“I need health insurance, but where do I start?” There are plenty of first time buyers that have health insurance questions and it’s understandable. Many new buyers wonder about the Affordable Care Act a.k.a. Obamacare, where to find health insurance, what health insurance plans are available, and many other issues about healthcare coverage. Here are some health insurance facts, information, and answers to the most common healthcare questions.
Do I Need Health Insurance?
Yes. As of 2017, it is required by law through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that you have health insurance, even if you consider yourself a healthy person. Individual health insurance plans not only help pay for the cost of visiting a doctor or getting a prescription, but also help with physicals and checkups to increase preventative care and possibly catch certain diseases early. Young or old, fit or out-of-shape, healthy or not, you need health coverage.
What If I Don’t Get Health Insurance?
If you do not have ACA insurance, health coverage from your employer, or other valid form of healthcare coverage, you will be subject to tax penalties and fines. These penalties can be upwards of $695 per adult and $347.50 for each child or 2.5% of the tax filer’s annual household income minus the federal tax filing threshold. It is typically not worth paying the penalty and being uninsured.
Where Can I Get Health Insurance?
Your employer may offer you health insurance as a benefit in your job or you can purchase individual health insurance outside of the marketplace. However, if those aren’t valid options, you can purchase insurance through the ACA during Open Enrollment.
What is Open Enrollment?
Open Enrollment is the annual period where you can apply and get health insurance quotes through Covered California and the Affordable Care Act. As of this writing, Open Enrollment starts on November 1st, 2017 and ends on December 15, 2017.
Can I Get Healthcare Coverage If Open Enrollment is Over?
There are special circumstances wherein you can get ACA coverage outside of the enrollment period if you got married, had a baby, or experience some other major life event. Contact an insurance agent or Covered California representative to see if you qualify.
How Can I Find the Right Health Insurance Plan for Me?
Before committing to a health plan, do your research. Figure out what kind of coverage would fit your needs and what will fit within your budget. Take into consideration any recurring prescriptions you may have, if you have a trusted doctor that you want to have in your network, or any specialists you require. Covered California officials and third-party insurance agents such as the ones at Freeway Insurance can also help you choose a health plan that fits your needs out of the offers you are given.
How Can I Save Money on Health Insurance?
There are many different ways you could potentially save extra money on health coverage. You may qualify for federal subsidy or pick a plan that has a higher deductible. You could also look into investing more money into a health savings account in exchange for a lower rate. If your coverage needs are more basic, you won’t need to pay a higher cost for wider coverage. You can explore more options, see if you qualify for certain benefits/discounts, and find other ways to save by contacting a Covered California rep or an insurance agent.
You can sign up for a quality ACA plan and other health insurance offers through Freeway Insurance. Freeway collects insurance quotes from some of the top providers in the nation to present to you the lowest-priced insurance possible. Get a free health insurance quote online or call us today at (800) 777-5620 to get quality protection, avoid the tax penalty, and save money.