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Got health insurance? 1 in 4 millennials say ‘no’

It is now required under the Affordable Care Act that all Americans have health insurance, and yet about one in four people between the ages of 18 and 29, or 24 percent, do not have coverage according to a new report by InsuranceQuotes.com.

Obamacare website
Healthcare.gov website. (Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media NJ)

The report found that 16 percent of all adults do not have health coverage, and millennials are 10 percentage points more likely to lack health insurance than people age 30 and older.

“It is not just health insurance; millennials are behind the curve when it comes to renter’s, auto, life and disability insurance as well,” said Laura Adams, senior analyst with InsuranceQuotes.com. “I think this age group tends to be a little overconfident when it comes to their health and maybe even their financial future. When it comes to properties like houses and cars, the lack of coverage may be due to the fact that fewer of them are buying homes or cars.”

The lack of coverage can be very risky, according to Adams:

  • For example, only 12 percent of millennials have renter’s insurance. This coverage can be very inexpensive (around $10 per month in many cases). It provides liability coverage and replaces personal belongings if they are damaged or stolen.
  • Sixty-four percent of 18-to-29-year-olds lack life insurance. The most common explanation was that it costs too much, but $500,000 of 20-year-level term life insurance can cost less than $20 per month for a young adult. The second-most common response was, “I’m healthy and don’t need life insurance.”
  • Even car insurance is not particularly popular among millennials. Thirty-six percent of 18-to-29-year-olds do not have auto insurance. This might be because the number of young adult drivers has fallen in recent years, as other reports have found.

“What’s more surprising about this lack of coverage is that many young people are allowed to stay on their parents’ policies under Obamacare until they are 26 years old,” Adams said. “Just one trip to the hospital or one broken bone can leave you with a bill in the thousands of dollars. I think a lot of young people don’t think about the unexpected or the ‘what if,’ and what that could mean for them financially.”

To see the report in its entirety, click here.

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