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How much does health insurance cost for the self-employed small business owner?

By on August 29th, 2012
Filed: College Students, Consumers, Employee Benefits, Facts, Health Insurance, Health Reform, Self-Employed, Short-Term, Small Business Owners, Unemployed, Uninsured

New data on individual plan costs for 2012: available here

In 2010, the number of Americans who identified themselves as “self-employed” reached 22.1 million,  according to the latest data from the Census Bureau. That’s about 15% of the labor force and over two percent higher than the it was in 2002.

We certainly see a lot of self-employment here in the Silicon Valley. When people find out that I work in the health insurance industry, the first question they’ll usually ask is one of these three:

  1. How much does health insurance cost for the self employed?
  2. How much does health insurance cost for a self-employed small business owner?
  3. What’s the average cost of health insurance for a small business with one person?

And, because the health insurance industry is as complex as it is, I can never give them a straight answer. Why?

Because it depends on a number of factors including:

  1. What type of insurance do you want? Your primary options are small group insurance, individual insurance and short-term health insurance.
  2. What state do you live in? In some states you can get small group health insurance with a one-person company. In most states you can’t. And, in some states individual insurance is very affordable, in others it’s not as much.
  3. Do you have any pre-existing conditions? In some states it’s hard to get individual insurance or short-term insurance if you’ve got health issues.
  4. How long do you need the insurance? If you’re planning to hire employees in 6 to 12 months, you can get away with short-term insurance. If you want or need the insurance indefinitely, then short-term may not be the best option.

Here are several previous blog posts we’ve done on the topic of health insurance costs.


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About Nate Purpura

Nate Purpura is a 15-year veteran of print and broadcast journalism, corporate communications, PR and internet marketing. He’s spent the last decade working in the health care and insurance industries. Over fifteen years he’s covered numerous areas of health care including pharmaceuticals, health and wellness programs, chronic disease management programs, cutting-edge diagnostic tools, Medicare and health insurance, and online marketplaces (exchanges).

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