I'm investigating reappraising our house to get rid of PMI. We meet the conditions for application, which involve bringing in an appraiser. The appraiser we would pay for is hired through the mortgage company — we have no control over the appraisal process. Do appraisers who are hired to get rid of PMI do a fair and honest job in calculating the true market value, or, alternatively, do their valuations fall close to online appraisals on average, within some percentage? (Are online estimates close to market value, within noise? Two online estimates suggest we are over the required valuation by roughly 40-50k.) Finally, are there downsides or gotchas to getting rid of PMI, other than a smaller federal deduction at tax time? [more inside]
In the light of several recent arson cases in Somerville, MA, we would like to get additional home insurance for our condo unit. I'm not sure how to go about it. [more inside]
In the state of Michigan, USA, can your auto insurance [liability+collision+comprehensive] premium be increased as a result of a collision claim for which the driver/policyholder is judged 'not at fault' by the police or court? I thought that it could, but I have a friend who is sure it cannot. Can any of you provide a definitive answer?
My wife was rear ended twice back on August 28th (she is fine, no injuries). Our 2012 Focus suffered rear bumper damage. The driver of the other car failed to stop after my wife and another vehicle in front of her, waited to make a left-hand turn. [more inside]
Near where I live in Boston, there is a dangerous road, and a particularly dangerous intersection. I'd like to take action to have someone take steps to remediate it. Can you recommend specific resources and data to use to make the most compelling call to action? [more inside]
I'm looking for therapists in San Francisco and I just found out that I'm covered under United Behavioral Health. I'm wondering if people've had any experience seeing a therapist or a psychiatrist through them, and how I might go about finding someone in their provider directory who'd a good match for me. I'd also really appreciate any recommendations for therapists in SF who take UBH. [more inside]
Unfortunately we did not win Powerball last night but it sparked an interesting conversation. Do wealthy (US) people have health insurance? I would think that once you hit a certain amount of wealth you could go ahead and drop it, right? Like $50 million or so? Which made us discuss how someone like Sunny von Bulow could be kept in luxurious surroundings for most of her comatose life. Would her family have paid out of pocket or are rich people dealing with same health insurance BS that the rest of us do? I mean she was in a coma for years, it had to have cost a small fortune.
Her car edged forward and bumped into mine while waiting on a red. What should I have done? [more inside]
Having found the lump a year ago this June, it took me until today to find the courage to try doing something. Many of the sites I found said to go through my local health department, so I finally worked up the courage to walk in today. They had no idea what to say, and no longer offer any program that would help. I walked out with a pamphlet for a clinic in another town that they think "might" have a program to help with a sliding payment scale but they weren't even sure about that. [more inside]
My friend's wife pushed me from their deck into their in-ground pool on Sunday at a party. Now my knee is damaged. I could barely walk back to my car; saw a doctor tuesday; complete tear of the ACL + more (evil triad if that means anything to you.) I'm married, have a 21 month old and work for myself (I make money when I'm mostly on the road, although I do some writing/consulting from home.) Minimum I'm off my feet for a month....yes, I'm consulting lawyers, but I'd like to keep the friendship, if possible. Help! [more inside]
Does anyone have any experience with purchasing health insurance through the Freelancer's Union? Any feedback on the process and level of satisfaction with coverage would be appreciated. [more inside]
I got into an accident yesterday. It was my first accident so I really had no idea what to do. The other driver kept insisting it was my fault and I just kept apologizing (which is admitting fault?). How does this play in during the insurance claim? [more inside]
Negotiating self pay medical bill. I want to have an idea of how much the surgical practice/surgeon would have been paid if the patient had had insurance. How much will they get if they hire a collection agency? Do they get a percentage or just sell the debit for a fixed price? The patient is being billed 1850.00 self pay for the procedure. The procedure was at a major Boston hospital and the patient is being billed self pay due to a temporary lapse in subsidized insurance. The hospital has already written off the bill. The billing date was sometime around the end of March 2013. The patient has been told by the billing organization that represents the surgeon that they have to deal directly with the surgeon or their practice.
I have no medical insurance and cannot afford to see my physician to get my prescriptions refilled. Any idea(s) on how I could possibly get then refilled for nothing ? [more inside]
How does one insure fine art? A friend of ours recently inherited a piece of art. At the time they thought it was just a print and the estate valued it as just that. Turns out, it's the real deal! They have home owners insurance, but not sure if they should be getting something additional now that they know they have a seriously high value piece. They don't want to contact insurance company and raise a flag/ premium if it isn't something you normally do. So, I turn to the experts...
The co-pay is still high, because the device's mark-up seems ridiculous. [more inside]
My friend Stan (very) recently moved to the USA, and has already had a run-in with his health insurance that we are not sure how to deal with. Stan's new boss Joe invited Stan's family over for an afternoon, and at some point Stan's five year old fell and cut his arm on a rock in the garden. [more inside]
My friend's daughter was travelling to Canada over the weekend. Apparently she was stopped at the border due to some health insurance related issue. She didn't make it to the hostel she was supposed to stay at the first night, or the volunteer program she was destined for. She called those places when she knew she wouldn't make it, but she hasn't called home at all, as far as we can tell. And we have no idea where she is right now. What can we do? [more inside]
Firefighters put out a fire 2 floors above my apartment this week. Thankfully the fire didn't spread but my apartment suffered some water damage from the fire hoses. The water was smelly and brown, and got on some possessions. What can be cleaned and kept? What should be thrown out? [more inside]
I want to find out how much insurance would cost for a non-standard business model. How do I get in touch with someone who would be able to take in information, agree on assumptions, and put together a quote? [more inside]
How can I find out if a car really has been totaled? [more inside]
Hello, I am an Indian citizen visiting the United States for a few weeks. My travel plans have now extended to include 3 weeks in the United Kingdom and Europe on my way back home. While I do have insurance for my US trip, I do not have any for the UK/Europe leg of my journey. I would like to know which is the best medical/travel insurance policy that I could buy in the United States, given that I am not a resident here. I am looking at a policy that covers 250k USD; I am a 35 year old woman. Thanks a lot!
Through a paperwork SNAFU, we failed to secure homeowners insurance at closing on the house we purchased (with cash, no mortgage) in Florida 78 days ago. Now we keep getting told by multiple Florida insurers that because the house was not insured within 30days of closing, they will not write a policy for it. They do say "If you get insurance on it, we will be happy to write a policy for you" [more inside]
Can you help a small non-profit figure out our rights and opportunities with the public exchanges on October 1? [more inside]
I am fed up/freaked out about the cost of my health insurance... [more inside]
I was hit by a garbage truck a little over a month ago. He had a stop sign that he decided to ignore. I was on a rte/main road with no stop sign, going with the flow of (considerable) traffic. My car was pretty seriously damaged and needs to be fixed, but so far the truck company's insurance company hasn't accepted liability, and are hanging their decision on a guy who apparently doesn't exist. In the meantime, my car's a mess. How to get a response so I can get my car fixed and not have to cover the rental myself? [more inside]
My brother has been diagnosed with an acute form of leukemia, and is currently in the ICU. What we know is that he's not going to die tonight. He's got some life left in him. They're not sure about the precise form yet, that will take some time. But in the meantime, we have a problem: he's 31, recently unemployed, and uninsured. My family is far from being able to afford out of pocket health costs. And from all the doctors, drugs, machines he's been hooked up to in the past 10 hours, I know the bill is already creeping into the many tens of thousands of dollars. So my question to MeFites is: what are our options? How do we pay for this? We have very few assets, although I'm sure we'd sell the family home to keep my brother alive for a few more years. But apart from that, we've got nothing substantial. (I'm a graduate student, and my mother is a self-employed seamstress. My father is unemployed). Are there any gov't programs available? Can he go on Medicaid? Etc. I'm having trouble finding hard info on people in his particular situation (not a minor, not elderly, and diagnosed with cancer). Help!
In 6 weeks' time, my husband and I are quitting our jobs to go on a 2-3 month road trip around the USA before moving to Europe. I have some questions about travel/trip/health insurance for folks who may have done this or something similar. Is it sensible or possible to use travel insurance as our primary health insurance? [more inside]
...That actually exists right now, and isn't just some thing in a trial state only available in 1-2 small locations? I'm paying a lot for a car i barely drive. [more inside]
Does anyone know how the Affordable Care Act will affect Healthy San Francisco/SF Path participants when it begins?
I'm looking for good resources for information about the upcoming exchanges, especially concerning eligibility restrictions, specifically in Colorado. [more inside]
I recently made a switch to a different company for my homeowner's insurance (details after the jump about why). I fear I may have made a big mistake, but I honestly don't understand ANYthing about insurance and the more I try to read about it and look at my policies, the more confused I get. It's like someone's speaking Mandarin to me. I feel like a colossal idiot and I have no one to ask anymore now that my dad, whom I relied on to help me with this kind of stuff, is gone. I'm wondering how much I messed up here, and what I should look for to fix it. [more inside]
A relative was recently in an accident, and the other driver is at fault. It occurs to me that car insurance seems broken, since my relative is now trying to get paid by a company whose client is the other driver. How do we make sure they have our best interests in mind? [more inside]
I temporarily swapped cars with my parents. While my mother was driving it alone, another driver sideswiped her and damaged the vehicle. How does the insurance get handled? Obviously, the driver-at-fault's insurance should pay for the repairs. But do we contact my insurance company, my parent's insurance company, or only the other driver's insurance company? [more inside]
I need group health insurance, but I don't know what my options are with the new potential changes in the law. I am in the East Bay, in California. Help? [more inside]
Hello! I am an independent contractor (1099 Misc form) for the first time in my life and need some tax advice as the budget is a bit tight! Therapy, acupuncture, bicycle, insurance, computer, etc. How do deductions work? [more inside]
mental health snowflake details inside. [more inside]
I am currently employed full time with group health insurance. I've accepted a new position at a different company starting August 1. If I put in my 2 weeks notice and quit on July 12, will I still be covered for the remainder of the month? [more inside]
We've had a giant storm and an incredible number of trees are down including many blocking roads. One downed tree is mine, although thankfully it's not in the street. I was actually in the process of getting an arborist out here to get it taken down next week...and now it's down! Er, mostly down! And that's where I don't know what to do. [more inside]
I think I might be a little depressed. Sometimes more than a little, but usually at least a little. And I know I have issues with anxiety. So, I've decided to get therapy. And I've called my insurance to figure out how to go about doing that. So my question is: now what? I don't know if I need a psychiatrist or a psycologist. I know that a psychiatrist perscribes medication, but I don't know if I need that. Knowing that seems like their job. [more inside]
I have been halfheartedly looking for a new job. My current position does not leave me much time or energy for searching, plus I have had a lot of illness in my family in the last year, which is time-consuming and emotionally draining. When a supplier I work with mentioned that someone in her company had left recently, I asked her whether she plans to replace him, and she said she does. I emailed her my résumé, and she sent me the job listing. In her email, she asked me whether I was interested, and if not, to let her know what my concerns are so they could address them because "your résumé is great!" How do I respond in the most effective manner? [more inside]
At some point, my parked car was hit. I didn't notice until I got home. It could have happened in three or four different parking lots--I ran several errands. There is fair amount of damage to my front bumper and a dent in my hood, but I can't prove I didn't do it myself. Am I going to be able to file an insurance claim on this? What do I need to know before I call my insurance company? Could this raise my premiums? [more inside]
I have learned there is a 50% chance I have inherited a genetic disease. I would like to be tested to see if I actually have the faulty gene, but have a few concerns as to insurance implications. Any help would be much appreciated. [more inside]
I've always been prone to depression as a result of my dysthymia and due to recent traumatic events, I've slumped into depression again. My work productivity and quality suffered as a result and I ended up breaking down to my manager, sobbing my eyes out and explaining my situation. I was even developing suicidal ideations and at this point, I've taken a little over a week off of work. In the mean time, I've seen a doctor, a psychiatrist, and a therapist for my depression and I've been prescribed Pristiq. Now, my question is in regards to requesting a leave of absence for my depression [more inside]
Asking for a friend. Her mom lives in Nashville, Tennessee. "My mom was just diagnosed with a rare and aggressive type of breast cancer. She will need both chemo and surgery. In addition to the physical, medical, and emotional toll treatment will take, we need to figure out how to pay for this. [more inside]
I just received a notification from my insurance company that as of July 1 they're no longer covering the brand-name version of a necessary medication I take daily. If I want to keep taking it I have to pay the full price (many hundreds of dollars per month)—or switch to the generic, which I've taken before and found that for me it is basically crap. It doesn't work as well, and has pretty unpleasant side effects, and I have documentation to that effect from my doctor of many years. Is there anything I can do to create a happy ending here?
Rear ended a car on a slick road today. Called police to get a report filed. Now what? [more inside]
I am looking for sites that can grab quotes from multiple renters and auto insurers. Its tedious to enter all the information into multiple sites. Could you recommend a few websites? At this time I am looking to get renters insurance but thought I would find out about auto as well. Thanks
Short term health insurance options in Massachusetts? [more inside]
I'm trying to figure out a way to have a car that I own insured and driven primarily by my parents. I can't transfer the title, as there's still a lien and I will be making payments. However, my parents need a car urgently, so I need to get them to a good, insured state with a reliable automobile. Does anyone have experience with this?