What Will My Insurance Cost If I Quit Work?

Are you thinking about quitting our job but you don’t know what your health insurance will cost (or not sure if you can even obtain it) if you quit? You’re in good company. It is hard to estimate your health insurance costs because the exchanges aren’t geared to let you do that.

The Exchange

If you quit or lose your job for whatever reason, you have the option of keeping your current health insurance for 18 months through COBRA. After the 18 months is up, or if you decide not to use the COBRA option at all, the most likely case is that you will purchase your insurance through your state’s exchange website. What will that cost, you might ask? You might visit your state’s exchange to find out. Problem is, the exchange won’t give you an accurate answer unless you are in the Open Enrollment period. The exchange will give you the cost of various plans if you want to purchase them today under the Special Enrollment provision. Are the Special Enrollment terms indicative of what it will cost during open enrollment? Possibly, but unlikely.

Open Enrollment Is Coming

The good news is that the Open Enrollment period on the health exchanges is coming soon. Depending on your state, Open Enrollment starts in October or November and lasts for 30-60 days. During Open Enrollment, you will get a much better estimate of what type of health insurance you can obtain and what it will cost. You will need to answer a few questions online and perhaps act like you really want to buy the insurance right then, but at least it will provide you a better sense of what your health insurance will cost.


Use the upcoming Open Enrollment period to daydream about quitting your job. Take the information you can find on your state’s exchange during Open Enrollment and plug it into your cost spreadsheet to calculate what it might cost for you to quit your job. It won’t be 100% accurate but it will give you a decent estimate of what your health insurance will cost.