Archive for category insurance agent
High Deductible Health Plans, Health Savings Accounts and Future of Healthcare review by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Spring, Pearland, Conroe, Kingwood, Humble, Sealy, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Port Arthur
Posted by admin in baytown, beaumont, conroe, deductible, flexible spending arrangement, FSA, Galveston, HDHP, health, health insurance, health reimbursement arrangement, health savings account, high deductible, high deductible health plan, houston, HRA, HSA, Humble, insurance, insurance agent, katy, Kingwood, medical bills, medical debt, out of pocket, Pearland, Port Arthur, Sealy, Spring, sugarland, Tomball, woodlands on January 17, 2016
High Deductible Health Plans, Health Savings Accounts and Future of Healthcare
As we enter the changing world of healthcare insurance and High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP), it is critical for patients to understand policies which the United States Government has implemented to help protect employees. At the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI), the commitment to help patients remains the highest priority. As deductibles and maximum out of pocket expenses are increasing with high deductible health plans (HDHP), it is important for patients to understand Health Savings Accounts (HSA), Flexible Spending Arrangements (FSA), and Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRA). Without the full and proper understanding of these, patients might not be aware of how to continue to receive excellent healthcare, at an affordable price. In order for patients to receive the best healthcare possible, they must be well versed in the arrangements which the government has set in place to help them.
Patients who are enrolled in insurance plans with high deductibles, are undergoing fewer imaging studies, according to research performed by Kimberley Geissler, assistant professor of health policy and managementat the School of Public Health and Health Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. http://www.umass.edu/newsoffice/article/patients-high-health-insurance-deductibles In fact, according to the study, patients in these health plans undergo about 7.5 percent fewer diagnostic procedures including MRI, X-ray, and CT scans than patients with lower deductible plans. In this study, insurance plans with an annual deductible of at least $1,000 for individuals and $2,400 for families were considered high deductible.
High deductible plans are increasing in popularity due to the appeal of lower premium costs. Initially, the high deductible plans were felt to have lower costs, as far as patient premiums were concerned. The reality of these coverages occurred when it came time for patients to use the plans. Then, significant costs were incurred, as patients had to often meet high deductibles, before the benefits of the plans kicked in. Patients must understand how to utilize the opportunities of HSA, FSA and HRA accounts, to counteract this, and make the high deductibles and high maximum out of pocket expenses affordable.
The good news is that the Federal Government has implemented several programs to help protect patients, and shield them from some of the rising costs of healthcare. The three programs which will be discussed are 1) health savings accounts (HAS) , 2) health reimbursement accounts (HRA), and 3) flexible spending accounts. https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p969.pdf
- Health savings account (HRA) : According to the Federal Government, a health savings account (HAS) is a tax-exempt trust or custodial account which an employee can set up with a qualified HAS trustee to pay or reimburse certain medical expenses which they incur. The contributions remain in the employee’s account until they are used, and the interest or other earnings on the assets in the account are tax free. The HSA is “portable,” and remains with the employee if they change employers, or leave the workforce. To quality for an HSA, and employee must be covered under a high deductible health plan (HDHP). For 2015, the definition for an individual was a minimum annual deductible of $1,300 up to a maximum annual deductible and out of pocket expenses of $6,450. For a family, these numbers increase to $2,600 and $12,900, respectively. In 2015, the maximum contribution for individuals was $3,350, and $12,900 for families. Employees can receive tax-free distributions from their HSA to pay or be reimbursed for qualified medical expenses. It is not necessary to make distributions from the HSA each year, and the money which is in the HSA of the employee remain with that employee. Qualified medical expenses which are covered by the HSA are those expenses which would generally qualify for medical and dental expenses deduction. Medications are considered a qualified medical expense if it requires a prescription, or, in the case of an over the counter medicine, the employee receives a prescription for it.
- Flexible Spending Arrangement (FSA): A health flexible spending arrangement (FSA) is a program which allows employees to be reimbursed for medical expenses. They are typically funded through voluntary salary reductions, which are arranged with the employer. Contributions made to an FSA by an employer can be excluded from the employee’s gross income. There are no employment or federal income taxes deducted from the contributions. Employees can withdraw funds from the account to pay qualified medical expanses even if funds have not yet been placed in the account. Health FSA’s are employer established benefit plans, and may be offered with other employer-provided benefits as part of a cafeteria plan. For plans beginning after December 31, 2012, salary reductions contributions to an FSA cannot exceed $2,500 per year, or a lower amount if set by the plan. Money in the FSA which is not used by the end of the plan year is forfeited. Distributions from an FSA must be paid to reimburse for qualified medical expenses. An employee is entitled to receive the maximum amount of reimbursement at any time during a coverage period, regardless of the amount which had been already contributed. Payment might be made with debit cards, credit cards, and stored value cards given by the employer.
- Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA) : A health reimbursement arrangement (HRA) is funded solely by an employer, and cannot be paid through a voluntary salary reduction agreement on the part of the employee. With an HRA, employees are reimbursed tax free for qualified medical expenses, up to a maximum amount for the coverage period. Any unused amounts in the HRA can be carried forward to reimbursement in future years. There is no limit on the amount of money an employer may contribute to the HRA. Payment for qualified medical expenses are often made with debit cards, credit cards, and stored value cards.
The physicians and team at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute in Houston, TX, are committed to helping patients with their care. They have significant experience with helping patients protect themselves, and curb expenses, through the utilization of their Health Savings Accounts (HSA), Flexible Spending Arrangements (FSA), and Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRA). They understand that difficulty with finances can cause significant emotional stress on patients, and this effect is compounded when patients are already trying to heal recover from pain or other illnesses. Health insurance agents may also advise patients about HSA, FSA and HRA accounts.
The Kraus Back and Neck Institute treats patients in Houston, TX and the surrounding areas, including Pearland, Tomball, Katy, Sugarland, the Woodlands, Spring, Humble, Kingwood, Sealy, Conroe, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Galveston, and neighboring cities of Dallas, Ft. Worth, Austin and San Antonio.
Patients suffering from neck pain or lower back pain, and who seek expert advice, or a second opinion, or who have been told they may require a spine surgery, are welcome to schedule an appointment at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute:
……. Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT ONLINE
Keywords: high deductible health plan, HDHP, health savings account, HSA, flexible spending arrangement, FSA, health reimbursement arrangement, HRA, high deductible, deductible, health, out of pocket, Houston, Pearland, Tomball, Katy, Sugarland, the Woodlands, Spring, Humble, Kingwood, Sealy, Conroe, Baytown, Beaumont, Port Arthur, Galveston
Re-paying Medical and Legal Debt from an Accident review by KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Spring, Sugarland, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Kingwood
Posted by admin in accident, attorney, back pain, baytown, beaumont, car accident, car insurance, houston, houston personal injury lawyer, houston truck accident lawyer, injury, insurance agent, katy, medical bills, medical debt, motor vehicle accident, personal injury, personal injury lawyer, review, sports injury, sugarland, truck accident, truck accident lawyer, woodlands on April 18, 2015
Re-paying Medical and Legal Debt from an Accident
One of the most frightening and potentially most devastating aspects of a car accident / motor vehicle accident / truck accident is the medical and legal debt incurred by the parties involved, particularly if there are serious or life-threatening injuries. Medical debt can quickly spiral out of control in the United States, given that more people than ever before are without employer-based health insurance. Legal debt may not even register on the radar for many members of the public, but it is all-too-real for those who find themselves at fault for a car accident. An expert personal injury lawyer / personal injury attorney may be necessary.
What can individuals do if this is the case? Who will pay the bills? First, take stock of any injuries: are you experiencing back pain or other quality-of-life changes as a direct result of the car accident? If you are not experiencing back pain but are at-fault for the accident, what kinds of injuries has the other person sustained? Most law professionals agree that at this point, it’s best to consult a personal injury lawyer to minimize your chances of long-term financial obligation as a result of the accident. Personal injury lawyers will also likely be able to discuss in detail certain aspects of your car insurance policy that deal with payment of legal and medical fees after a car accident. That said, you should still read over your car insurance policy very carefully, particularly the sections dealing with accident compensation and legal claims filed against you by other parties. Knowing the gaps in your coverage will help you be better prepared to deal with repayment of legal debt.
For example, some states are “no fault” states when it comes to car accidents, meaning that the car insurance company will likely pay a substantial portion (and possibly all) medical bills incurred. Usually, however, the “no fault” limit is around $10,000, so hospital bills beyond that will need to be compensated for by the individual. Knowing the ins and outs of your company’s insurance policies will help you decide if you need additional coverage. Other insurance policies and additional coverage may cost more in the short-term, but if you have a high-risk job or do a lot of driving on high-risk roads, additional car insurance may make a lot of sense. This is yet another arena where a personal injury lawyer could be very helpful.
Patients with lingering or chronic back pain or other medical issues may complicate the issue further, necessitating additional medical consultation. Your car insurance policy likely has financial and chronological limits for your coverage. Your state may also NOT be a “no fault” state, meaning that in some cases all parties involved are responsible for their own medical and legal bills.
Physician experts at the Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston, TX, have significant experience and expertise in working with patients who have suffered motor vehicle accidents or truck accidents. Many of these patients will need complex medical care, and many will need to also see a personal injury attorney. After an injury, many patients may be confused as to what to do next, and how to straighten out their situations.
The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin
If you have SUFFERED AN INJURY, you can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at
……. Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online
……. KBNI VIDEO
Keywords: personal injury lawyer, back pain, car accident, accident, motor vehicle accident, car insurance, medical debt, medical bills, Houston, Woodlands, Sugarland, Spring, Katy, Pearland, Kingwood, Humble, Baytown, Beaumont, Galveston, Port Arthur, Memorial, Conroe, Sealy, Austin, San Antonio, Dallas
Truck Accident Car Accident Car Insurance Discussion KBNI Houston, Katy, Woodlands, Sugarland, Memorial
Posted by admin in back injury, back pain, baytown, beaumont, car accident, houston, houston personal injury lawyer, houston truck accident lawyer, injury, insurance agent, katy, lawyer, low back pain, motor vehicle accident, neck pain, personal injury, personal injury lawyer, review, spinal injury, sugarland, truck accident, truck accident lawyer, woodlands on June 9, 2014
Being involved in a truck accident or car accident can disturb everyday life, both medically and legally speaking. Not only does one need to worry about recovering physically, but the legal fallout following an accident (including personal lawsuits) often pushes families into debt and makes a full recovery much more difficult. Thankfully, there are several steps you can take to minimize your chances of harmful legal action after a car accident.
After you have checked yourself and other parties for injuries, you’ll want to document the entire truck accident or car accident as accurately as possible. When police arrive, get the name and badge identifying number of all police officers on the scene. Knowing about the officers will help all parties involved remember that they are accountable for the information they record and the actions they take. It will also help you if you need to contact the police department in the coming weeks in order to verify details on the police report. Take pictures of the scene itself, documenting any personal injuries as well as the damage done to any vehicles involved. If you are experiencing neck pain or low back pain (indicating back injury or a herniated disc ) or other injuries, be sure to have the police document that in the report. Record the addresses of all parties involved, as well as any other relevant contact information. Having the means to contact the other parties is important to facilitate quick communication if there are any legal consequences.
When it comes to discussing the car accident or truck accident itself, discuss details only with the police to avoid confrontation with other parties involved. You may be injured, angry, experiencing neck pain or low back pain or other symptoms, etc. This is not the right frame of mind to objectively describe an accident. Talk with the police, try to remain calm, and recount what happened as clearly and as accurately as possible.
In the coming weeks, talking to a personal injury lawyer ( who can deal with a truck accident or car accident) may be necessary depending on the extent of your injuries. Personal injury lawyers specialize in tort law, which deals primarily with civil wrongs and personal property / reputation / injury claims. Your injuries may give you grounds to seek compensation from the other parties involved in the accident. Your insurance agent will also be an extremely important source of information. Learn all you can about your insurance policy, including anything that pertains to the nature of your truck accident or car accident. Call your insurance agent and ask any questions you might have regarding policy or aspects of the documentation you do not understand. Your insurance agent may also be able to provide you with information on the best course of action moving forward, as well as recommendations for local personal injury lawyers.
The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX medically treats patients who have suffered from an injury, and may suffer from back pain or neck pain. Patients who have been injured recently or in the past can be evaluated. Physicians at the KBNI will evaluate the patients, and obtain appropriate imaging, including MRI scans, CT scans and X rays as needed.
The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX takes care of patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Memorial City and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.
If you have SUFFERED AN INJURY, you can contact the Kraus Back and Neck Institute at
……. Or visit www.SpineHealth.com to schedule an appointment online
……. KBNI VIDEO
Keywords: personal injury lawyer, back pain, car accident, insurance agent, Houston, Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center, TMC, Texas, TX, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin
This discussion is not meant to give legal or other advice, but is a discussion of things to keep in mind. For any advice about what to do regarding an accident, readers are advised to contact their attorney, insurance agent, and any other advisers they use. KBNI is not providing legal advice.