Under health reform, as of Jan. 1, 2014, health insurance companies can't make you answer health questions to buy health insurance. They also can't require a pre-existing condition waiting period for claims you submit.
However, once you're on a health plan, they can ask you questions to find out if you qualify for one of the following programs:
- Disease management programs - These help consumers learn how to manage chronic health conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease or depression.
- Case management programs - These help consumers who have very serious health conditions, such as leukemia, and help cut through the red tape to get the insurance company to properly pay for treatment.
Both of these services are voluntary, so you don't have to answer the questions, and - if you do answer the questions - you don't have to participate in the programs.
Types of insurance that require you to answer health questions
Insurance companies can ask you health questions when buying other types of insurance, such as:
- Dental insurance
- Disability insurance
- Life insurance
- Long-term care insurance
- Medicare Supplement and Medicare Advantage plans (under certain circumstances)
- Vision insurance