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This Web site contains a compilation of more than a thousand consumer finance  columns written by Tony Novak from the 1980s through 2006, updated and reformatted for maximum usefulness today.  New material was added after 2010.

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Short term health insurance in New York for wife of citizen

originally posted: 11/22/2006  reposted: 2/18/2011 This post has not been recently reviewed or revised by the author and may be out of date. If in doubt, please send a new question or ask for an update.

Q: Recently I came to US as a wife of American citizen. Since I am not going to travel outside US all I need is short term health insurance in case of emergency (I am healthy 22 years old and I am eligible for Family Health Plus Insurance but it takes about 2 months for application process) but this type of insurance is not available in NY State where we live. Could you please tell me what type of insurance would you suggest in my case including maximum coverage and could you also explain what is “Annual Deductible?” (Is it what I have to pay annually if some medical service is required?) Also, what would be my maximum out-of-pocket expenses in a worst case scenario (which might require surgery, long hospital stay, etc)?

A: As you noted, it is easy to find health insurance in New York State even without U.S. citizenship. Unfortunately it is a slow enrollment process and the insurance is expensive relative to the lower cost options available in most states. Regular U.S. “short term medical insurance” is not available in New York State so the obvious solution is a short term international policy like “Liaison International” at . Most policies allow you to choose a deductible ranging from $0 to $5000. The deductible is the most significant factor affecting the cost of the insurance policy. A policy deductible is the amount you pay before the insurance takes over. In most cases you maximum out-of-pocket risk is the same as your deductible but some policies the worst case maximum out-of-pocket expense could be $1000 more than the deductible. A typical policy with a $100,000 maximum benefit and a $500 deductible would cost less than $100 per month and can be issued immediately on the same day that you apply.


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