(KUTV) Natasha Sponbeck runs a small business called Zap Electric. Natasha says the company has always offered health insurance to its employees.
“That is a great benefit to recruit people,” she said. “They want to go work somewhere where they get benefits.”
Zap Electric’s coverage has been through Humana. Natasha says she was concerned about changes coming because of the Affordable Care Act until she got a letter in the mail.
“I got a letter from Humana stating I could keep my grandfathered plan,” she said.
Natasha agreed. But week later, her insurance agent discovered Humana has already switched Zap Electric over to a new, Affordable Care Act approved plan. The new plan will cost roughly $12-thousand more per year.
“It’s a lot more money for way worse coverage,” Natasha said.
Natasha contacted Humana to complain, and was sent an email that said, “…there has been a lot of miscommunication and errors in letters.”
And the email says, indeed “Zap Electric is going to have to change to an [Affordable Care Act] compliant plan.”
But Natasha suspects that the miscommunication may have been deliberate. She says that if she hadn’t been proactive she would not have discovered the error before the bills went up.
“If this was a mistake, why have they not sent all of us letters letting us know this is a mistake?” she asked.
Natasha says she tried to work out a deal with Humana but the insurance giant wouldn’t budge.
Natasha turned to the Utah Department of Insurance to file a complaint but she cannot get a return call.
Frustrated and not wanting to pay for the more expensive plan, she decided to Get Gephardt.
Get Gephardt began our investigation with the Affordable Care Act signed into law nearly four years ago. In the act we found a paragraph that talks about modifications to plans. It says that if a change is made to a plan then the insurance company has to “provide notice” to the customer. The act also says the insurance provider must give a 60 days notice of such changes so the customer can to decide if they want to stay or go.
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