On top of the existing drama at my job, I recently found out that I’ll be losing all my benefits in May 2012. I can’t express how excited I was (sarcasm) to find out that there is yet ANOTHER downside to what I thought would be the best job in the universe. Honestly, I’m surprised we had benefits at all since we’re technically working as contractors. I hope to be long gone by next May, but I thought it would be worth my time to figure out what I need to replace and/or maintain if I can’t find another job before my benefits end.
Health insurance: I feel like I really haven’t had health coverage since I started with my current agency. The plans they offer have VERY high deductibles, limited coverage, and high copays. Luckily I have no health problems. However, as I learned when my dad needed open heart surgery unexpectedly at age 40, years of perfect health can disappear with one trip to the doctor. It’s important for me to maintain coverage just in case – a gap could leave me uninsurable in the future.
Car insurance: This isn’t related to my job, but it’s also important to keep adequate car insurance to protect myself in the event of an accident. A few years ago, I hit a deer going 40 mph – shouldn’t have been a big deal. Yet I ended up rolled over in a ditch with a totaled car. Which I was still making payments on. If I hadn’t been insured, I would have been stuck making payments on a ruined vehicle.
Renter’s insurance: Again, not tied to my job, but one payment I definitely don’t want to miss! So many renters fail to obtain coverage for their personal belongings, thinking the landlord’s homeowners policy will replace their stuff. As I learned from reading my dad’s policy on my house, though, that’s not the case. I have my own policy that will replace the major stuff I own, along with standard allowances for things like clothing. And the premium is only like $25 a month.
Disability insurance: I’ve noticed that a lot of young workers ignore short- and long-term disability when they choose benefits. These are SO important – if you are unable to work, these policies will pay a percentage of your income until you’re able to return. My employer provides long-term disability at no cost to us, but I am responsible for short-term. Again, my dad’s heart surgery taught me the value of being prepared for the unexpected.
Life insurance: My current policy sucks. It will pay out 2x my annual salary if I kick the bucket. Which, given the recent paycheck situation, probably wouldn’t be enough to pay for my burial. Whether or not I find another job, I need to get a life insurance quote to find additional coverage. That way I know my son will be provided for if anything happens to me.
Dental insurance: A few years ago, a dental cleaning revealed cavities for the first time in my life. Apparently I’ve been brushing too hard for years – so much that I brushed some of the enamel off my teeth, leaving them more vulnerable to cavities. I’m almost done with all my dental work, but I don’t want to risk having issues later and having them dismissed as preexisting.
Are you covered in case of emergency? What types of insurance have saved your butt in the past?