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My goal is to provide the most affordable health insurance…

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My goal is to provide...
My goal is to provide the most affordable health insurance plan or health insurance alternative for freelance workers nationwide.The Affordable Care Act made members of Health Care Sharing Ministries (HCSMs) exempt from the individual mandate, so they didn't have to pay a penalty if they didn't pay for an additional type of insurance.Now that the individual mandate is being repealed, can I start a secular health care sharing organization that functions similarly to the HCSMs as a more affordable alternative to health insurance?Are there any legal gotchas I need to be aware of?
Submitted: 6 months ago.Category: Business Law
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Answered in 16 hours by:
12/27/2017
Business Lawyer: Law Educator, Esq., Attorney replied 6 months ago
Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 125,785
Experience: All corporate law, including non-profits and charitable fraternal organizations.
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Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only. Please feel free to ignore any phone service request, the expert does not send those unless asked by customer and they are sent by the site automatically.

You can start your own insurance co-operative, which is essentially what the healthcare sharing ministries are, but you face the same possible issues which is the potential of running out of money or having to charge so much or to get such a large pool that it becomes unmanageable or perhaps several individuals get so sick that they drain the plans. These are just same risks any such co-op would face.

You of course will need a local attorney to represent your program and you will need to consider having a bond in place to protect you in case something happens with the money in the pool, but these types of programs will likely become more and more common as non-profit entities.

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Customer reply replied 6 months ago
Thank you. What makes the HCSMs interesting to me is that fact that they're functionally "self-insured" - they don't need to purchase insurance from a separate third party carrier. Are you sure that I can start a self-insured co-op with any meaningful legal requirements or gotchas? This piece (http://www.heritage.org/health-care-reform/commentary/why-obamacare-co-ops-are-failing-rate-nearly-50) makes it sound like the co-ops which received loans in Obamacare were heavily regulated, though I'm not sure if the same regulations apply to new co-ops created now.
Business Lawyer: Law Educator, Esq., Attorney replied 6 months ago

Thank you for your reply.

While they are essentially self insured in that they have the pool of money from clients, you still have to have that money from participants in the bank. You get one accountant or CEO with sticky fingers and you lose the money and you are in big trouble, which is why a bond is necessary. You also have issues again of someone using way more than expected and leaving no more for anyone else.

So there are "gotchas" just not huge legal ones they are pretty much financial ones. The regulations on co-ops have not been changed, only the penalty for not having insurance has changed. They will still be regulated and still have risks with people pooling their money together and risking not having it available if they need it.

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