As the end of the school year draws to a close, it is the beginning of a busy time for college-bound freshman and their families. Even if it’s not your child’s time quiet yet, it’s always best to think ahead. This transition requires a lot of preparation and planning – the obvious topics include which school to choose, where to live, books, meals, transportation and work.  And not so obvious but equally important, your child’s health and medical care options.

One thing many parents tend to overlook, especially those of the newly-minted college freshman, is how to best ensure your college student has medical coverage in the event of illness or injury. When researching health insurance for your kids, consider the following:

The new health care reform law allows you to keep your children on your plan until they turn 26 years old, regardless of their student status, provided they meet certain criteria. We all hope our children will find that amazing employment opportunity that provides health insurance in their early 20’s, but we all know often this is not the case.  Whether your child is working on an advanced degree, or backpacking through Europe, feel secure knowing they are covered under your plan.

Another consideration that may be less expensive is to have your child apply for their own individual health policy.  When a parent is the primary subscriber on a policy, the rates are based on the age of that parent.  Depending on your situation, it may actually be more beneficial to get a policy for your child in their own name.  This situation actually holds true for all children, not just college students.

On a more serious note – if your college student is applying for/accepting private student loans that you are co-signing, consider a term life insurance policy on  your student for the amount of the loan.  We hate to think of a worst-case scenario but if the unthinkable happens, you won’t want to be burdened with repayment of that loan. The cost for a term policy on a healthy student can be very low and in the long run is a small price to pay for financial security and piece of mind.

Darci Gutierrez has been working in the Insurance Industry since 1997, where she began with inside sales and Adminstration.   Licensed since 2002, she then began Darci Gutierrez Insurance Services, specializing in Individual and Family Plans as well as Small Employer Group plans.   Darci is currently licensed in CA, TX and MI.  www.dghealth-life.com, Contact Darci at (925) 451-2871