WalletPop experts answer your questions about healthcare and tax prep

Question mark girl
Question mark girl

With so many changes in healthcare and taxes these days, it's prudent to plan ahead and talk to as many experts as you can before bills come due. WalletPop experts are on hand to help. Here, they tackle questions on shopping for a new medical plan and finding the right accountant.

Question:
My retired parents, who live in Virginia, need my help in finding them a new health care plan. They require a lot of medication, and their current insurance only covers generic versions of their pills. My father needs one medicine to be the name brand. How can I help them while I live in New York? What if I switch plans and the new insurance company decides not to cover the name brand after all? Is there any protection for my parents?
-- Maria, Brooklyn
, N.Y.

Answer from Josh King, general counsel for Avvo, a free online legal directory
There's nothing in the new healthcare law that limits or controls pricing or coverage for name-brand pharmaceuticals. However, if you find a plan that covers the medicine you need now, it's unlikely to change down the road. While you may not have a law protecting you, customer pressure and the fact that medicine usually loses pricing power as newer remedies become available will likely lead to coverage being retained. You should also explore whether the medicine is cheaper via a Canadian pharmacy.