Terris Little Haven

I've traded scrubs for relaxation as a retired nurse, soaking up the Southern charm in Georgia and living my ultimate life! With my furry friends by my side, I'm not just a tiny house dweller – I'm a tiny house enthusiast, blogging my heart out along the way!


How Does Secondary Insurance Work?

Insurance is complicated in the United States. Between individual insurance, state-assisted insurance, and employer insurance, there’s a lot to learn and understand. 

Even if you’ve grasped the idea of a primary health insurance option, how does secondary insurance work? Does everyone have it? Does everyone need it? What is it for? 

We want to provide some insight into secondary health insurance so you can keep yourself and your loved ones safe. Keep reading to learn more. 

What Is Primary Insurance? 

Primary health insurance is the health insurance associated with the employee, member, or subscriber that the insurance is designated to.

If you have insurance through the state, insurance through your work, or insurance that you’ve purchased as an individual, it’s going to be your primary insurance. 

This is the insurance that hospitals or other healthcare centers will bill first. 

Before looking into secondary health insurance, make sure that you understand your primary health insurance. Look into the insurance from your employer, your personal policy, or have someone help you understand how Medicare works

What Is Secondary Insurance? 

Sometimes primary health insurance isn’t enough. You may have used up your benefits, or your benefits aren’t usable with certain providers. This is where secondary health insurance comes in. 

Not everyone needs secondary health insurance, but it can still be helpful. Many people who have secondary insurance have it through their family members.

For example, people under the age of 26 may be using insurance from their parents while also under their own plans. Other people may use their spouse’s insurance. 

Some people use Medicare as a primary insurance option, but others use it as an addition to a private plan that they’re already enrolled in. Worker’s compensation is also a kind of secondary insurance if the injured worker also has a primary coverage option. 

How Does Secondary Insurance Work? 

You don’t get to decide which insurance that providers bill first. They will always go for your primary insurance.

With that in mind, though, it’s normal for your primary insurance to leave gaps in your healthcare. Your insurer may not want to cover the duration of your treatment time, specific medications, or certain kinds of procedures. You may also have high copays.

When that happens, secondary insurance can come and fill in the gaps. After your first insurance has “worn out,” the remainder of the bill will go to your second.

This doesn’t mean that you won’t be responsible for any costs. The nature of the American healthcare system is that it’s more than likely that you’ll have to pay something, even a small amount, after both of your insurance plans have done their part. 

Secondary Health Insurance Is Extra Coverage

 So how does secondary insurance work? It’s no different than your primary insurance; it just comes around after your primary insurance is no longer useful. 

Consider your secondary insurance like “backup” insurance. Keep in mind that it’s possible that your primary and secondary insurance plans have the same limitations. 

If you’re worried about your coverage, talk to a representative to learn more about your insurance today.

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