If you're turning 31 and you don't have health insurance yet, it's high time you thought about getting covered.
While insurance is completely optional, anyone who decides that they want hospital cover from an Australian registered health fund following their 31st birthday is in for a nasty surprise if they don't get in quick.
That surprise is called Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) and, like the Medicare Levy Surcharge, its another of the government's methods for encouraging people to take out a private health insurance policy early.
Basically, anyone who decides to organise a private health insurance plan after July 1 following their 31st birthday will have to pay a 'loading' – an extra fee – on top of the premium already required from their hospital cover provider.
This loading equates to two per cent "for every year you are aged over 30", according to the Australian government's Private Health Insurance Ombudsman.
So, if you decide to opt for hospital cover at, say, the age of 42, you'll be paying the premium of whatever hospital cover insurance policy you've chosen PLUS an extra 24 per cent.
It therefore pays to get in quick when it comes to private health insurance. Don't hesitate – call HICA today to compare your insurance options.