Archive for June, 2020

How infertility insurance helps families

Whether you are a new parent, a soon-to-be empty nester or a grandparent, the desire to see your children flourish and grow will always be a part of your life. Trying to prepare your children for their future is a lifelong challenge. There is a balance of letting go. For instance, when they try to ride a bike without training wheels for the first time and pulling children back when they forget to watch for cars in a parking lot. No matter the age of your child or season of life, your role as a parent or grandparent brings its own challenges. 

Your family’s legacy

Between teaching children valuable lessons and planning for their future, it is easy to get caught up with the hopes and dreams of their future families. Many of us wonder who our child’s future partner may be. We also wonder if we may become grandparents or great-grandparents one day.

Many of us would like to leave our family a legacy to help them long into the future. By making plans now, we can help prevent financial hardships caused by unexpected medical diagnoses like infertility.  

Why choose infertility insurance?

No one knows if their child/grandchild or their future partner will be affected by infertility. Even now, there is still much that isn’t known about infertility and the causes of infertility.

What we do know is that infertility impacts 1 in 8 couples. The cost of infertility treatments is expensive. Cofertility, a blog that aims to inform and connect families dealing with infertility in a compassionate way, shares that pricing can vary from $800 for intrauterine insemination (IUI) to $8,000+ for IVF for just the basics. FertilityIQ documents how much IVF costs by city and region.   

The fact is: High costs of treatment keep families from pursuing their own children. Cofertility published a survey that found that 86% of those undergoing infertility treatment said “they have forgone a fertility treatment option recommended by their doctor…due to cost.”  

What about health insurance from your employer?

While we can’t predict who a future employer will be or even what type of healthcare insurance coverage our children will have access to, we can provide our children protection from the costs of infertility now.  

Not only that, fertility treatments are generally not included in traditional healthcare coverage. Currently only about 26% of the top 500 employers provide any type of infertility coverage. This is mainly due to the high cost of infertility treatment. 

A supplemental health policy/coverage, however, can fill the gaps and complement the health insurance your child may have in the future. It can pick up where other health coverage stops. It can give them the financial resources they need to treat infertility and pursue having their own biological children when they are ready.  

Can a supplemental health policy cover infertility?

Yes. LifeSpring Insurance Services has a Primary Infertility Assistance Policy that provides an affordable insurance solution for infertility treatments in the future. Unlike a traditional health plan, LifeSpring’s innovative policy is geared towards children and their future. By providing coverage early in life, we can offer a one-time premium around $2,000 or less for a policy that provides $50,000 worth of benefits for your child and his or her partner. The policy is designed to cover infertility treatments, providing access to all of the common treatments from IVF, IUI, medicine and storage. This way couples can pursue their own child without the crippling costs that so often compromise their hope. 

How can an insurance policy preserve my family’s legacy?

LifeSpring’s Primary Infertility Policy allows any adult to cover the premium costs for one or more children that they can use in the future. This means a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle or family friend can gift a LifeSpring policy to any Texas child. 

LifeSpring’s innovative supplemental health insurance policy, approved by the Texas Department of Insurance, was designed in the hopes of creating a future where children wouldn’t have to decide between a mortgage payment or fertility treatments. With a LifeSpring Insurance policy, you can give a gift that continues to give over time, one that will ensure that your family will have a lasting legacy. 

Your desire to protect your children is part of what makes you a great mom, dad, grandma and grandpa. Family is one of the most precious parts of life. Consider the lasting impact you can have to preserve your family’s legacy by giving a LifeSpring policy today.  Contact us if you have any questions

7 celebrity dads who faced infertility

In honor of Father’s day, we want to highlight seven celebrity dads who overcame infertility on their path to fatherhood. Infertility and the struggle to have children is a health condition that impacts approximately 7.4 million people. In a single year, approximately 1.9% of all infants born in the United States are conceived using Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). The fact is only one-third of infertility cases are attributed to female factors. Research shows that the other one-third are attributed to male factors, and one-third are attributable to both partners or unknown reasons.

Journey to become a father

Despite the statistics, infertility is still viewed and discussed from almost primarily a woman’s perspective. This stigma is beginning to change as more men share their journey to fatherhood. In recent years, celebrities have begun to share their struggles with infertility to help others know that they are not alone in this journey and that infertility can affect anyone. Here are seven celebrity dads who have endured infertility on their path to fatherhood.

Jimmy Fallon

Tonight Show Host Jimmy Fallon and his wife, film producer Nancy Juvonen, have been very open about their fight with infertility. After trying five years to conceive without any luck, they turned to surrogacy. Thankfully, surrogacy worked, and they were able to welcome two daughters, Winnie and Frances. Learn more about their journey to parenthood.

Gordon Ramsey

British Celebrity Chef Gordon and Tana Ramsey, television broadcaster and author, were part of the one-third group of couples where infertility is the combination of both partners. Tana discovered she had polycystic ovarian syndrome while Gordon discovered he had a low sperm count because of years of working in a hot kitchen. After going through in vitro fertilization (IVF), Tana and Gordon welcomed their daughter Megan in 1998, twins Holly and Jack in 1999 and Matilda in 2002. Listen to Gordon Ramsay as he explored the topic of male infertility with experts and the impact that a diet can have on sperm production and fertility.  

Morgan Spurlock

Documentary Filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, known for his film Super Size Me, made waves in the infertility community through his documentary Vegas Baby that aired on PBS and Netflix. The film, directed by Andrea Micheli, followed aspiring parents as they competed for a chance to win free IVF treatment from a Las Vegas infertility clinic. The movie shined a light on the financial and emotional toll that couples face during their infertility journey. Spurlock is no stranger to the personal toll infertility has on a couple. He and his wife spent $60,000 on fertility treatments, including IVF, to have his son Kallen.

John Legend

Singer-Songwriter John Legend and wife and model, Chrissy Teigen turned to in vitro fertilization (IVF) to conceive their daughter Luna. In a Cosmopolitan interview, the singer said, “We’re lucky that we’re living in an age where we can conceive in other ways. (IVF) brought us Luna and hopefully it will bring us a few more awesome kids, too.” Both John and Chrissy have been outspoken about their journey and the impact infertility had on them.

Hugh Jackman

Actor and singer Hugh Jackman, best known for his portrayal of Wolverine in the X-men movies, and wife and actress Deborra-Lee Furness discovered that becoming parents wasn’t as easy as they had hoped. After years of IVF treatments and several miscarriages, the couple turned to adoption for their son Oscar and daughter Ava. In an interview, Jackman said, “The miscarriage thing, it apparently happens to one in three pregnancies. But it’s very, very rarely talked about. It’s almost secretive, you know, so I hope Deb doesn’t mind me bringing it up now.”

Mark Zuckerburg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg and wife and pediatrician Dr. Priscilla Chan have ushered along the conversation of infertility by openly sharing their two-year journey to conceive, including the three miscarriages they endured. They have two daughters, August and Max. “In today’s open and connected world, discussing these issues doesn’t distance us; it brings us together,” Zuckerberg said. “It creates understanding and tolerance, and it gives us hope. When we started talking to our friends, we realized how frequently this happened — that many people we knew had similar issues and that nearly all had healthy children after all.”

Barack Obama

Former President Barack Obama and wife and First Lady Michelle Obama turned to IVF after suffering a miscarriage. Both of their daughters, Sasha and Malia, were born with the help of infertility treatments. While Michelle has been candid about her experience with infertility in her memoir, Becoming Michelle, former President Barack Obama has not broached the topic in recent interviews.

Infertility takes a toll 

The emotional, mental, physical and financial toll of infertility is one of the common threads of each of these celebrity dad stories. While there is hope in the medical advancements and successes of IVF, there is also community in sharing the stories of personal loss and triumph endured along the journey to parenthood. There are resources now available changing the landscape of infertility treatment.

One such Texas company began with the desire to help families overcome the costs of infertility in an affordable and practical way. Specifically, LifeSpring Insurance Services has created a unique and revolutionary fertility insurance policy that you can purchase for any minor under the age of 13. By providing supplemental health policies for minors, LifeSpring has created an affordable solution for the next generation. LifeSpring’s Primary Infertility Assistance policy is simply the most affordable way to cover infertility treatment costs in the future. Giving a child a policy now will provide them financial resources they need to become a father (or mother) when they are older. Because most health insurance plans rarely cover infertility treatments, this insurance can help protect your future family. Consider a Father’s Day gift that will last generations, and give a LifeSpring policy to a child today.

Can I use an HSA or FSA in Place of Infertility Insurance?

Paying for infertility treatment can be an expensive undertaking for many. If Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) like intrauterine insemination(IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF) is needed, it can cost into the tens of thousands. Risa Kerslake reports that she spent $55,000 on fertility treatments to have her two children. She writes, “Paying thousands of dollars for a chance at pregnancy is a little like playing Russian roulette. Either you’re going to be relieved when you find yourself still breathing at the end or your whole life will seemingly be over.” Her story points to the emotional distress and financial pressure families face who are ready to build families and are unable to do so without help. 

Infertility not often covered

Most health plans don’t cover infertility treatment. FertilityIQ, a fertility information website, tracks employers who add infertility benefits. Their most recent survey of IVF patients paid for all or some of their treatment out-of-pocket. And despite infertility being a medical diagnosis, it is not considered an essential health benefit by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance plans purchased from the healthcare marketplace.  

The U.S. government does not require insurance companies provide infertility treatment coverage as part of a comprehensive health plan. Similarly, it does not mandate that employers offer it as a benefit. According to RESOLVE, just 17 states have some infertility insurance coverage laws, but it doesn’t apply to every company. If you are self-employed, you are on your own. 

Health Savings Accounts another way to save

Health Savings Accounts (HSA) are savings accounts that are paired with high-deductible health plans to save for expenses a health insurance plan does not cover.  They operate much like an individual retirement account (IRA) in that contributions you make are tax-free and can be used exclusively for qualified health expenses including infertility treatments. These types of accounts were set up to encourage individuals to save for medical expenses. 

HSAs can be offered by an employer, or an individual can access them by purchasing a high deductible health plan independently. According to Healthcare.gov, the balance in your HSA will roll over year to year, to give you a chance to save up for healthcare expenses and items needed later on. The annual contribution limits for 2020 are $3,550 for individuals and $7,100 for families. Expenses paid out for qualified expenses are tax-free, another benefit. 

Flexible Savings Accounts offer options

Flexible Savings Accounts (FSA) are employer-sponsored accounts where employees may contribute part of their pre-tax wages that can be reimbursed for qualified medical and dental expenses. Both of these types of accounts work in similar ways in that they allow an individual to save up money to be used tax-free for medical expenses. The employee contribution limit is $2,750 for 2020 with the employer contribution capped at $500. 

According to the Society of Human Resource Management, employers may adopt a carryover feature where participants may roll over up to $500 of their balance to next year. Alternately, they may offer a grace period to give employees an additional time period (2-1/2 months) to use their FSA balance before forfeiting remaining funds. “Plans can offer either the carryover feature or a grace period, but not both, or they can offer neither.”  

Using FSA or HSA funds for infertility treatments

Saving money using an FSA and/or HSA is one that families can pursue to cover some of the costs of infertility treatment if they have access to them. But depending on the infertility treatments needed, it may not cover everything you need on the timeline you prefer. There are strict rules about receipts needed for qualifying expenses, so these plans require some planning and administration work.  

These plans can cover medical expenses applied to the deductible, co-pays and co-insurance, and prescription drug costs. They can also cover other qualifying medical items, procedures and services. See HSA Store and FSA Store for a searchable list.  

A supplemental health policy covering infertility

The CDC reports that 1 in 8 couples face infertility along their journey to become parents. And the emotional, financial and physical toll of treatment is difficult and long-lasting. But, we can remove the barrier of finances for future families by covering children today. A new supplemental health policy available for Texas children ages 0-13 provides a deferred benefit of $50,000 when that child and their partner are older and ready to start a family. Instead of worrying about how generous employer benefits will be and what health plans may available, this plan fills the gaps and can be used with no co-insurance and no deductible for infertility treatments including IUI and IVF.  It can also be used alongside your regular health plan. 

LifeSpring Insurance Services offers its Primary Infertility Assistance Policy for a one-time payment of about $2,000. A monthly payment options is also available. The policy covers a child and their future partner from age 18 to 35 in the event they need infertility treatments to become parents. Learn more about the plan which can be purchased online by any benevolent adult, such as a parent, grandparent, aunt or friend. We may not ever know if our child or their future partner will suffer infertility, but now we have a way to plan for their future.  

Planning for your child’s financial future: infertility insurance

Whether college, trade school, or military bound, you have no doubt started planning for your child’s future early. For most parents, one good way of preparing for a child’s future involves making sure that you are making wise financial decisions. If financial planning is an area where you could benefit from support, finding a financial advisor can be a key ingredient to your success. A trusted advisor to help you plan for your family’s financial future can be critical to your financial security as well as your child’s. It goes without saying that a firm financial foundation can be a source of safety, security and guard against unexpected challenges. 

Prioritizing financial education for your child

Educating your child in the fundamentals of budgeting, saving and smart spending can provide them with a strong foundation that will serve them well throughout their life. Helping your child set up a system for saving money and getting them into that habit of preparing for their own future will help them when they have their own family to support. It can start early by teaching a child to save up for a toy. When children get older, parents can help tweens and teenagers learn to manage some of their own expenses. They may receive an allowance for chores completed, for example. Greenlights, a debit card for kids, is one tool parents can use to teach older children about budgeting, saving and earning money in a way that fosters independence. There are many ways to encourage financial understanding and well-being, appropriate to a child’s age and maturity level.

Learn how to be a savvy shopper

A financial education is not complete without showing your child how to be a smart consumer. Teaching your child how to comparison shop, evaluate reviews and how to look for bargains can help them save a bundle. This can start when they are young when you take them with you to the grocery store. Give a child a small amount so they can decide which treat to purchase, and you’ll see how quickly they can calculate how to afford more than one! Real-world examples given over time can help them understand when the stakes are small how they can put in the work and planning to get what they want. When they are older and shopping for colleges, cars and weddings, they will already have learned the steps to take to afford larger purchases.  

How insurance can help mitigate financial risk

College, cars, and weddings aside, making sure your child is equipped to deal with emergency situations is also key. In addition to having enough savings, insurance is a way to guard against financial risk. Healthcare expenses can be expensive which is why we have health insurance. Unexpected job loss or layoff can prompt the use of unemployment insurance. There are plenty of opportunities to purchase additional insurance from health, life, travel, home, auto and infertility insurance. 

Teaching your child about how insurance works gives them important tools they will take into adulthood. When they are old enough to be on their own and have their own family, they will be financially equipped to deal with emergencies and it give them precious time and resources to respond to the situation. 

How health insurance can guard against uncertainty

Today, insurance plays a key role in creating a safety net for the future. Your health insurance for one, will offer your child security until the age of 26. This is the age when they can no longer be considered a dependent on their parent’s health insurance in most cases. If they do not have a full-time employer who can offer health insurance as a benefit, they can purchase a short-term policy to fill the gap, a plan from the healthcare marketplace or a public option. The Affordable Care Act mandates that health insurance plans offered on the healthcare marketplace cover 10 essential health benefits. It’s notable that not all health conditions are included. For example, treatment to resolve infertility is often excluded from health plans because of the expense. 

Can you help insure your child’s future family?

When planning for your child’s/grandchild’s future, you have no doubt dreamed of the day your child will have a family of his or her own. In a recent Harris Poll, more than 4 in 5 parents who still have children under 18 living at home (82%) say it is important to them for their children to have their own biological children one day. However, 12% of American couples struggle with infertility today. Your child or grandchild and his or her future spouse could struggle with the draining emotional and financial journey of infertility. And it is not always completely covered if at all by health insurance plans. But there is a new supplementary health insurance plan now to fill these coverage gaps. LifeSpring Insurance Services created the nation’s first Primary Infertility Assistance Policy to make infertility treatments affordable for more people—regardless of what health insurance your children have and who their future employers are. 

How does infertility insurance help a child’s financial future?

LifeSpring’s Primary Infertility Assistance Policy covers the couple. Specifically, it covers medicine, procedures and storage including IVF and IUI. It can complement an existing health plan and fill any coverage gaps. What’s more is that the cost of this policy is a fraction of the cost of the average cost of infertility treatments most couples endure. For a one-time payment of approximately $2,000, LifeSpring will provide $50,000 worth of infertility treatment coverage for your child and his or her future spouse or partner if they ever need it. It can be used with any coverage they might have and goes into effect with no deductible and no co-insurance. 

The LifeSpring policy can be gifted to a child by a caring adult, parent grandparent, aunt, uncle or friend. Purchasing a LifeSpring policy is a way to plan for a child’s financial future and their future family at the same time. 

The future is an unknown. But as parents and grandparents, our job is to plan ahead the best of our ability to prepare our children for their financial future. Learn more about this unique policy to see if it might be right for your family. Contact us if we can help you answer questions you have about the policy.