03 2 / 2014
04 12 / 2013
I was asked a really good question today: If I want to change to a Marketplace insurance plan, I can cancel my current plan, right?
While it is true that if you currently have an individual plan you can explore your options on the Marketplace and enroll in a new plan. However, you should check with your current insurance company before cancelling your policy. You may have to wait until the end of your policy year before you can cancel.
To find out more information about changing individual insurance plans, visit https://www.healthcare.gov/what-if-i-want-to-change-individual-insurance-plans/
26 11 / 2013
Last week the Obama Administration announced that the deadline to enroll in the Marketplace and have coverage begin on January 1, 2014 would be extended until December 23, 2013. This extension also gives consumers until December 31, 2013 to begin paying for premiums.
Enroll by December 23, 2013 and pay your first premium by December 31, 2013 - Coverage can start January 1, 2014.
30 10 / 2013
Anonymous said: Is there a way for me to see what plans I might qualify for and their cost without applying on the Marketplace?
Yes! Thank you for asking. Many people are wondering how much insurance may cost them under the new healthcare law and there is now a tool available in the Health Insurance Marketplace, healthcare.gov, to help you get an estimate. Click here to get plan information in your area.
You can use the Kaiser Family Foundation calculator tool that was previously posted (or click here) with the plans and prices tool together to be able to see the plans and full premium prices available to you and find out if you may qualify for lower monthly premiums.
29 10 / 2013
Anonymous said: I heard that if you don't get health insurance under Obamacare you will have to pay a fine. Is that true?
Great question and thanks for asking!
The short answer to your question is yes. However, there is more to it than that, so bear with me.
Begining in 2014 if you don’t have health insurance you will have to pay a fee on your federal tax return. But in some cases, you may be able to get an exemption, which means you would not have to pay the fee. We’ll talk about that more, but first, let’s talk about the fee.
How much is the fee? In 2014 the yearly fee will be $95 per person or 1% your income for the year, whichever is higher. The fee for an uninsured child under 18 is $47.50. Regardless of the number of people in the household, the most a family would have to pay is $285 and the payment is made when you file your 2014 taxes. The fee will increase every year.
Who can get an exemption? You may not have to pay a fee if:
- You’re uninsured for less than 3 months of the year.
- The lowest-priced coverage available to you would cost more than 8% oyour household income.
- You don’t have to file a tax return because your income is too low.
- You’re a member of a federally recognized American Indian tribe or eligible for services through an Indian Health Services provider.
- You’re a member of a recognized health care sharing ministry.
- You’re a member of a recgnized religious sect with religious objections to insurance, including Social Security and Medicare.
- You’re incarcerated, and not awaiting the disposition of charges against you.
- You’re not lawfully present in the U.S.
You may also qualify for a “hardship exemption.” You may qualify if:
You were homeless.
You were evicted in the past 6 months or were facing eviction or foreclosure.
You received a shut-off notice from a utility company.
You recently experienced domestic violence.
You recently experienced the death of a close family member.
You experienced a fire, flood, or other natural or human caused disaster that caused substantial damage to your property.
You filed for bankruptcy in the last 6 months.
You had medical expenses you couldn’t pay in the last 24 months.
You experienced unexpected increases in necessary expenses due to caring for an ill, disabled, or agining family member.
You expect to claim a child as a tax dependent who’s been denied coverage in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and another person is required by court order to give medical support to the child. In this case, you don’t have to pay the penalty for the child.
As a result of an eligibility appeals decision, you’re eligible for enrollment in a qualified health plan (QHP) through the Marketplace, or lower costs on your monthly premiums, or cost-sharing reductions, for a time period when you weren’t enrolled in a QHP through the Marketplace.
You were found not to be eligible for Medicaid because your state didn’t expand its Medicaid program.
How do I apply for an exemption? How and if you need to apply depends on which exemption fits your situation.
For an exemption based on coverage being unaffordable, membership in a health care sharing ministry, federally-recognized tribe, or incarceration there are two options:
- Claim these exemptions when you fill out your 2014 federal tax return (due April 15, 2015)
- Fill out an exemption application in the Health Insurance Marketplace at healthcare.gov
For an exemption based on membership in a recognized religious sect whose members object to insurance, eligibility for services through an Indian healthcare provider, or one of the “hardship” exemptions you should fill out an exemption application in the Health Insurance Marketplace at healthcare.gov
For an exemption if your income will be low enough that you won’t be required to file taxes you don’t need to apply for an exemption. This is true even if you file a federal tax return to get a refund of money withheld from your paycheck.
For an exeption if you have a gap in coverage of less than 3 months, or if you’re not lawfully present in the U.S. you don’t need to apply for an exemption. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will handle this when you file your taxes.
That’s a lot of information. If you have anymore questions please do not hesitate to ask. You can also get more information by visiting healthcare.gov, calling the Health Insurance Marketplace call center at 1-800-318-2596 or using the live chat on healthcare.gov.
24 10 / 2013
24 10 / 2013
The amount you will pay for an insurance premium depends on a few factors.
- Individual vs. Family enrollment.
- Age (Note: older adults will pay no more than 3 times what young adults pay)
- Geographic area
- Tobacco use; and
- Level of plan you choose (Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum)
24 10 / 2013
To apply for health insurance on the Marketplace you must:
- Live in the United States; and
- Be a U.S. Citizen or national; or
- Be a non-citizen who is lawfully present in the U.S. for the entire period for which the enrollment is sought; and
- Not be incarcerated (Note: individuals who are incarcerated pending the disposition of a charge may enroll in the Marketplace)
23 10 / 2013