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Completely off top-domestic partner benefits

HI, my boyfriend's company offer's domestic partnership benefits to same sex and opposite sex couples who are not married. I no longer have benefits as I moved (in with the bf) and had to quit the job that gave them to me so we were looking into getting me onto his benefits mostly so i would have medical coverage. Well according to a woman in his HR department this is going to cost about $488 a month!!!!!!! I know domestic partner benefits can be taxed whereas spouse/dependent children coverage can't . . .but does this make sense? $500 seems a little high!!!!!! Sure we do talk about marriage in the future, but not yet. can anyone else confirm this isane cost? Or offer up a good health plan for individuals? Most of what i've found online requires a $1000 deductible every year before coverage starts. ouch. thanks for reading guys!

Thu. Aug 10, 1:03am

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my work doesn't even offer DP bennies :( but for my coverage for me & my daughter i pay $42.07/week (it was like $12/week w/o kid)

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 7:53 AM

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My company was TERRIBLE. I was paying 191/month as a single 23 year old. I decided to go out on my own and went back to the insurance company that I had been on for years with my family and knew was great. Even with no "benefit" and the most possible coverage I can get (more than I was getting with my company), it's still only 155/month. How can they get away with calling it a benefit if there is no benefit at all and you'd be better off going on your own?!?!

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 9:13 AM

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Health insurance costs have skyrocketed, and some states require you to have life insurance as well, and then depending on what other benefits they offer, that can raise the price as well.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 9:23 AM

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It also depends on the state. in NY they require insurance to cover almost everything under the sun, so your health insurance is going in part to cover IVF treatments for all the rich older women in NYC who put families on hold for their careers.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 9:37 AM

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we use aetna insurance where i work and it is 371 a month for me now, up from 255 last year. but it is worth it. i was hospitalized for 3 days before i had this insurance and with the 3 tests they gave me, which were basic, my total cost was over 25,000! i had to apply for financial assistance to even think about possibly paying that off! nightmare situation with healthcare costs in this country!

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 10:10 AM

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I think mine's about $200 a month for me, a healthy 23-year-old female, and if I had a spouse that was covered too, it'd be double. There's no DP coverage offered.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 10:27 AM

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That's about in line with most costs I've seen as a self-employed person. It's one of the reasons that I'm glad my hubby has a job with benefits now. Even with the company helping out, it's still about $200 a month to cover our family of three. Still, a LOT better than the $550 we were paying out of pocket when he was going to school. We are young as well, which would seem to make it lower, but they ding you if you are a woman of childbearing age.

It sounds like the company is just giving you the option of paying their costs as a DP, in the event that you can't get coverage on your own, which is a benefit for many people. Depending on where you live, many insurance companies don't want to deal with individuals at all.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 11:22 AM

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op here, thanks for all your comments guys . . . gah! health care in this country is so ridiculous and expensive! i'm looking for an individual plan to cover me in the meantime! confusing stuff!

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 12:52 PM

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please, please contirbute some info about individual health care coverage that you find!! thanks in advance! good luck!

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 1:18 PM

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I think it's unfair to put all the blame on insurance companies and on people needing fertility treatments -- there are some sectors of the healthcare system making out like BANDITS.

As an example, I switched jobs and then got sick before my new cards came in the mail (even though I was covered) so I had to pay for my antibiotic and then get reimbursed. I was prescribed amoxicillin, an old antibiotic that is cheap to make -- probably costs 5 cents a pill to manufacture. Yet it costs $4.50 per pill, generic, at the pharmacy. So I end up with 1$ worth of antibiotic for 90$ -- what a markup!

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 1:21 PM

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Yeah, when you buy prescription drugs, you're not just paying for those drugs, you're paying for the research for new drugs. Not that the pharmaceutical companies aren't making plenty of money, they are!

My migraine pills are $20 each.

If our entire healthcare system would shift to focusing on prevention, our healthcare would be a lot cheaper. As it is now, those of us who are healthy are paying for those who aren't, and there's not much financial incentive to keep yourself healthy.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 1:42 PM

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My dp and I pay about $180 a month to have the two of us covered on benefits through my company in MA. $500 sounds insanely high. It might be cheaper for you to go out on your own, even with the $1000 deductible (seeing as you'll be paying that amount within a few months just for the insurance at his work).

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 3:01 PM

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I recently took my son to the ER in Houston and I can see why medical costs are so high. I swear that half of the people in that ER will not pay their bill. Many claimed to not have IDs on them and probably 1/4 were homeless. Even the Dr that gave my son stitches said that they don't see half of the money they are supposed to and thats why medical costs have to be higher. They need to make up for lost money somehow

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 3:31 PM

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It sounds like your company is allowing you to purchase the insurance for your domestic partner, but is not subsidizing it. I checked into similar coverage for my boyfriend, through my employer, and those costs are about right. Basically the company is letting you purchase exactly what they purchase for employees for your partner, but they are not paying any portion of it. Provided your partner is relatively healthy it would probably be more cost effective to purchase individual coverage through your insurance agent.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 3:35 PM

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yeah, stealing services is like stealing products from a store-the prices all go up for the people who pay...meanwhile, health insurance policies are continuing to reduce/limit the coverage they provide.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 3:36 PM

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Domestic partner benefits at my company are $94 per pay period for Domestic partner and $160 domestic partner and children. Its the same price as other employees that cover their dependents.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 4:19 PM

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Well, it's a vicious cycle. Unemployed people and most of those employed without benefits can't afford primary care, so they go to the ER when they get sick. Care in the ER is more expensive than primary care in a Dr's office, and everyone else ends up paying for those that can't pay and costs go up, making the care even less affordable, making insurance more expensive for those of us that have it. If we put more emphasis on prevention and primary care, and made it possible for more people to have at least basic primary care (through more support for community health centers and public health, if nothing else), we'd have fewer ER visits and costs overall would go down.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 9:22 PM

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Let's not forget about dental health either! One of the top reasons the ER has visits is toothaches for children because their parent(s) can't afford the trip to the dentist.

Thursday, August 10, 2006, 11:13 PM

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Right...also an issue of the importance of preventative care - funding has been cut to most of the public health dentistry programs that provided free or low-cost dentistry to low-income communities.

Friday, August 11, 2006, 9:17 AM

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I'm a journalist writing a story about straight couples who are considering domestic partnerships. I'd love to hear your story. If you're interested, please contact me at cet2111@ Any help you can give is most appreciated.

Thursday, April 05, 2007, 7:09 PM

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Thank you everyone, you make me happy to live North of you :)

Thursday, April 05, 2007, 9:15 PM

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Just have to add a comment in favor of US Health care. I've lived outside of the US for most of the last 10 years and medical issues are my nightmare. Yes, US care is expensive (and definitely- shop around) but, I'd take US care over any other country's, any day!)

Friday, April 06, 2007, 2:20 AM

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OT- nationalized vs. private healthcare

After reading the "domestic partner benefits " thread and rather than getting off topic there, I would like to know if someone who lives in a country with socialized or national healthcare could comment on the quality of care that offers. I've lived in the US my whole life and while I see the vicious cycle of rising prices in the healthcare industry (and firsthand as I work in the pharmaceutical industry), I wonder if we switched to nationalized healthcare, would the quality of care plummet? Would the rich would still benefit anyway because they would afford to still get healthcare outside of the system? It seems like it might bring the availibility of healthcare up a notch for low income families, the quality down a few notches for middle income families and the cost up in taxes for everyone. I don't want to make this a political debate, but as I think this will be a debated issue in the next presidential election, I would like to hear what people in countries with nationalized healthcare think of it or if you reccommend it. Thank you for your comments.

Friday, April 06, 2007, 8:18 AM

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Sorry! meant to post the above comment on a new thread!

Friday, April 06, 2007, 8:19 AM

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DP benefits

I am 33 and my insurance is through my partners employer and we only pay about $180 a month for both of us and it is great insurance. $500 seems very high.


Thursday, April 12, 2007, 2:45 PM

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This is probably obvious to some and not to others... I hope you're thinking about company and personal shares of cost both. I work for a very large company that gets about the best rates possible for what it covers. Like most large companies, it's self-insured - meaning that the "insurance company" is an administrative provider, but my employer pays them the actual dollar amount of the employee "insurance" claims. My paystub shows a deduction of about $900 a year for self-plus-one coverage. The company pays an additional $9800 for us. That works out to about $445 per person per month. That's an average across all 100,000+ employees. The "insurance" company gets some fee for administration, and the remainder pays claims.
What I'm getting at, for those who may not know, is that how much the employer decides to kick in is totally up to them. If you are bearing most or all of the cost, it can look very high to someone who gets a large employer contribution, as I do.
Generally if you're quoted rates much below this for private insurance, it's in some plan that does "medical underwriting" meaning that applicants who look potentially costly are not accepted. This can bring the cost down quite a lot, which is fine if you qualify and not fine if they reject you.
Obviously, what's covered, deductibles, etc., also affects rates. Places with more extensive mandatory-coverage laws usually have higher rates as a result.

Thursday, April 12, 2007, 5:25 PM

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