Consumer Alert: Rising costs of health insurance

Posted: Updated:
EDISON -

Health insurance can be very expensive and is not expected to be getting any cheaper next year.

But experts say that it could cost more depending on where you live.

Insurance companies in New Jersey are asking regulators for a lower rate increase than most states, an average of 6 percent. This would bring the average premium to $437 a month.

“In New Jersey, they're saying…we're going to impose a penalty if they don't have insurance. That’s helped people keep the rates lower,” says Consumer Reports’ Donna Rosato.

In Connecticut, individual health insurance premiums were already more expensive, and now insurers are asking regulators for a 12 percent increase to $610.

There is a battle over individual health insurance rates in New York. Insurers requested a massive 24 percent rate increase to an average of $627. However the state denied this request.

“Gov. [Andrew] Cuomo said we don't want insurance regulators to approve that,” says Rosato.

Regulators instead slashed the increase to 8.6 percent, which would put the average premium at $550. This may be good news for next year. But insurers say it may just force them to raise rates higher in the years to come.

Experts say that it is important to keep in mind that the figures above are all averages. Prices will vary depending on age, health and coverage.

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