Nothing rocked our world more than when Johnny and I became parents. To say we were consumed (both times) is an understatement. Consumed with blissful love, yes. Lots and lots of that. But we were also consumed in pretty much every other way — time, attention, sleep (or deprivation of), patience (or lack of because of the latter), diapers, etc. During those first few weeks (okay, months) of having a newborn, even a simple act like showering or vacuuming the house or even eating took advance planning to make it happen.
But one aspect of having a new baby that hasn’t been all-consuming for either of our bundles of joy has been the hospital bill. The first time, Johnny’s employer’s insurance covered every cent. Heavens to Betsy! That was amazing. But this go around, we owed almost $4,000 out of pocket. Yeesh. But even this second time around, paying the bill was pretty painless. And it’s all thanks to getting paid to have a baby by our supplemental insurance — Aflac.
I should probably stop here and clarify that this is not a sponsored post — in any way. We’ve gotten a ton of questions about how our Aflac insurance works after we have a baby, and now that Wynn is almost three months old (where did the time go?!), I finally have a moment to share just that.
As I mentioned above, Aflac is supplemental insurance. In other words, we have a primary insurance that received the hospital bills for the birth and hospital stay. Whatever our primary insurance didn’t cover, Johnny and I were responsible to pay out of our own pockets. The end. Except, not really, because that’s when our supplemental insurance came into play.
Once our hospital bill was finalized, we filed a claim with Aflac. The process was fairly straightforward and simple. I printed off and signed a HIPAA release form from Aflac’s website and mailed it to them. They then requested my billing records from the hospital. And a few days later, we received a check in the mail for $3,600. Magic!
That probably leaves you scratching your head, wondering what the heck happened. These questions and answers should help clarify things:
So how does Aflac insurance work? On our end, we pay a monthly premium, which we have on auto-pay through my bank. On their end, when I have a baby, they pay us. Technically, the reason they’re paying out isn’t that I’m having a baby. I have two policies: Personal Sickness and Hospital Indemnity. Together, those two plans work favorably for a pregnant woman who is about to undergo a major medical procedure (giving birth: check) requiring hospitalization (two nights of recovery and bland hospital food: check).One has a $30 premium, and the other has a $50 premium, combining to equal $80 per month.
Is it worth it? It all depends on when you have children. From the time we started our Aflac policy until Sally’s birth, we paid 30 months of premiums, or $2,400. We received a $4,100 payout, netting $1,700. From the time we had Sally until Wynn was born, we paid 27 months of premiums. And while I paid $2,160 in premiums, we received $3,600 in cash back, netting $1,440. We like to think of our Aflac premium as a monthly savings account toward having a new bab (and it doesn’t hurt when that savings account has a 69% interest rate). At the end of the day, we’ll still break even as long as we have a baby within 45 months of each premium cycle.
How do I sign up? Originally, I signed up through my employer, but now we just pay Aflac on our own. Since it’s been a while since I signed up, anyone can begin the sign-up process and get a quote for Aflac through their website.
What are the rules? The only rule I know of is that from the time Aflac’s insurance kicks in until a baby is born, there must be at least a 10-month gap. In other words, you can’t sign up for Aflac if you’re already pregnant. And you have to wait at least a month before becoming pregnant. Please note that this is based on information from a few years ago, so check with your Aflac agent to confirm.
That’s pretty much all the scoop I can give. From our perspective, having Aflac was been a well-timed pay day and worth every penny. Aflac makes the process fast and painless, and we’ve been really happy with their customer service. I only have our own perspective we can share, so we’d love to hear anyone else’s experience! Has anyone else used Aflac or another supplemental insurance to help pay the baby bills? Please share!
We had AFLAC and the only minor problem we had each time was some of the hospital stay issues (never had a problem with their short term disability that was always easy). They just needed some paperwork that we had to specifically request.
I have recommended AFLAC to all our friends who are thinking about having kids in the next couple years. I make sure to tell them about the waiting period too just so they aren’t paying for something they won’t be able to use.
We recommend it to everyone, too! It’s been great both times.
I tried to get that same insurance with Aflac. They won’t sell it to everyone, it has to be through an employer. It seems that because you got it through your employer, you were able to keep it. But just FYI. 🙂
Ah, interesting. Good to know! Thanks!
I didn’t have to get my Aflac through an employer, just got it on my own about 2 years ago.
AFLAC was such a blessing when I had my second baby! I think we got back somewhere around $2,400. When we decide to have another baby I will most definitely be signing up for Aflac again.
Sure you pay monthly but we got back way more than I paid in premiums and we received our money so fast.
Same here. It’s definitely one of those big-picture decisions. Paying the monthly premium is no fun, but in the long run, it saves a ton of money!
As a Canadian, it still blows my mind that people would have to factor in a cost to physically having a baby. I have supplemental insurance to our government coverage, but it pays for things like dental, drugs, physio etc. Not having a baby! Now, I know we pay for this through our taxes, but I can’t imagine the stress of a. having a baby, and b. getting a $4000 bill from the hospital. Glad you were able to offset most of it!
Yep! It can be pretty stressful… I feel like if anything, government should incentivize people having children since growing the next generation is what will stimulate the economy down the road, etc. But it is what it is!
aflac saved us when my second baby was born early and needed to be in the NICU for two weeks… They actually ended up paying out $17,000 to us! That was such a blessing for us! I’m expecting my fourth baby in a couple of months and it’s so nice knowing we have Aflac to help with the cost!
Wow! That’s so great. Thanks for mentioning that… if anything doesn’t go according to plan, it’s a great safety net. Also, congrats on baby #4!!
I actually just signed up for this plan with AFLAC through my employer. The monthly premiums were a lot less than I was expecting, I think perhaps because the short term disability portion is based on my income (not being the highest). And yes, the 10 month rule still applies to both plans. I signed up at the beginning of July, but the insurance does not officially begin coverage until August 1st, so I must wait until at least September 1st (just to be safe) to get pregnant. I’m very excited!
Yay! I’m excited for you, too! You’ll be so happy you have it. I had no idea what I was signing up for at first, but it’s been so great to have both times.
I also tried to sign up with Aflac as we are planning our 2nd baby and it is only available through an employer. Since we do own our on business, I will be trying that route as well. I’ll keep you posted:)
Good to know!
The policy must work different in California, because we get paid up to 12 weeks of disability through the state. SO Aflac said they would only supplement six weeks worth, not in addition to what the state pays. When I did the math, I was pretty much breaking even, or risking losing money if we didn’t get pregnant by a certain date. I decided not to do it, and just save up ourselves instead.
Hmm… I haven’t looked into their disability plans, but their hospital and sickness indemnity plans are what we used for both pregnancies. It has nothing to do with the postpartum period, but rather the actual giving birth and staying in the hospital. Hope that helps clear things up!
Hi Johnny and Joanna! I wanted to follow-up regarding my sign-up meeting with our local Aflac representative. First, I called and wanted to enroll in the Hospital Indemnity and the personal sickness plans. Since it is REQUIRED that you enroll through your employer, I had to speak with another representative. My husband and I own our own business and we were able to enroll our employees at no cost to the company! And, if you ever leave your employer, your policy isn’t cancelled which I thought was a great feature.
I’m really excited because our Aflac representative showed us how much we could have been paid out with our first baby! Wow, why didn’t I know this sooner? As we plan for our second baby, I have peace of mind that we will be able to file a claim and I know that our premiums (which are fairly affordable) will be well worth the investment and any other medical event that may happen to our family. Thank you guys for sharing your info about Aflac. I would have never inquired about this and I’m very grateful for these blog posts:)
Yay! So happy to hear you guys were able to get it! And good to know for sure that it is required to enroll through an employer. I was able to keep my plan after I left my company, so I assumed anyone could get it. Very cool to hear your employees can enroll at no cost to you. Thanks for the info!
Expecting Baby #2 any day now and we luckily have Aflac for this pregnancy. I know this post is old, but my question is, since this will be my last little, when do you cancel the policy, obviously after bills have come in, but should I pay through the rest of the year?