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Finding a Trustworthy Agent or Broker

It is important to be alert to those who might take advantage of consumers searching for plans on the Health Insurance Marketplace. For more details about scams that have been noticed so far, read this article from the Washington Post.

Agents and brokers can offer individuals and businesses who are in need of a health plan a great deal of help. Not only can they sell plans, they can be excellent educators regarding health care reform. It’s important, however, to:

  • Find an agent or broker who is certified to sell on the Marketplace. Individuals and small businesses will benefit from the agent/broker’s more complete understanding of the Marketplace, and may be able to realize subsidies and/or tax credits via the Marketplace.
  • Be wary of anyone who requires an immediate turn-around, or who will not provide complete information about plans offered on, and off, of the Marketplace. Particularly for individuals and small businesses, comparison shopping between on- and off-Marketplace plans might reveal savings. Unless a significant Federal deadline is looming, consumers should not feel pressured to purchase a product.
  • Work with an agent/broker familiar with your market. For example, if you are searching for an individual plan, be sure that your agent/broker is familiar with individual products. Not all agents/brokers are familiar with the ins and outs of all product types.
  • Locate an agent/broker who is trustworthy. The National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) has a useful online tool to help consumers find agents in their area who have agreed to adhere to a consumer-oriented Code of Ethics. To try the tool, click here.

Questions or concerns about this, or any, topic related to health care?  Post them at www.MIHealthAnswers.com for a quick, reliable response.

This post was contributed by Shannon Saksewski (Health Education Program Manager, Detroit Regional Chamber).  Shannon can be contacted at ssaksewski@detroitchamber.com.