Designed to give more Americans access to lower-cost health insurance Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — is also expanding Medicaid and supporting new medical delivery methods, such as ACA Health Homes.
As from August 2nd, more than 35 million Americans are enrolled in the ACA Health Insurance Marketplace. However, if you want to sign up for full coverage from January 1, 2023, you need to act soon.
Read on to find out if you’re eligible for coverage under the ACA, how to enroll, and when the deadlines are.
For more health tipslearn more about theand find out how you can save money on medical bills .
When is the deadline for submitting a healthcare plan to the Affordable Care Act marketplace?
Open registration started on November 1st and will last until January 15th. However, if you want full coverage from January 1, 2023, the deadline is December 15, 2022.
Depending on your circumstances, you may be entitled to this special registration outside of these dates. How to qualify:
You had a life-changing event in the last 60 days: Events include the loss of health insurance, a change in household income, the birth of a baby, marriage, divorce, moving to a new zip code, or the death of someone on your Marketplace plan.
Note that if you’ve moved to a new zip code, you’ll need to show that you’ve had at least one day of coverage in the last 60 days or that you’ll lose coverage in the next 60 days. Even if you’ve lost your job and decide not to accept COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act) coverage, you can still sign up for a Marketplace plan.
You are applying for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP): If you apply to any of these programs, you can always apply for health insurance through the marketplace.
Other life circumstances you might qualify:
- you come out of jail
- You just became a US citizen
- You begin or end the service in AmeriCorps
- You have achieved membership in a federally recognized tribe or status as a shareholder in the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Corporation
To see if you qualify for a special registration, follow the steps above healthcare.gov/screener/. If you are eligible, your health insurance plan will begin on the first of the month following your enrollment. For example, if you enroll in August, your coverage will begin on September 1st.
What health insurance is available under the Affordable Care Act?
Assuming you qualify for the Affordable Care Act (see below), the state you live in determines which health care providers you can use. Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum options should appear for each plan. Here’s a breakdown of how each plan works.
Bronze: You pay the lowest monthly premium, but you pay more when it comes to paying for care. The Bronze plan deductible is generally much higher than the other options, so you end up paying more out of pocket until your deductible is met.
Silver: This mid-range coverage comes at a modest monthly premium. It will cost you more than the Bronze option, but your medical treatment costs will be less than the Bronze plan.
Gold: This plan comes with a high monthly premium and low cost if you need medical care. A low deductible means you pay far less out-of-pocket medical expenses than with the Bronze and Silver plans.
Platinum: With the most expensive monthly premium you have the lowest costs for medical care. Because the deductible is very low, your plan starts paying for your medical expenses sooner than any of the other options.
Deciding which plan to choose will depend on your lifestyle, how often you need medical care, and what type of medical treatment you need. For example, if you are healthy and anticipate that you will only need to use your insurance for emergencies, you can opt for the Bronze or Silver plan. If you are currently under treatment or expect to need regular medical attention, the Gold and Platinum options could be the best options for you.
Note: Premiums are based on income level. So if you earn less, your premium may be lower.
How do I find out if I’m eligible for an Affordable Care Act plan?
Before you think about which plan to choose, you should first find out if you actually qualify for a plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Go to healthcare.gov/screener and enter your zip code.
Next, answer a few questions to determine if you’re eligible for reduced or full coverage. Once you receive a response, your next step is to complete an application with either the Health Insurance Marketplace or your state’s marketplace to view plans and pricing.
How to sign up for Obamacare
Once you’re ready to sign up – be it between November 1st and January 15th or via a special registration – you’ll need to do so Create an account on HealthCare.gov or through the provider in your state. You then fill out the application to view plans and pricing, and choose which option works best for you.
things you might need during the application:
- for everyone on your application
- Employer and income information for everyone in your household
- Current health insurance numbers (if applicable)
- You can obtain information on health insurance from your employer
- immigration documentation
Again, once you sign up, your plan should start on the first of the month following your signup date, assuming you’ve paid your first month’s premium.
After you sign up, look for your health insurance card in the mail, as well as other information about your chosen health plan.
For more health information, see Find out if your insuranceand how to check your heart health .
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions about a medical condition or health goals.