The COVID-19 outbreak has left many Texas physicians wondering if their insurance covers losses caused by the pandemic. Other TMA members have been contacting us seeking assistance with making changes and adjustments to their coverage. We at TMA Insurance Trust want you to know we’re here to support you during this difficult time.
We are using a combination of reduced office staff and staff working remotely. Our office hours will remain 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM CST. Our toll-free line remains open and a staff member or advisor will return your call as soon as possible.
The following are some of the most frequently asked questions we have been receiving from members. We are working closely with each our insurance partners and will continually update this page as new information becomes available.
Employee Health Insurance
Q: I am applying for an SBA loan and the PPP (Paycheck Protection Program), can you send me a report for the payments of the health insurance for my employees for the years 2019 and 2020?
A: Yes. In most cases we have access to past invoices and can send this to you right away. With a couple of carriers, we have to request the information from them. They generally are very quick to respond and tend to send the information within one business day, following receipt of the request.
Q: How many hours a week will my employees need to work to keep their health insurance?
A: For a limited time and with most carriers, employees are not required to work any hours at all and can still maintain their health insurance coverage. This information is subject to change. If it changes in the future, we will update this page with the latest available information.
Q: How do I cancel my employees’ health insurance?
A: You can email your request to TMA Insurance Trust at firstname.lastname@example.org or fax it to us at (512) 370-1799, or contact the carrier directly, whichever is easiest for you.
Q: Can I continue to pay the health insurance premiums for employees that I need to furlough?
Q: During these tough economic times, can you help us find any ways to reduce our health insurance premiums?
A: At least one carrier is allowing groups to change to a leaner plan. However keep in mind, this plan will most likely have higher deductibles. But, the premium collection process as a whole continues on a normal schedule.
Q: If we cancel an employee’s or their dependent’s coverage now, can they re-enroll prior to the renewal date?
A: Some carriers will allow an employee to rejoin the health plan when they are rehired and are waiving the new hire probationary period. Other plans will apply the waiting period, but the employee can still rejoin before the group’s annual renewal. We encourage you to contact your TMA Insurance Trust agent for information specific to your group plan.
Q: My employees have been furloughed and I can’t afford to pay for their coverage. Can TMA Insurance Trust help them get health insurance?
A: Yes, we can help an employee apply for an individual plan. The only requirement is the employee must apply within 30 days of losing their employer’s group coverage.
Business Overhead Expense Insurance
Q: Can I file a claim if I close my practice due to the stay-in-place order?
A: Business Overhead Expense insurance is designed to pay a benefit when the policyholder is disabled and cannot practice due to an illness or an injury. It does not cover business interruption due to the stay-in-place order.
Q: Does this policy help cover my office expenses during the COVID-19 crisis?
A: If you become disabled from COVID-19 or any other covered injury or illness, and cannot practice for more than 30 consecutive days, you can be approved to receive benefits from your business overhead expense plan. Your first payment will be made retroactively back to the date when you first became disabled. Furthermore, your premium payments will be waived while you are disabled so there would be no cost to you while receiving benefits.
Q: I'm concerned I may not have enough life insurance. How do I get a quote and apply for coverage?
A: Contact TMA Insurance today and we can start the process of helping you find a life insurance plan that fits your needs.
Q: How is underwriting being handled if I apply for coverage and I need a medical exam?
A: Some companies are allowing for more time than normal to complete exams, while other companies are offering possible “no-exam” policies. Contact a TMA Insurance Trust advisor for more information about specific carriers and coverage amounts.
Q: Is COVID-19 covered by the TMA Member Term Life Insurance Plan?
A: Yes, COVID-19 is covered under the TMA Member Term Life plan.
Long Term Disability Insurance
Q: I have some coverage, but I think I need to increase my protection. How do I get a quote and apply for coverage?
A: Contact TMA Insurance today and we can start the process of helping you add coverage to your current disability policy or finding a new plan that fits your needs.
Q: Is COVID-19 covered under my disability plan?
A: A disability policy is designed to pay a benefit in the event that the policyholder becomes disabled and cannot work due to illness or injury. If you become disabled from COVID-19 and cannot practice medicine beyond the waiting period outlined in your policy, your claim should be approved. Contact a TMA Insurance Trust advisor if you have questions regarding your specific policy.
Q: I lost my employer’s disability insurance. What options do I have?
A: TMA Members can apply for up to $4,000 of TMA Member Long Term Disability Insurance without income verification. The TMA Member plan also includes a 25% premium credit that will reduce the amount you pay for your policy. Contact an advisor to discuss this option and other individual disability options available to you.
Q: I am not working and can’t pay my TMA Member Disability insurance premium. Can TMA Insurance Trust help me?
We understand this pandemic is severely impacting the lives of TMA members. For those members who need it, we have implemented a 90-day grace period on our next billing cycle, May 1, 2020. Feel free to contact a TMA Insurance advisor for more information.
Critical Illness Insurance
Q: Would the TMA Member Critical Illness plan cover illness secondary to COVID-19?
A: The short answer is “yes”. But, the circumstances would have to fit into the terms of the contract. For example, if the COVID-19 causes the doctor to have “Major Organ Failure” or be diagnosed as “Terminal Illness”, they could be eligible for the benefit. COVID-19 would be treated the same as any other disease or condition would cause those ultimate conditions.
Standing By, Ready to Help
Be assured that during this difficult time TMA Insurance Trust is here to help you. If you have questions, concerns or need to make adjustments in your coverage, our experienced advisors will give you solid advice and a helping hand. Our advisors are standing by. We have over 60 years of experience in helping Texas physicians with their insurance needs. We’re in this together, and we’re here for you when you need us most.