Open enrollment to buy private health insurance coverage for 2018 through www.HealthCare.gov ends on Friday. Note: Medicaid applications are accepted year round.
But don’t wait until the last minute, to avoid any potential issues, like the website crashing with last minute sign-ups.
Crucial news you can use:
Were you impacted by the Equifax data breach? Did you freeze your credit report, to protect your credit? This may actually slow down your ability to sign up for health insurance coverage, because www.HealthCare.gov actually uses credit reports to verify your identity. There is a workaround, but it make take your application longer, so don’t wait to enroll.
Do you live in one of these states?
- California, D.C., Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island – November 1 to January 31
- Colorado – November 1 to January 12
- Connecticut – November 1 to December 22
- Maryland – November 1 to December 22
- Minnesota – November 1 to January 14
- Washington – November 1 to January 1
You have more time to sign up for coverage, but if you want your coverage to start on January 1, 2018, then you need to sign up by December 15.
Live in an area affected by the recent hurricanes?
Then you might have more time, too. Read more here.
You may qualify for financial assistance.
For 2018, 8 in 10 people have Marketplace health insurance options for $75 or less, a month. This is mostly due to the premium tax credits available to people based on their income level.
Even though the Administration has said that they will no longer pay the insurance companies back for providing cost-sharing subsidies (aka cost-sharing reductions), the insurance companies still have to provide those discounts to consumers.
Is your 2017 plan not available for 2018?
If the health insurance plan that you have now is no longer being offered in 2018, you need to go to the Marketplace to see what your new options are and pick the best plan for you. If you don’t, you will likely be automatically enrolled in a new plan that might be more expensive or not cover your providers. It is crucial you take the time to shop around to make sure you get the coverage you need.
Find health insurance confusing?
Then watch our short video which breaks down the key things you need to know.
You can also watch our webinar on choosing a health insurance policy.