Periods of transition can occur when you least expect them. Your company might go through a period of downsizing that results in your layoff. You could suffer a serious injury and become disabled. Your spouse could suddenly pass away, or your marriage could end in divorce. Fortunately, there are several options for continuing health insurance coverage that may be available to you during these transition periods.
In 1986, the federal government passed COBRA, a law that provides for (among other things) continued access to health insurance for people who lose their coverage due to termination of employment or a reduction in work hours, or certain other triggering events. In addition, state law may contain additional provisions.
In 1996, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) expanded on COBRA and made it easier to continue health-care coverage during transition periods.
In 2003, the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 created the health savings account (HSA), a tax-advantaged vehicle that permits individuals to save money that can be used to pay medical insurance policy premiums and certain uncovered medical expenses. These savings can help you weather transition periods.
What is an unemployment support network?
An unemployment support network is a group of people, organizations, or resources available to help you cope with issues that unemployed people must face. Setting up a support network when you're unemployed is important for several reasons. First, when you lose your job, your ego is likely to be damaged, and you'll benefit from the encouragement and perspective that talking to others can bring. Second, if you plan on returning to work, you may need help finding a new job or exploring a career change. Third, if you're an older unemployed worker thinking about retiring rather than seeking another job, you may need the advice of others who have experienced retirement firsthand. Whatever your reason for needing support, you can easily find it if you know where to look.
What is unemployment compensation?
Unemployment compensation (also called unemployment insurance) is a federal-state system of benefits that pays workers who are involuntarily unemployed a portion of their wages until they are able to find another job.
How is unemployment compensation funded?
Job loss can cause stress
Losing your job can exact an emotional toll on you and your family. Recognizing these emotions and dealing with them positively can go a long way toward helping you and your family cope with the stress that often follows a job loss.
What is it?
In the past, workers stayed with the same company for years and years, working their way up in the company. However, times have changed. Businesses facing hard economic times restructure, forcing employees to look for new jobs. It's also become common for workers to change jobs several times throughout their careers as they seek higher salaries and new professional opportunities. Whether you're forced to seek a new employment opportunity or are willingly doing so, you'll eventually be faced with an important decision: When you're offered a job, should you take it?
What is coping with unemployment?
Coping with unemployment means breaking away from the past and facing your future. It means dealing with the emotional, financial, and professional challenges unemployment can bring. Although this process can be painful, facing unemployment with a plan will help make coping with it easier.