Posts Tagged - ‘teachers’

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Stay Vigilant With Your Health Insurance Benefits

Monday, October 25th, 2010

Image: Mike Sansone under CC 3.0

If you have generous health insurance benefits provided by your employer, you may not think about it that often. For the most part, you choose the most affordable health insurance option that fits your needs during the open enrollment period and then run on autopilot.

Unfortunately, it seems that sticking your head in the sand isn’t good enough. Teachers in several school districts in New Jersey were recently uninsured for several months. A clerical error meant that although premiums were taken out of their paychecks, premiums were not paid to the insurers for four months.

Teachers in Newark still haven’t had their coverage restored. However, Paterson teachers are luckier–all covered expenses that occurred during that period will be paid for, and their coverage was reinstated.

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Alabama Teachers To Pay More For Health Insurance

Friday, May 7th, 2010

Image: thanker212 under CC 3.0

Historically, generous health insurance plans (with premiums paid mostly or fully by the employer–in this case the school boards) have been negotiated by labor unions. Often, they were agreed to in contracts in exchange for wage concessions. It’s the bargain typically struck by public sector employees: lower salaries than they may be able to get in the private sector, but more job security and better benefits, despite rising health care costs.

However, economic struggles have meant that many states have had to resort to budget cuts. Alabama is just one of them. Teachers in the state will now have to pay a higher percentage of their healthcare costs. If the Education Trust Fund didn’t decrease the level of Alabama health insurance benefits, jobs would have to be cut.

Employees will now pay $15 a month for coverage; still affordable health insurance, but far more than the $2 they used to pay monthly. The cost of covering dependents on their policy has also gone up: it is now $177 per month, up from $134. Their co-payments for will most likely increase as well.

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