Over the past couple of days I have been scrambling, trying to figure out what the hell to do about our health insurance conundrum. I was researching exemptions because one of my coworkers told me her son always claims the “Coverage is Considered Unaffordable” exemption on his tax return. At first I scoffed and didn’t think it would work for us, but as I looked into it, I realized it would totally apply to us. “Affordable” in 2017 is considered no more than 8.16% of your household income.


I did the math, and since the lowest cost plan available to us is $1,444.26 / month (which means $17,335 / year), that would mean we could make up to $212,000 dollars in our household in 2017 and still be able to claim this exemption.

Um, sign me up. We are currently making nowhere near that amount, and if we somehow win the lottery 2017, I’ll gladly pay the 2.5% tax penalty and thank my lucky stars that we are so blessed.

Don’t get me wrong – it still makes me SUPER nervous to be uninsured. As I’ve mentioned before, our acute care is done for free by my employer, but we’d be in trouble if something big happened. That being said, things are changing with my work situation right now, and we will hopefully have employer (partially) sponsored healthcare coverage come April 1st or 15th, so we have decided to keep our fingers crossed for the next 3.5 months that none of us have any serious health concerns while we are uninsured.

Healthcare in America. What a mess.


  1. Eeeeeeeep Yep. In the same boat here soon and insurance is so expensive. It is awful. We will pay 15% of our income in premiums next year at least, plus another several thousand on the deductible.

    1. Yeah, we would have been around 18% of our income and still a massive deductible of $6k+ per person. I just couldn’t do it. First time in my life being uninsured.

  2. Wow, interesting, I was unaware of that exemption. I think there are a lot of us who qualify for that! I wish the new administration well in bringing some sense back to our health care system, but I fear what will happen is more of the same political fighting where nothing gets better. 3.5 months will fly by in good health and then you’ll have insurance again with your job and all will be well. 🙂 May as well think that way, rather than worry!

    1. Thanks, Mom 🙂

  3. This makes me so nervous for you, especially with an overseas trip coming up. But I get it. Rock – hard place. Awesome.

    Good luck.

    1. Insurance wouldn’t work overseas anyway! If I broke a leg or something, I’d still have to pay $11k out of pocket WITH insurance just because of 3 months of premiums + a high deductible. Screw it.

      1. Travel insurance has gotta be cheaper

      2. Our insurance reimburses us a good portion if overseas. We’d pay there then submit for reimbursement. But yeah… $17,000… 🙄

        1. You have a much better plan than I would have had. 😉

  4. I’m grateful for my employer’s insurance, but it’s still ridiculous. I’m stuck because my kids’ dad carries their insurance, but I’m stuck paying everything. It sucks. He has a family deductible which is super crazy high and I have my own deductible to cover. At least you have acute care coverage to take care of things. Hope it all works out with your employer. Stay healthy until then 😀

  5. Casey Ray · · Reply

    I’m so sorry that you aren’t able to find a cheaper plan or qualify for subsidies through the marketplace. How terrible! I almost went uninsured for the last two months of this year when I was between jobs but opted not to at the last minute – two weeks before I developed appendicitis. The bills were over $60,000 but fortunately my deductible was only $3,000. Of course, when I signed up for the insurance I thought I’d never meet the deductible over only two months as a healthy 32 year old.

    But I remember how hard it was to sort through all the plans (I was in Colorado at the time, too) and what a tough call it was. It took a lot of energy and phone calls to figure out the subsidy I qualified for. I hate that you aren’t eligible for any good options. At least you have access to some informal health care through your employer!

    1. Yes, definitely a tough call. Clearly we are hoping nothing big happens in the next 3 months, and worst case scenario is that we will be self paying. At least self pay rate are much lower than what is actually charged to insurance companies (I know this because I do medical billing). Fingers crossed.

  6. Definitely a nerve-wracking time but it makes sense in many ways. I’ll be sending good thoughts these next few months and hoping that a group plan becomes available to you this spring!!

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