Business and Economics

Obamacare First Enrollment Deadline is Today, with a Few Changes

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December 23, 2013 — The first consumer deadline for the nation’s new healthcare plan arrives today.

Initial enrollment for health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act has a deadline today for people who want the coverage effective January 1.

After some challenges with the program’s launch, including online access limitations, “Obamacare” is set to start at the first of the year for people who enroll by today’s deadline.  Kim Eldridge is a consultant with Indiana’s Med Wise health plan who says Hoosiers should not be intimidated by the sign-up process.  Enrollment continues through March 31 for the launch of Affordable Care Act health insurance plans.

The Obama Admnistration says that more than 900,000 uninsured Hoosiers will have new health insurance options through Medicaid or private health plans in the marketplace for the program’s launch, which will start with a few new changes.

Some insurers have extended their time period for the first premium payment, which originally also had a deadline for today.  Some insurers will take first premium payments until January 10, and some others are requiring payment on or before December 31.

As open enrollment ends March 31 most people must have health coverage in 2014  or face a penalty of $95 per adult, $47.50 per child, or one percent of the payor’s income, whichever is higher, with a fee increase every year.

The Obama Administration said Friday that people whose health insurance policies were cancelled due to the Affordable Care Act will not be fined.  It also said it is allowing people who lost their insurance coverage because of the Act to enroll in the catastrophic coverage option of the health care plan that had been reserved for people younger than 30.


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