We both have health cards so what is the best health plan for us?


Q My wife and I are in our mid 70s. We have health insurance with Laya Healthcare. I was diagnosed with diabetes three years ago and my wife has an underactive thyroid. Our doctor will take care of this. We both have full health cards. When I was diagnosed I called Laya and they recommended Flex 500 explore for €2,134 per year for both of us, with a €450 excess. Our doctor mainly sends us for consultations that are not covered by our plan. We spent €600 last year. I feel like with the plan we have we don’t have any health coverage at all unless we go to a hospital. Should I stay with this plan or switch upon renewal?

A We asked Dermot Goode of and he recommends changing coverage based on your age and medical history. The problem with the current plan is that it has very high deductibles for private hospital admissions – a €500 deductible applies to each admission and this reduces to €150 for each daily case. Mr Goode said it was correct that this was a hospital benefit plan with no guaranteed outpatient reimbursement, which did not meet your needs. If you want similar coverage with lower deductibles, you can consider the Laya Essential Health 300 program, which costs €1,094 compared to €1,031 a piece in the current plan. However, he recommends you consider the corporate program Laya Simply Connect for €1,361 each. Deductibles are much lower at €150 per admission or €50 for outpatient procedures, and this plan includes guaranteed reimbursements for a range of eligible outpatient expenses with no deductible of up to €500 per member, Mr Goode said.

Q I signed up for a subscription about two years ago and now I can’t find the account details to cancel. What can I do?

A This is a fairly common problem, according to Frank Conway, founder of financial wellness provider MoneyWhizz and qualified financial advisor. In general, it should be possible to contact the service provider and tell them that you no longer wish to subscribe to the product or service they are selling. However, this is not always the case. For some reason there may be service providers that make it difficult to contact them to cancel this subscription. One of the options available to you is through the credit card or debit card issuer. For example, in a recent case, the subscriber originally purchased a service from a foreign company using their Bank of Ireland credit card. The company was legitimate, but there were no obvious ways for the customer to cancel the service, Mr Conway said. So they called Bank of Ireland’s credit card services to ask about their options. The bank representative pointed out that you could give an instruction not to make any more payments to the company in the future, i.e. add a note to the credit card account. So the next time the subscription comes up for renewal, the person could request a chargeback from the service provider. If it is a legitimate company then it should resolve the matter as non-payment or chargeback on your end should mean the service will be cancelled.

Q I had small investments in bank stocks (AIB, BOI and Anglo) all of which were lost during the 2008 financial crash. I have never claimed these losses for capital gains tax purposes, but am now looking to sell some stocks that are generating a capital gain. Are the losses incurred years ago offset against the current capital gains?

A In principle, the loss must be realized. This means the assets must be disposed of by CGT (Capital Gains Tax), according to Mark Corcoran The loss is deducted in the assessment year, i.e. when the assets are sold. The loss will be offset against eligible profits in the same tax year, he said. Any unused eligible loss can be carried forward to future reference years. CGT losses cannot be carried back for previous tax years. If you have no taxable gains in the same tax year in which you made a loss, you are not required to declare that loss on your tax return. You should keep evidence of the loss incurred in case the IRS disputes your claim, Mr Corcoran said. The tax office may ask you to provide a refund for the loss suffered in order to accept your claim and set off that loss Your current Eligible Earnings. We both have health cards so what is the best health plan for us?

Fry Electronics Team

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