Tag Archive insurance cover

ET Wealth | Tricks played by loans salesmen

“Looking for a personal loan? For our appreciated purchasers, we have an unbelievably low-spirited pace of 9 %. Yes, that’s right, a flat 9% per annum.”This bait almost always manages to catch its prey. It is just one of the many ways our team of interactions managers ropes in customers. A personal loan at 9% may seem cheap but few customers realise that it is a flat rate of interest which is not the right way to gauge a credit with EMIs. Every EMI reduces the principal excellent. Therefore, such loans should be assessed on a shrink rate of interest.The reducing rate of interest works out to nearly 1.5 -2 occasions the flat rate of interest depending on the tenure of the lend. If the credit is for five years, a flat pace of eight% effectively works out to 15.7% on a reducing rate of interest( appreciate graphic ). Fortunately for us, very few customers understand this math. Just hang the carrot of a very low flat pace and the customer freely precipitates for it.Some purchasers are financially savvy and see through the ruse, though. They compare the EMI rather than the flat pace boasted by the relationship manager. Little do these purchasers is a well-known fact that the bank staff have other ruses up their sleeves. One all-time favourite is the loan processing fee. It is a small amount, usually 1-2% of the loan amount with a detonator of Rs 2,000 -3, 000, but these accusations can increase the effective rate of the loan.Invisible bars at workThe advance EMIs is another invisible bar that can push up the effective interest rate. It is a simple arithmetical subterfuge that abbreviates the net disbursed quantity by getting the customer to pay two EMIs in advance. The EMI of a loan of Rs 5 lakh at 14% for two years comes to Rs 24,000. If you offer two EMIs upfront, the net loan disbursed increases to Rs 4.52 lakh, though you are blamed for the full Rs 5 lakh.When taking a loan, purchasers are often so concerned about the disbursed sum that the payment of two EMIs doesn’t bother them too much. It should, because the upfront payment of two EMIs moves up the effective interest rate of the lend from 14% to 16.6%. We have some ready mixtures if a customer starts to question. Distract him by pointing out a shortcoming in the form, ask for an additional document or time talk about some other feature.For the same reasons, it is very necessary to build the credit application process very swift. We can’t give the customer read and understand the human rights clause in the lend substantiate. The terms and conditions are anyway printed in a very small font and purchasers are encouraged to quickly sign on the cross tagged on each expanse of the loan agreement and get over with it. When you do that, you effectively sign away your liberty to challenge the clauses in such documents. For example, the RBI has asked banks not to levy foreclosure commissions on hovering pace credits but there is not such restriction on fixed rate loans. The foreclosure charges are mentioned in the loan agreement but you wouldn’t have spoken them only if you signing without reading.Don’t fall for the flat rateHere’s how the rates can is different than a 5-year loan 7756113 2Bundled guarantee and half truthsWhen you take a loan, we make a commission. But we earn more if we sell an insurance policy. So, we slip in single-premium term proposes with home loan. The programme plasters the borrower and is paid the credit if something untoward happens to him. The premium payable gets added to the loan amount so the customer doesn’t have to pay from his pocket.This might reverberate very helpful, but isn’t a good impression. Such programmes are structured in a way that the death benefit progressively comes down as the borrower is paid the loan. A regular term scheme with annual premium payments, even though they are somewhat costlier, is a better idea than a single-premium insurance cover linked to a loan. Besides , nobody tells the borrower about a key clause in such programmes. If he forecloses the loan or alterations to another lender, the insurance contract dissolves. The fine print is really helpful here.Mind you, selling guarantee along with the home loan is perfectly law. The RBI permits a bank to protect its interests by insisting that the asset and the borrower are fully insured. However, this insurance can be purchased from elsewhere as well. A bank can’t insist that the customer buys the insurance from it. Mercifully for us , nobody is going to inform the customer about this rule.Promise the moon, but exclusively verballyCommissions are also fatter if we persuasion “youre going to” construct costlier obtains. The gondola salesmen are willing accomplice in this because selling a souped up variant of a bigger car fetches higher compensations. That’s why we slip in the bells and whistles, knowing fully well that you don’t truly needed here. But persuading a patron to waste more is not an easy task. We have to massage the pride of the purchasers with compliments about his good taste and stylish life-style. It cures if we honey the deal with add-on offers. Like an extended warranty on a Television set or additional roadside assistance envelop on a car.As we heap on the add-ons, a cardinal principle is never to give anything in writing. Verbal predicts handed out at the time of auction have no meaning once the transaction is done. You will realise last-minute that the extended certificate comes with a big asterisk saying provisions apply. The roadside succour piece may have already been built into the insurance policy sold by the dealership.There are times when we feel sorry for the customer. But such feelings rapidly overtake. How can one think about the interest of the customer when one has his own goals to achieve? Angels in comparisonAfter reading all this, you might think we are a rotten lot. Believe me, we can not simply even half even worse as some other people who offer credits and victimize you. Somebody striving a credit is obviously under monetary stress, peculiarly when Covid is playing havoc with jobs and incomes. But this doesn’t stop these fraudsters from cheating such parties. They will call you with a credit volunteer at very attractive proportions of interest. Once you is in agreement with make the lend, you will be asked to transfer the processing fee or file indictments to a bank account. If you do that, you will be asked for more coin on some other pretext. This will go on till you stop and ask for the loan to be disbursed. Then they will simply vanish.Another scam involves offering credits at 0% interest. Of track “theres anything” like a 0% credit and there is obviously a obscured payment. The catch is that you have to first buy an insurance policy from them, which will be kept with the lender as collateral. This is obviously a lie because an insurance policy without a paid up value is not worth anything. The thought is to sell you the insurance policy. Once you buy it, they will pretend to start processing the loan papers. As soon as the 30 -day free watch interval for returning the policy is over, almost everybody connected with the consider will stop taking your calls.Like I said, relation managers who push costly loans and useless commodities are angels in comparison to such fraudsters.With reports from Narendra Nathan .( Such articles is a fictionalised report based on interactions with monetary advisors and loan experts .)

Read more: economictimes.indiatimes.com

A guide to travel insurance for cruises

It’s not always smooth oceans when it comes to cruising.

As we’ve seen in recent weeks during the outbreak of the new coronavirus, even the best-laid plans for a cruise vacation can sometimes be thrown off course by an surprising event.

You might need to cancel a cruise in advance due to the sudden onset of an illness, such as COVID-1 9( the official name of the disease caused by the new coronavirus ). Or, maybe you fall ill during the cruise and need disaster medical tending. Maybe your flight to your send does canceled and you miss the vessel’s divergence. Or your carry is late arriving in port at the end of a journey and you miss your flight home.

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These sort of things can happen to cruisers, and they’re all the sort of situations where you might benefit from having travel insurance.

Note the word might. Travel insurance policies vary widely, and not every policy treats every type of event. That’s why it always pays to read the fine print in a programme before you are buying it. Know what you’re getting in advance.

What does proceed insurance cover when you cruise?

The normal pas insurance policy crosses a wide range of things that can go wrong in conjunction with a cruise trip — both before and during the sailing.

For starters, plans often will recoup you for the costs of canceling a sail due to a last-minute crisis. They also often will cover costs related to an interruption of a sail( maybe your send broken off, compelling “youre going to” fly dwelling midvoyage ). These two elements are known as trip cancellation and excursion stoppage coverage, and they are bundled into the ordinary proceed insurance policy.

Some programs too will shield out-of-pocket costs related to a flight slow or cancellation that results in you missing your cruise divergence( for instance, the cost of catching up to the ship at its next port ). Expenses related to baggage retardations and loss also often are covered.

Related: Cruise industry nears shutdown as major pipelines suspend runnings

But perhaps most importantly, countless passage insurance policies will deal medical expenditures you incur while on a sail. And some even will submerge the cost of evacuating you from a foreign destination if you are in the midst of a medical crisis.

Travel insurance giant Allianz Global Assistance reports that 53% of all cruise-related “billing reasons” for claims are because of illness for the insured person, while 14% are for an injury. Another 8% are for the illness of a family member, 4% for the death of a family member and 4% for the illness of a trip comrade, among other reasons.

(Photo by Rawpixel via Unsplash)About 14% of cruise-related insurance claims are due to injury.( Photo by Rawpixel via Unsplash)

Those percentages include illness and accidents that happen to cruisers just before a errand that make it impossible to travel. But, in many cases, such assertions are the result of illness and injuries that happen during voyages.

People often take risks during trip that they might not take back home, whether riding a plane ski, zipping around on a motorized scooter in a town they don’t know well or hiking unfamiliar field, ” James Page, elderly vice president and foreman administration officer of AIG Travel told The Stations Guy.

Some plans too cover the financial default of a proceed provider. In such cases, if your cruise order runs out of business before you sail, you could get all or at least part of your fund back.

Travel insurance policies don’t cover everything. For speciman, standard wander insurers generally will not reimburse you for the cost of a sail you cancel due to worries about an eruption of an illness such as the brand-new coronavirus. That’s true even if a U.S. government agency such as the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention( CDC) topics a recommendation that you don’t cruise, as they have done in the case of the new coronavirus outbreak.

Related: Avoiding outbreaks isn’t included as part of most travel insurance policies

If you demand the eventual opennes to cancel for such a reasonablenes or any other, you’ll want to look into more expensive cancel for any reason tour guarantee upgrade.

Where to find a traveling insurance policy for cruises

You can buy a advance insurance policy immediately from your cruise position when booking your trip-up, or through your travelling agent( if you’re using one, which often is a good idea when booking a sail ). You too can go directly to a third-party travel insurance provider or a travel-insurance aggregator site, such as InsureMyTrip.com or TravelInsurance.com.

Third-party insurance companies that specialize in writing travel insurance include AIG Travel, Allianz Travel Insurance, Travelex Insurance and American Express Travel Insurance.

Related: The Points Guy’s guide to the best travel insurance companies

One reason to use a expedition worker or a jaunt aggregator: They can help you find a plan that offers computed coverage specific to cruising.

“Many strategy now volunteer benefits that will exclusively appeal to cruise travelers, such as missed acquaintance, missed port-of-call and cruise disablement coverage, ” Stan Sandberg, cofounder of TravelInsurance.com, told TPG.

Missed acquaintance coverage refunds cruisers for a primed dollar amount if they need to rebook travel to catch up with their cruise at the next port. Missed port-of-call coverage liquidates a benefit if the ocean liner misses a scheduled port of call due to weather, a natural disaster or mechanical breakdown.

Cruise disablement coverage liquidates health benefits if the traveler is confined on a ship for more than five hours without supremacy, nutrient, ocean or restrooms.

As indicated, programmes vary widely. It’s a good meaning to compare plans, and make sure the one you buy has the elements that are most important to you. One size doesn’t fit all.

Consider what your credit card blankets

Some premium credit cards offer helpful excursion armours that is comparable to what you might get from a standard travel insurance plan. For sample, the travel insurance required when you pay for travel with select placards can refund you for expenditures if your belonging is impaired, you’re stranded overnight due to a flight wait or elimination or you have to return home to handle a family medical emergency.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve, for example, offers excursion slow repayment, outing elimination and stop assurance, emergency medical coverage and even medical evacuation coverage, among other benefits. And yes, cruise positions are considered common carriers just like airlines.

If you’re planning to rely on a credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve or The Platinum Card( r) from American Express( amongst other) for pas insurance, merely be sure to carefully recheck your card’s benefits and limits against regular pas insurance. And retain, you must pay for at least part — and sometimes all — of the jaunt with that credit cards to take advantage of its protections.

Related: The best credit cards for booking cruises

Find out if your credit card protection includes traveling coincidence coverage or spreads pre-existing medical conditions, as well as where reference is will compensate you back. Other questions to ask: What are the coverage restriction? Will you have to pay for a foreign infirmary money upfront and then seek reimbursement last-minute?

Be distrustful of cruise argument coverage

Cruise lines often expect shoppers booking a sail to buy the line’s own protection at the time of acquire. But if specifics about the coverage are lacking, ever ask the line for details in advance, scrutinize coverage benefits and limits and then compare those to one or two independent travel insurance policies, or your credit card’s insurance benefits.

Cruise line travel insurance policies sometimes have oddities. Numerous cruise corporations will exclusively give a wandering voucher or recognition for future use in the event of a embraced elimination , not an outright refund.

Also, business default may not be a clothed phenomenon in a sail line-sold policy. But it’s commonly are covered under plans from third-party hasten insurance companies.

Cruise line plans likewise can be more restrictive.

” Cruise cable policy seems to have become better and has more widespread coverage than in the past, but it frequently won’t cover air or pre- and post-travel[ organisations] unless those factors are bought through[ the line ],” said Debra Kerper, a Cruise Planners travel adviser from Carrollton, Texas, who bibles jaunt and sells private assurance.” This is when private insurance coverage becomes so very important .”

Related: The extreme steps cruise lines are taking as coronavirus spreads

How much does wander insurance for a sail cost?

Expect to pay anywhere from 4% to 8% of your total prepaid , nonrefundable outing overheads for a walk insurance policy. That’s a broad range, we know, but it indicates the wide range of topics of makes that are out there.

You’ll too find certain basic programmes that expenditure even less than 4% of your tour expenditures. Some super-premium schedules that cover just about any imaginable edition can expenditure as much as 12% of your junket expenses.

All reputable insurance companies will offer a “free-look period” during which you can receive a 100% refund on your payment. This allows you to review the policy you’ve selected and return it for any reason within the period allotted — frequently for a small administration fee under $10.

Under regular circumstances, you don’t need to purchase a so-called cancel for any reason policy unless “youve been” need the flexibility. The programmes are significantly more expensive.

You can receive a quote and obtain a program online in minutes with any credit card. Note that, although you may think travel insurance should code as “travel” when paid in respect of a credit card and thus be eligible for bonus levels on particular placards, that isn’t always the case. Your levels earnings will depend on the individual underwriter’s merchant code. When in doubt, expect that the acquire will fall under the insurance list for earnings.

Should I buy travelling coverage when booking a sail?

Whether or not you buy walk policy is a personal decision that will depend on a lot of factors. Would you be willing to assimilate the loss of having to cancel a sail on short notice due to an illness or accident? Could you afford an evacuation flight from a far-off port if you unexpectedly became seriously ill? Only you can answer those sort of questions.

Here, some thoughts that might help your decision 😛 TAGEND You might not be covered by regular medical guarantee while cruising

If you’re an American and traveling internationally( which will be the case for most cruises ), you may find that most private medical policy projects in the U.S. won’t encompas you.

In addition, Original Medicare only deals people traveling outside U.S. perimeters in limited circumstances.

While specific Medicare Supplement Plans do have some foreign emergency medical benefits , not all do. Be sure start fucking talking to your Medical Supplemental Plan provider to see if you’re embraced, what’s embraced, what the limits are and how the invoice is paid.

Also note that, in some countries, particularly in Central and South America, travelers may not be discharged from a hospital until their legislation is paid in full.

Plus, if you have a medical happen overseas, you could find yourself stuck in a shared hospital room without air conditioning or a private shower. The position of upkeep were not able to be what you expect.

“For parties traveling internationally, it’s crucial to know beforehand where to go for any treatment … and how they’re going to pay for that medicine, ” AIG Travel’s Page said.

Getting expelled for a medical health is expensive

Most airlines won’t admitted seriously ill passengers, those carrying bulky medical equipment or those necessitating a full medical team.

Even a low-cost weekend getaway on a cruise to the Bahamas out of Miami can turn costly if you suffer a serious coincidence or illness necessitating medical treatment or an emergency medical evacuation.

Being flown back to the U.S. from a far-flung overseas site in a private, medically-equipped aircraft, with health professionals medical team onboard, can run between $70,000 and $180,000, according to Mike Hallman, chairperson and CEO of Medjet, a medical shipping body company.

“Domestic vehicles, which we include as well, can expenditure upwards of $30,000, ” he said.

Without proof of medical evacuation coverage, foreign providers will likewise want that money upfront. Hallman says that, while regular jaunt assurance commonly will get you to an acceptable overseas infirmary and even to a higher-level care facility if “medically necessary, ” medical emptying coverage means you can fly home to your own hospital, doctors and family — without claim forms, expense detonators on shippings or startle bills.

The tandem approach — buying both roam assurance plus a separate medevac transport membership — is a good option, Hallman said.

“We always recommend pas coverage, as it coverings junket stop, “whats important”, as well as medical coverage for research hospitals and treatment penalties ,” he said.” We pick up where they leave off.”

You can’t predict the forecast

Cruising is a great way to explore multiple destinations in one trip. But it’s good to keep in mind that unexpected adjournments, stops or eliminations due to weather can happen during cruises, particularly during hurricane seasons in places such as the Caribbean and Asia( where typhoons are called cyclones ).

(Photo via Shutterstock)( Photo via Shutterstock)

During the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season( June 1 to Nov. 30) Allianz paid 6,238 says from customers whose travel plans in the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico and southeastern U.S. were impacted by the hurricanes, according to Daniel Durazo, chairman of communications and marketing for Allianz Global Assistance USA.

If you’re hoping to insure against a storm-related disaster, it’s good to buy walk assurance as soon as possible. Once a squall or typhoon is worded, it’s too late to buy travel insurance to cover it.

Of course, sail paths will move sends away from a forecast threat. But when the port line-up is adjusted, or the sail abridged, they might simply offer the guest an onboard credit, onboard offering or future sail approval, rather than any refund. It depended on circumstances for that specific voyage.

Related: Everything you need to know about cruising during typhoon season

Costs can prepare promptly when things go wrong

Even if the cruise pipeline does cater a full or partial refund or cruise credit for an itinerary change or some other interruption, travelers could have to swallow the cost of other advance parts not purchased through the line. That could include nonrefundable flights, prepaid resort or hotel nighttimes , nonrefundable tour fees and more.

Travel insurance can plow those, plus help with flight postponements or eliminations, baggage loss or theft.

If a wintertime cyclone motives you to miss your flight to where the vessels is boarding, “Travel insurance could help you get to the next port to join the cruise, so you don’t miss your entire trip, ” Page said.

In fact, 13% of “billing reasons” for claims to Allianz are for common carrier slows( such as a flight retardation ), while weather and natural disaster referred allegations account for about 3 %.

The government probably won’t bail you out

While cruise ships have medical facilities, they’re often not equipped to treat serious illness. If you knowledge a serious medical question on a ship, you may have to get off the ship in a foreign port to seek treatment at a hospital. In such a case, if you don’t have medical removal guarantee, you may then find yourself stranded in that port, acquiring you are required to a medical evacuation.

Don’t expect Uncle Sam to step in and help foot the bill.

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs is clear about the importance of buying wander insurance.

“The U.S. authority is not render medical guarantee for U.S. citizens overseas ,” the bureau says on the website.” We do not pay medical invoices. You should purchase coverage before you travel.”

CoronavirusIf you need to be treated for a medical emergency off-ship, the US government won’t pay your medical statutes.( Photo via Shutterstock) You may need increased assistance than you think

If you’re injured or becomes severely ill during a excursion, especially in a foreign country, it may be difficult to access help without the assistance of drilled professionals that comes with many guarantee plans.

Many travel insurance companies render around-the-clock assistance with situating overseas clinics and pharmacies; getting to a doctor or hospital; refilling lost or depleted prescriptions; assisting with up-front remittances to hospitals; and arranging flight reforms so you can get home.

Travel insurance companies likewise can format for an air ambulance, a wet-nurse escort, oxygen and a lie-flat seat on a flight residence if your medical statu authorizes it.

You want to be careful if you have pre-existing conditions

When you roam, it’s important to be fully considered, which makes having extensive medical coverage that includes any pre-existing conditions. Otherwise, if you leader into a doctor’s office overseas, have any experiments accomplished, or inspect an urgent attention center or emergency room, you might find you’re not covered.

Here, terming is extremely important. Cruisers endeavouring coverage of pre-existing conditions as well cancel for any reason insurance generally must book within seven to 21 dates of the first remittance they make for a trip-up. The timing many by insurer.

(Photo by Rawpixel via Unsplash)If you have a pre-existing condition, make sure your treated.( Photo by Rawpixel via Unsplash) Bottom row

Travel insurance isn’t for every cruiser — or even for every cruise. It’s not inexpensive. But it can bring a lot of peace of mind if you’re about to head out to sea. Do your homework, compare plans and always assess the risks.

Planning a cruise for 2020? Our guide to cruising starts now 😛 TAGEND

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Additional reporting by Susan J. Young.

Feature image by eugenesergeev/ Getty Images.

Read more: thepointsguy.com

How to Pay for Fertility Treatment

Deciding to start a family is a thrilling decision filled with happiness and dreams of the future, but adding a bundle of joy to the family doesn’t come easy for everyone. Having a baby can require medical intervention in some cases, with some people risking all they have or taking out a personal loan to make their family plans come true.

Couples today face a slew of obstacles standing in the way of conceiving naturally, including male infertility, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, prior surgeries and cancer diagnoses. Age is also a factor, as 50% of millennials delay starting a family to do things like pursue careers, focus on education and build financial stability.

However, insurance carriers don’t cover expenses unless there’s a proven fertility problem. Almost all of the couples seeking fertility preservation, or single mothers by choice, carry the financial burden of fertility treatments entirely by themselves.

Same sex couples also face unique challenges in their quest to bring new life into the world. Some LGBT families deal with medical infertility on top of the situational infertility that comes with being in a same sex couple. Transgender adults, for instance, risk permanently losing their fertility after starting hormone therapy or transitioning. As a solution, some couples consider alternatives to LGBT fertility clinics, such as adoption or surrogacy, to begin their family.

Fertility implications from radiation therapy, chemotherapy and surgery may also be serious considerations for some families looking to conceive. According to the latest data from World Cancer Research Fund International, there were over 17 million new cancer diagnoses in 2018 alone.

A sudden cancer diagnosis can bring up discussions for future fertility and family planning. Some families turn to egg or sperm preservation prior to starting their cancer treatment. Aggressive cancers requiring treatment right away and can leave families gasping for air as they come to grips with the diagnosis and make decisions on ensuring their ability to conceive without breaking the bank.

What to expect

More than 85,000 people seek fertility treatments annually. Many of them struggle financially to afford treatment, and some give up on having a family completely due to the price tag. In Florida, for example, Jan and Glenda Knight* (names have been changed to protect their identities) are a lesbian couple who used intrauterine insemination (IUI) to conceive their baby boy. They were taken by surprise by the cost of sperm vials.

“For an IUI, [it] was only a few hundred. The sperm was the expensive part though. Depending on the cryobank, one single-use [sperm vial] can average to about $1,000 per month for only 0.5 milliliters! That’s basically like a drop of water,” said Jan.

Knowing the different treatment options available and the costs can help you decide your best course of action.  Jan said it’s important to do your research beforehand because both she and her partner felt doctors “sort of just expected you to know everything and what your plan was to have a baby” when they were going through the process.

Average cost of infertility treatment

Some of the more common infertility treatments and their average costs include:

  • Consultation — $200 to $400
  • Medications — $3,000 to $5,000
  • PDG genetic testing — $3,000 to $6,000
  • IUI insemination — $300 to $1,000
  • IVF — $12,000+
  • Egg preservation — $8,000+
  • Surrogacy — $90,000+
  • Injectable fertility drugs — $2,750

Some in vitro fertilization (IVF) clinics have money back guarantees ranging from 70% to 100% refunds for unsuccessful treatments or unused cycles. Others offer discounted multi-cycle programs to make repeated attempts more budget friendly. Ultimately, refund programs are designed for younger people with higher chances of success.

Eligibility requirements usually include:

  • Age limitations
  • Minimum number of IVF cycle attempts
  • Body mass index (BMI) restrictions
  • Blood level requirements

If you’ve already undergone several failed IVF cycles and would like to try again, you may not be eligible to participate in the refund program. Some programs also have restrictions on refunds after a miscarriage.

The expense of fertility treatments leads many couples consider alternatives like adoption, which is a chance to add to the family while also giving a loving home to a child in need. Many are caught by surprise at the average $20,000 to $40,000 cost attached to private adoptions in America, and the $20,000 to $50,000 price tag for international adoptions. In contrast, adopting from foster care runs between $0 and $2,500.

Any type of adoption process can be fraught with parenting challenges, frustrations and risks, but people who successfully adopt a child are the first to say it was worth every penny and every struggle to have their child in their lives.

Dealing with the implications of infertility is devastating for some. Linda Mata* (the name has been changed to protect her identity), a soon-to-be mom in south Florida, is currently pregnant with her first child and said it took over two years to conceive.

“It was taking an emotional toll on us, but I kept reminding myself, when the right time comes, it’ll happen,” she said.

Mata said that the possibility of needing fertility treatments is tough for many couples to accept.

“I avoided going to the doctors about it because I was worried there was something wrong with me, and I didn’t want to face it,” Mata said.

Fortunately, the stigma associated with fertility treatments is vanishing as the number of people seeking treatments increases. According to a Marketdata report, the infertility services market is up 21% from 2016 and has a forecasted average annual revenue growths of 7% through 2023. The U.S. market for fertility drugs is also growing at 6% annually and is presently worth $600 to $700 million.

The explosive growth is likely due to an increasing number of millennials choosing to put off having children until they are in their 30s. They are waiting to be in a better position personally, professionally and financially to give their offspring the best chances in life.

As businesses recognize their employees’ desires to delay having children, companies like Apple, Facebook and Google are offering egg freezing as an employee perk to cater to women choosing to delay pregnancy to focus on other pursuits.

With more women looking to preserve their future fertility, investors are hearing the cash registers ring to signal the sound of an untapped market, and they may be right. Marketdata’s report states 75% of potential clients don’t use infertility services.

Private equity firms and venture capitalists are hoping to stake their claim on the market by persuading women in their 20s to take proactive steps to ensure their future fertility. To raise awareness and increase accessibility, they’re plunking millions into national fertility clinics, frozen egg banks and fertility assessment products. Female-focused health startups received $392 million in funding capital in 2019 alone, which is almost four times the amount from just six years ago. Some startups are using the money to develop fertility products like tests to show women in their 20s and 30s where their fertility stands.

Evaluating the cost

Fertility treatments are time sensitive. A woman’s greatest reproductive years occur in her 20s, with gradual declines in her early 30s and significant decreases every year after 35. A 35-year-old woman undergoing IVF has a 39.6% chance of conceiving while a woman over 40 has an 11.5% chance. Success rates improve as technologies advance, but most people feel that waiting until they’ve saved up enough money isn’t an option.

Does my insurance cover this?

The vast majority of states don’t have infertility insurance coverage laws. Of the 18 states that do, only half mandate insurance coverage for fertility preservation resulting from iatrogenic, or medically-induced, infertility. These states include California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island.

Elective fertility preservation procedures like egg and sperm freezing are rarely, if ever, covered — unless there’s a medical diagnosis that jeopardizes future ability to conceive.

States like California and Louisiana also explicitly exclude IVF coverage. Others like Montana, Ohio, Utah and West Virginia have restrictions on infertility services or fail to define the scope of services qualifying for coverage.

The map below gives a quick overview of coverage in all states with mandated fertility insurance coverage. For a complete list of laws, refer to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine’s patient education website, ReproductiveFacts.org.

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If you live in a state with coverage laws for infertility and have health insurance through your employer, check with human resources to determine whether your plan is fully insured or self-insured. Only fully insured plans are required to follow state law. Your company size, where your employer’s policy was written and other factors could affect whether your insurance carrier is required to comply with state infertility coverage laws.

Always verify with your health insurance provider directly to make sure the type of fertility treatment you’re seeking is covered under your plan. You can speak with the billing department and request a copy of your explanation of benefits (EOB) to review what you’re entitled to. Some other questions to consider asking are:

  1. Is fertility testing covered, and what types are covered?
  2. How many cycles of infertility treatment are covered?
  3. What coverage do I have for surrogacy and adoption?
  4. Are there any age restrictions on fertility testing or treatment?
  5. What are my coverage limitations when it comes to infertility treatments?
  6. Is coverage any different for same-sex couples or single parents by choice?

Special insurance considerations for same-sex couples and single parents by choice

Those with situational infertility are hit especially hard by insurance limitations. Jan and her partner said the best thing to do was “put money aside before starting or look into payment plans because insurance doesn’t cover much, if at all, for some people.”

While health insurance providers offering infertility benefits can’t withhold coverage for services because of sexual orientation or gender identity, many have rules in place stating there must be an infertility diagnosis to qualify. Insurance providers won’t cover purchasing sperm, and very few policies pay for surrogacy. As with heterosexual couples, elective fertility preservation is generally not covered.

The majority of adults with situational infertility presently have limited choices for a biological child, but the future looks promising. Some employers are stepping in as they recognize the coverage gap and are looking for better insurance plans and alternative solutions to offer all their employees.

How to cover out-of-pocket costs

Since insurance may only partially cover expenses, and coverage may depend on your plan and the services needed, many people look into other options to pay for treatments and procedures. The table below lists popular financing options and their benefits and considerations.

Method Benefits Considerations
Credit card Many cards offer 0% intro APR for specific period. –

Can earn points, miles or cash back rewards, depending on the credit card.

Cards geared toward fertility treatments and adoption offer higher credit limits.

Standard purchase APR applies to remaining balance after intro period.

Standard APRs for credit cards are significantly higher than personal loans.

Credit limits may not be high enough to finance entire treatment.

High debt-to-credit ratio can negatively impact credit scores.

Personal loan Interest rates are fixed and are lower than many other financing options.

Can refinance in the future for better rates or repayment terms.

Lending limits are often $50,000 or more.

May have a cosigner for better rates or approval.

No restrictions on use of borrowed funds.

Approval times as little as one day.

Hard credit pull may temporarily lower credit scores.

Some lenders charge percentage-based loan origination fees.

Home equity loan Can get lower APRs since home is used as collateral.

May qualify even with bad credit.

Can draw money only as needed.

Risk losing home if can’t pay make payments.

Must pay closing costs on loan.

May have high upfront fees.

HSA/FSA Uses pretax money to pay for fertility treatment expenses.

Most health insurers offer HSAs or FSAs.

Putting money in HSA or FSA reduces your taxable income.

Uses your cash to pay for treatments so no worries about paying back.

– Only an option if fertility treatment costs are an eligible expense. – Accounts have annual contribution limits and are most likely not enough to fund entire treatment.
Retirement savings/401(k) Can withdraw all contributions to the account.

Qualified distributions from traditional IRA can be taken without penalty.

Borrowed funds don’t enjoy market growth rates.

May owe early withdrawal penalties and fees.

Money taken from 401(k) must be returned within five years or immediately if you leave your job.

Organizations that can help

Several organizations also offer funds to make fertility treatments more affordable. Many are open to all permanent U.S. residents and are not location-dependent.

Organization What’s Offered Eligibility State Available
Baby Quest Foundation Funds a range of procedures including egg and sperm donation, egg freezing, artificial insemination, in vitro fertilization, embryo donation, and gestational surrogacy. Open to all genders, singles, same-sex couples and all who are permanent residents of the U.S. All
The Tinina Q. Cade Foundation Helps with costs medical infertility treatments and domestic adoption. Open to all; applicants must have a diagnosis of infertility from their doctor and must be legal, permanent U.S. residents. All
Cleveland Clinic Offers emergency and other medically necessary hospital-level services free of charge. Currently an eligible recipient of the General Assistance or the Disability Assistance Programs and income is at or below 100% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. OH, FL, NV
The Fertility Foundation of Texas Gives one time grants to qualifying uninsured infertility patients of up to $10,000 toward embryology services, laboratory services, medications and hospital or facility fees. Must be a Central Texas resident. TX
The Hope for Fertility Foundation Awards grants of up to $5,000 to be used toward a variety of treatments like IUI, IVF, embryo adoption and cryopreservation. Available to couples who are married, are legal residents of the United States and have been officially diagnosed with infertility by a medical professional. All
Parental Hope Family Grant Has an IVF grant and frozen embryo transfer grant covering the full cost of treatment. Open to all; at least one applicant must have an infertility diagnosis. Grant requirements also dictate all medical services must be conducted at the Institute for Reproductive Health in Cincinnati, Ohio. All

The bottom line

While a large segment of people seeking fertility treatments are struggling to conceive, a growing portion of women are choosing fertility treatments to keep their future options open. Millennial women are holding off on having children in their 20s and early 30s to achieve their goals and build a stable home. Investors and venture capitalists are recognizing the opportunity and are making fertility treatments more accessible to the public.

Health insurers and policymakers, on the other hand, have been slow to join the trend. Only a handful of states have infertility insurance coverage laws, and mandates vary vastly by state. People with situational infertility like LGBT couples or single moms by choice, or who undergo elective fertility treatments for reasons other than a medical necessity, have to pay for costly fertility procedures and treatments out of pocket.

While fertility treatments can total tens of thousands of dollars, financing choices offer affordable opportunities. Personal loans, for instance, have lower interest rates than credit cards, don’t require your home as collateral and have no restrictions on how funds are used. Several organizations also offer fertility grants for anyone struggling with infertility but are unable to afford treatments.

Together, financing and grants options can be just what’s needed to make your current or future dream of conceiving come true without risking your financial stability and well-being.

The post How to Pay for Fertility Treatment appeared first on The Simple Dollar.

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