Medical Moment: The Affordable Care Act

Medical Moment: The Affordable Care Act

Answer by: Kent Gaylord

Answer by:
Kent Gaylord

What Obamacare deadlines do I need to know about?

Answer by Dr. Kent Gaylord.

There are really two important dates for you to keep in mind:

December 15 – Deadline for getting coverage if you want your coverage to begin January 1st.

March 31 – The last day you can get coverage and avoid being liable for that penalty for not having insurance.

What happens after open-enrollment ends on March 31?

The Affordable Care Act is not unlike the insurance plans that most people get through their employers. Every year there is an Open Season and for the most part you can only buy or change plans during that Open Season. If you miss the window you’ll have to wait until the next open season. It’s risky.

However, there is an exception for a life changing event such as moving to another state, getting married or divorced, losing your job-based insurance or having your COBRA coverage from your former job run out. In these scenarios you can buy insurance on the exchange outside the Open Season.

Have Medicare? If so, you likely need take no action! These health exchanges are for people under the age of 65. Medicare Open Season runs until December 7. During this time Medicare patients can join or change their drug plans or other health plans at the Medicare website, not via the state health exchanges.

Shop for insurance here: 

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