Monadarling’s Blog

Archive for the ‘Visa & Immigration Stories’ Category

Identity theft -1Identity theft may be the white caller crime/scam that could catch you unaware. But there are quite a few simple steps that could safeguard you from becoming a victim.

1. Always, always review your credit information— whether annually or monthly. When reviewing your report, check for lines of credit that you don’t remember opening. If you find any suspicious activity, you should immediately dispute items in question with the credit bureau (you’ll have to contact all three) and let your creditor know you suspect theft. You can also put “fraud alert” on your file to let potential creditors know that you may have been or may become a victim of identity theft. A fraud alert is effective against identity theft because it tells creditors to follow specific procedures, thereby making it more difficult for someone to get credit in your name.

2. Consumers who want continuous monitoring of their credit information also have the option of using an identity protection service, which banks sometimes offer to their customers. In addition to monitoring your credit files as reported from credit agencies, these services can send e-mail alerts of any changes to your credit information, access your credit score, and provide identity theft insurance, which reimburses you for the expense of restoring your credit.

3. Keeping your personal information out of the hands of identity thieves reduces your risk, so use a cross shredder in your home or office. Also never let social security number out whether on phone or in person unless it is really important. The credit card offers you receive in the mail should also be shredded to ensure someone can’t apply for a pre-approved card in your name.

4. Don’t carry your Social Security card, passport, or birth certificate in your wallet or purse. Also, only carry as many credit cards as are absolutely necessary. It has also been suggested that you photocopy everything you carry in your wallet to make canceling things easier in the event that your wallet is stolen.

5. Guard deposit slips as closely as you do checks. Not only do they have your name, address and account number printed on them, but they can also be used to withdraw money from your account. All a thief has to do is write a bad check, deposit it into your account and use the “less cash received” line to withdraw your money.

6. Internet may be an attractive option when it comes to shopping quickly, you can make sure that the transactions are safe.

*

Use the latest Internet browser. This software has built-in encryption capabilities that scramble the information you send to a server. Using the most recent browser ensures that the data is protected using the latest encryption technology.
*

Look for digital certificates that authenticate the entity you are dealing with. Independent services like VeriSign will authenticate the identity of the Web site you are visiting. Web sites that use this service (usually those that sell items or services online) will have the VeriSign logo. By clicking on the logo, you can be assured that the site is legitimate, rather than a clone of the legitimate company set up to collect your personal and financial information.
*

Read the privacy policy. The information you enter on the Web site should be kept confidential. Make sure you read the company’s privacy policy to ensure that your personal information won’t be sold to others. Services like Trust-E review a company’s privacy policy (for a fee) and then allow the company to post the Trust-E logo if its privacy policy follows certain industry standards for consumer protection.

The H-3 visa is for individuals who will come to the US to participate in a training program. There is no numerical limit to the number of H-3 visas issued. In order to qualify this visa, the petition must evidence the following:
the proposed training is not available in the beneficiary’s home country;

the beneficiary will not be placed in a position which is in the normal operation of the business, and in which citizens and resident alien workers are regularly employed;

the beneficiary will not be productively employed except as incidental to training; and

the training will benefit the beneficiary in pursuing a career outside the US.

Spouses and children of H-3 visa holders may enter and remain in the US in H4 status. H4 visa holders may attend school in the US but cannot accept employment.

The H-3 trainee is a non-immigrant who seeks to enter the United States at the invitation of an organization or individual for the purpose of receiving training in any field of endeavor, such as agriculture, commerce, communications, finance, government, transportation, or the professions, as well as training in a purely industrial establishment. This category shall not apply to physicians, who are statutorily ineligible to use H3 classification in order to receive any type of graduate medical education or training.

Note: Special Exchange Visitors may also apply for non immigrant visas under the H-3 category. A Special Exchange Visitor is one who seeks to enter the U.S. to gain practical training in educating children with physical, mental, or emotional disabilities. The foreign national must have a foreign residence that he/she has no intention of abandoning, and may stay in the U.S. for up to 18 months. Only 50 foreign nationals per year may enter into the U.S. in the Special Exchange Visitor category.

To Qualify you must prove that:

You are not receiving graduate medical education or training in the US

Your do not have the opportunity to receive similar training in your home country.

You need this training to advance your career outside US

You will not be productively employed unless it is necessary to the training

The training offered does not employ U.S. citizen and resident workers

saving_medical_care_090304_mnFor many of us, despite having a medical insurance, we end up spending hundreds of dollars for out-of-pocket medical expenses. Although we take care selecting the right plan with the right coverage for the family in order to save hundreds, if not thousands, there still are many ways to cut costs as well.

1 Ask For A Deal: Call your insurer’s customer care service number and ask about the rates it pays physicians in your area, which are typically lower than the sticker price set by providers. Then ask your doctor if he’ll accept a similar amount. The rate that your doctor charges isn’t set in stone

2 Get the Facts: The more you know about the real cost of your care, the better you’ll be able to negotiate discounts. Costs for 30 common hospital procedures can be found at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/HealthCareConInit/02_Hospital.asp#TopOfPage, the website of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or you can pay $7.95 for medical cost reports from HealthGrades, a ratings company. Large insurers like Aetna, Cigna and United Healthcare have also begun to post rates online for members, though not for every area of the country.

3 Pay Up Front, In Cash: If you shoulder your own medical bill, paying in advance of treatment can get you a 10% discount.

4 Look For Mistakes: As many as eight out of 10 hospital bills contain errors, increasing the tab by 25% on average. Keep a log of every test and medication you get, and check it against your medical file, which you can order from the hospital’s billing office. If you spot an error, send a certified letter requesting a corrected bill, and a copy of all documentation to your insurer.

5 Check Up Before You Check In: Radiologists, anesthesiologists and other specialists don’t always accept the same insurance as the doctor who admits you to the hospital. Always confirm whether all those who are treating you are covered by your insurance.

6 Track Your Spending: Use programs such as Quicken’s Medical Expense Manager to track your spending and alert you to potential savings such as overlooked tax deductions and possible billing errors..

7 Follow Doctors Orders: Simply doing what you’re told can save you your out-of-pocket share of the average $8,200 cost of a hospital stay.

8 Equip Yourself : Hospitals charge a significant markup on equipment like crutches or braces, so you’re almost always better off buying them on your own.

9 Visit A Retail Health Clinic: Visit a walk-in clinic found at retail stores like CVS and Wal-Mart for minor illness such as Got an earache or upset stomach to save up to 25%.

10 Choose Wisely: Read the fine print on your plan to find out your insurer’s requirements for referrals and pre-certification. If you have to use out-of-network providers, call your insurer’s pre-certification department to explain your situation and ask for coverage at in-network rates.

11 Don’t be denied: Don’t just let it go if your insurer denied your claim. Fight back by calling customer service or putting your appeal in writing. Document everything; including the times of calls and the names of the reps you spoke with.

12. Check yourself out: Before signing up for a new insurance policy, go to MIB.com to see whether this insurance industry antifraud group has a file on you. Request a free copy to make sure the information provided about your health status is right. If you have a high-deductible health plan (at least $1,050 for individuals; $2,100 for families), you are eligible to fund a health savings account (HSA).

13 Stay insured: Leaving your job next year? Switch to the lowest-cost plan during this year’s open enrollment. Then, after you quit, federal rules (known as COBRA) will let you stay on your employer’s health plan for up to 18 months, although you’ll usually have to pay the full cost.

14 Be flexible: Add up your co-pays, deductibles and other out-of-pocket medical expenses from last year to figure out how much to put into your flexible spending account. For every $1,000 you put in, you’ll slash about $300 in taxes.

15 Grab generics: Whenever you can, opt for generic drugs, which on average cost less than a third as much as their brand-name counterparts. Call your drug insurer and ask if you can order your prescriptions directly from the plan, which can save you 15% to 35% on your monthly co-payments at the pharmacy. Ask your doctor if you can safely split a higher-dosage pill in half as high-dose pills are generally priced the same as their low-dose counterparts. If there is no generic version of a brand name, ask your doc for a cheaper alternative.

16 Ask for samples: Your doctor may be able to supply you with several weeks’ worth of medication at no charge.

Also look for deals online, Walmart and CVS have a lot of deals at times too.

Lastly, take care of your health by:

*
Ensuring less stress
*
Stubbing that butt
*
Putting that cork on
*
Getting more active
*
Eating at home or carrying that home made lunch
*
Drink from the tap
*
Staying hygienic
*
Child and adult proofing your home
*
Questioning your tests and not hesitating in going for a second opinion

To Read More Visa Stories Click Here

Slash Your Medical Bills

For many of us, despite having a medical insurance, we end up spending hundreds of dollars for out-of-pocket medical expenses. Although we take care selecting the right plan with the right coverage for the family in order to save hundreds, if not thousands, there still are many ways to cut costs as well.

1 Ask For A Deal: Call your insurer’s customer care service number and ask about the rates it pays physicians in your area, which are typically lower than the sticker price set by providers. Then ask your doctor if he’ll accept a similar amount. The rate that your doctor charges isn’t set in stone

2 Get the Facts: The more you know about the real cost of your care, the better you’ll be able to negotiate discounts. Costs for 30 common hospital procedures can be found at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/HealthCareConInit/02_Hospital.asp#TopOfPage, the website of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or you can pay $7.95 for medical cost reports from HealthGrades, a ratings company. Large insurers like Aetna, Cigna and United Healthcare have also begun to post rates online for members, though not for every area of the country.

3 Pay Up Front, In Cash: If you shoulder your own medical bill, paying in advance of treatment can get you a 10% discount.

billsFor many of us, despite having a medical insurance, we end up spending hundreds of dollars for out-of-pocket medical expenses. Although we take care selecting the right plan with the right coverage for the family in order to save hundreds, if not thousands, there still are many ways to cut costs as well.

1 Ask For A Deal: Call your insurer’s customer care service number and ask about the rates it pays physicians in your area, which are typically lower than the sticker price set by providers. Then ask your doctor if he’ll accept a similar amount. The rate that your doctor charges isn’t set in stone

2 Get the Facts: The more you know about the real cost of your care, the better you’ll be able to negotiate discounts. Costs for 30 common hospital procedures can be found at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/HealthCareConInit/02_Hospital.asp#TopOfPage, the website of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or you can pay $7.95 for medical cost reports from HealthGrades, a ratings company. Large insurers like Aetna, Cigna and United Healthcare have also begun to post rates online for members, though not for every area of the country.

3 Pay Up Front, In Cash: If you shoulder your own medical bill, paying in advance of treatment can get you a 10% discount.

4 Look For Mistakes: As many as eight out of 10 hospital bills contain errors, increasing the tab by 25% on average. Keep a log of every test and medication you get, and check it against your medical file, which you can order from the hospital’s billing office. If you spot an error, send a certified letter requesting a corrected bill, and a copy of all documentation to your insurer.

5 Check Up Before You Check In: Radiologists, anesthesiologists and other specialists don’t always accept the same insurance as the doctor who admits you to the hospital. Always confirm whether all those who are treating you are covered by your insurance.

6 Track Your Spending: Use programs such as Quicken’s Medical Expense Manager to track your spending and alert you to potential savings such as overlooked tax deductions and possible billing errors..

7 Follow Doctors Orders: Simply doing what you’re told can save you your out-of-pocket share of the average $8,200 cost of a hospital stay.

8 Equip Yourself : Hospitals charge a significant markup on equipment like crutches or braces, so you’re almost always better off buying them on your own.

9 Visit A Retail Health Clinic: Visit a walk-in clinic found at retail stores like CVS and Wal-Mart for minor illness such as Got an earache or upset stomach to save up to 25%.

10 Choose Wisely: Read the fine print on your plan to find out your insurer’s requirements for referrals and pre-certification. If you have to use out-of-network providers, call your insurer’s pre-certification department to explain your situation and ask for coverage at in-network rates.

11 Don’t be denied: Don’t just let it go if your insurer denied your claim. Fight back by calling customer service or putting your appeal in writing. Document everything; including the times of calls and the names of the reps you spoke with.

12. Check yourself out: Before signing up for a new insurance policy, go to MIB.com to see whether this insurance industry antifraud group has a file on you. Request a free copy to make sure the information provided about your health status is right. If you have a high-deductible health plan (at least $1,050 for individuals; $2,100 for families), you are eligible to fund a health savings account (HSA).

13 Stay insured: Leaving your job next year? Switch to the lowest-cost plan during this year’s open enrollment. Then, after you quit, federal rules (known as COBRA) will let you stay on your employer’s health plan for up to 18 months, although you’ll usually have to pay the full cost.

14 Be flexible: Add up your co-pays, deductibles and other out-of-pocket medical expenses from last year to figure out how much to put into your flexible spending account. For every $1,000 you put in, you’ll slash about $300 in taxes.

15 Grab generics: Whenever you can, opt for generic drugs, which on average cost less than a third as much as their brand-name counterparts. Call your drug insurer and ask if you can order your prescriptions directly from the plan, which can save you 15% to 35% on your monthly co-payments at the pharmacy. Ask your doctor if you can safely split a higher-dosage pill in half as high-dose pills are generally priced the same as their low-dose counterparts. If there is no generic version of a brand name, ask your doc for a cheaper alternative.

16 Ask for samples: Your doctor may be able to supply you with several weeks’ worth of medication at no charge.

Also look for deals online, Walmart and CVS have a lot of deals at times too.

Lastly,

*
Take care of your health by:
*
Ensure less stress.
*
Stubbing that butt
*
Putting that cork on
*
Get Moving
*
Eating at home or carrying that home made lunch
*
Drink from the tap
*
Stay hygienic
*
Child and adult proof your home
*
Question your tests and don’t hesitate in going for a second opinion….

Do Visit www.monadarling.com/vibes

A Unique Social network to Connect with friends, know about events ,classifieds in your area , forums and more.Click Here to join Mona’s Vibes Now

The doctor is done when he prescribes you the medicine, so is the pharmacist once he hands over the medicine. But there still are many things to take care of to make sure you get the right medicine and prevent some very common medical errors. Medical errors are mistakes that can happen with your health care. Medical errors can hurt or even kill people. Here are some very common medical errors that have been listed out especially for you:

Getting the wrong medicine is a medical error.

* You can help protect yourself and your family from medical errors. The most important way you can do this is to talk. Talk to your doctor, nurse, and other health care workers.
* Tell them important things about your health.
* Ask them questions.
* Make decisions about your health care with them.

What Can You Do To Make Sure You Get the Right Medicine?

Error: Your doctor or drugstore gives you the wrong kind of medicine.

* Bring all your medicines with you to show your doctor. This includes things like cold medicine, aspirin, vitamins, and herbs. This will help your doctor make sure that your new medicine does not cause problems with ones you already take.
* Tell your doctor if you have any allergies. Also tell about any problems your medicines have caused —such as a rash or stomach ache.
* When your doctor gives you a prescription, look at the writing. Is it easy to read? If you can’t make out the letters, the drugstore may not be able to either.
* When you pick up your medicine at the drugstore, make sure it is what your doctor ordered.

What Can You Do To Make Sure You Take the Right Amount?

Error: You take too much or too little of your medicine.

Ask your doctor:

* At what times of the day should I take this medicine?
* Do I need to take it with food?
* How much should I take each time? That is, how many pills or how much liquid?
* If you have more questions when you pick up your medicine at the drugstore, ask.
* Know how to measure your liquid medicine. The label might use the word “teaspoon.” But do not use spoons you eat with to measure your medicine. These do not hold the right amount. Instead, use a special container to measure your liquid medicine. You can find things like these at your drugstore.

What Can You Do To Help Yourself Get Better Faster?

Error: You get sick from staying in the hospital.

* Illness can spread in hospitals when health care workers do not wash their hands or wear gloves. It is okay to ask anyone who touches you whether they have washed their hands.
* Some foods can make you sicker. Know what foods your doctor doesn’t want you to eat.

What Can You Do To Make Sure the Doctor Operates On the Right Part of Your Body?

Error: The doctor operates on the wrong part of the body.

* Talk to your doctor about the surgery. Ask what will be done. Ask where it will be done and the name of the surgeon.
* Ask if the surgeon does this kind of surgery often. Ask if many people have this surgery done at that hospital or clinic. People do better if they have an experienced surgeon.
* Ask your surgeon to make a mark with a pen before the surgery on the part of your body where the surgery will happen. Some doctors will sign their initials on the right part.

You Can Help Prevent Medical Errors

Remember: The most important way to do this is to talk. Talk to your doctor, nurse, and other health care workers. Bringing a friend or family member along can help.

Five Steps to Safer Health Care

1. Speak up if you have questions or concerns.

2. Keep a list of all the medicines you take.

3. Make sure you get the results of any test or procedure.

4. Talk with your doctor and health care team about your options (choices) if you need hospital care.

5. Make sure you understand what will happen if you need surgery…. Click Here To Read More

students_credit_cardsFor many of us college was the first time we used plastic money. College being the first time that we are independently responsible for finances, and obtaining a credit card is an experience that can make or break our financial future. Credit cards can establish good credit or drive a student deep into debt. Not only do students have to avoid the temptation of using their credit card like cash, but they are also inundated by special offers and gifts for opening new accounts.

Like a friend of mine who reviewed her credit report shortly after graduation; she was with a dozen or so credit card accounts that she didn’t even know she had. You know what they were from? Each time she’d fill out credit card applications to receive free t-shirts and discounts at retail stores she was actually being approved for a new credit card.

Despite all the criticism about college students and credit, now is a good time to get your first card and start building your credit history, as long as you can be sure to pay off the card each month. Graduating with thousands of dollars of debt is a bad idea, especially when you’re also paying off student loans and trying to make ends meet on an entry-level salary. It is important to be educated about your options and how their use can affect your credit score and finances.

College students are prime targets for banks and credit lenders, so don’t be lured by free flat screens, laptops and t-shirt offers while on campus. Credit companies prey on college students who are anxious to spend money, have not developed any money habits, and are generally naïve as to how credit cards work. Eighteen-year-old students often view credit cards as free money, which the lenders count on. The more students charge, the more likely they will incur late fees, maintain balances on high-interest credit cards and pay the minimum payment, keeping them as debt-accumulating customers for years to come.

What to Look for When Choosing a Credit Card in College?

Not all credit card offers are created equal. When picking your first credit card, make sure it is a major credit card, such as a Visa or Mastercard. Even with or without credit history, you should be able to get approved for a credit card with a annual percentage rate (APR) in the mid-teens. This is the rate you are charged for any credit card balances that you carry, or don’t pay off in full the previous month.

Although you can find an offer for 0% APR for the first 6 – 12 months, don’t take this as an invitation to go on a spending spree. Do take advantage of credit cards that offer rewards programs, such as AMEX Blue Cash, which offers 5% cash back on purchases. Over the course of time you can earn some extra money, travel points or other nice gifts.

Your credit card should not have any annual fees, and make sure there is a grace period for your payments. While cramming for finals, you may forget to drop a check in the mail to pay your balance. If your credit card has a 20 day grace period, you’re in the clear.

What to Look out for with Credit Cards

While credit cards can bail you out in an emergency and help you establish a good credit history, watch out for these pitfalls:

You’re a Target: Generally speaking, college students are irresponsible with money, have no experience with paying their bills and managing finances, and will do anything for a free t-shirt.

Never Take a Cash Advance: Cash advances on your credit card are deadly. The interest charges you will incur will be exorbitantly heavy and the interests starts accumulating the moment you receive the cash.

Don’t Overdue It: Maxing out your credit card can actually damage your credit score. Stay below 30% your credit limit in order to establish a good credit history that will build a good credit score. In other words, if you have a $1,000 limit, don’t use more than $300 of your credit.

Only One Card is Needed: Having multiple credit cards is just a disaster waiting to happen. As a college student there should not be a need to have more than one credit card.

Credit cards can be a very helpful tool to help you establish or build credit and assist when you need money in an emergency. It is very easy to fall for the temptation to spend more than can be handled, which is not a good way to start your financial future. Only spend what you can afford and only charge what you intend to repay in full when you bill is due at the end of the month. Now is the best time to get a credit card as The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 will make it much harder for college students to obtain a credit card beginning with the law’s effective date (February 22, 2010)… Click Here To Read More