwhelming to have to handle legal issues after your baby arrives. Anyone who has ever had a baby will tell you all they want to do is love their new baby. And sleep. The last thing they want to do is deal with an insurance company. The good news is there is a process and you have time. Insurance companies know how new babies operate. You are on their schedule, not the other way around. This is the new way of life for at least three weeks until the baby adjusts to day and night. You, as a new parent, are lucky to have enough energy to make yourself a cup of coffee. The good news is that you have thirty days before your own health insurance stops covering your newborn. This does not mean to wait until the 30th day to submit your application. However, you do not have to submit it on day one either. Depending on how you are covered and the insurance company with which you work, you may have one to two weeks before you need to submit your newborn’s insurance application. If your insurance is provided by your employer, you likely have a benefit’s coordinator. Once your baby is born, you will want to contact your benefits coordinator. He or she can begin the process and get the baby covered on his or her own policy without much work on your part. The transition will be seamless. Your role will be to supply your newborn’s details and sign the proper paperwork.
On the other hand, if you are responsible for handling your insurance issues on your own, there is a bit more work for you. You must contact your insurance company sooner rather than later. Be prepared to have to wait on hold and have patience. Once your baby is 30 days old, he or she should have his or her own insurance policy. On day 31, your insurance policy will no longer cover the baby. However, your application should be submitted as close to birth as possible. This will allow you the opportunity to handle any issues which may occur and provide any requested documentation. The important thing to remember is that you have time to get this insurance underway. However, never wait until the last minute. Insurance paperwork takes time to process, and the policy must be active by the time the baby is 31 days old