Affordable Care Act
To see information for 2018, click here.
Obamacare’s open enrollment period for 2016 is now closed. The open enrollment period for 2017 health insurance plans is scheduled to begin on November 1, 2016 and ends January 31, 2017.
The Obamacare open enrollment period isn’t scheduled to begin until November 1, 2016, but getting a head start on your paperwork and reviewing your options can’t hurt!
You may be thinking, “I’m actually really satisfied with my health insurance plan, so why should I review it?”
Here are 3 reasons why:
The Obamacare open enrollment period is the one time of year that EVERYONE should reconsider their health coverage, even if you are content with your current plan.
Taking 5 minutes to review your options during open enrollment can potentially save you hundreds – or even thousands – of dollars per year!
And if you take prescription drugs, or if you’re planning to have a baby or major surgery this year, you need to think carefully about your out-of-pocket medical costs as well as your monthly premiums.
In this article, we’ll answer the following questions for you about the 2017 open enrollment season:
Simply stated, open enrollment is the one time each year when anyone can apply for a new health plan. If you buy your own health insurance, it’s critical that you pay attention to open enrollment because health insurance prices can change every year.
The Obamacare open enrollment period for 2017 plans is scheduled to begin on November 1, 2016 and is scheduled to end on January 31, 2017.
During open enrollment you cannot be turned down for major medical coverage for not having certain qualifying life events.
Outside of open enrollment, you can generally only enroll in a major medical plan when you experience a qualifying life event (such as a marriage, divorce, new baby, adoption, permanent move, loss of other coverage, etc.).
If you miss open enrollment you could potentially face tax penalties on your federal tax return for 2017.
You should shop for new coverage during open enrollment because it could save you money and help you avoid rate increases or negative changes to your benefits and coverage.
The fact is, even if you have health insurance, your current plan may not be the best choice for next year. Here are a few of the ways your health insurance plan may change in 2017:
The Affordable Care Act made government subsidies available to certain individuals and families earning up to 400% of the federal poverty level per year. These subsidies may be applied to your monthly health insurance premiums, making coverage more affordable.
You should take special care during open enrollment if you received subsidies in 2016, or if you had changes in your income that may make you eligible for subsidies in 2017. Here’s why:
There are various ways you can enroll in a 2017 health insurance during open enrollment.
Government exchanges: You’ve probably heard about the government-run health insurance exchange in your state. Through the government exchange website you can apply for government subsidies and enroll in a limited selection of subsidy-eligible health insurance plans.
Private marketplaces: Licensed private health insurance marketplaces like eHealth may be a better option for some. In many states, you can use private marketplaces like eHealth to find the same plans offered through your government exchange. But you’ll also get access to additional Obamacare plans that aren’t available through government websites. Plus, you can get personal help from licensed agents and access to terrific online tools that make it easier to compare plans and shop smart.
In addition to the options above, you may also be able to enroll through a brick-and-mortar health insurance agent in your town, or directly through an insurance company’s website.
Just remember: the BEST way to find the best plan for your personal needs and budget is to shop from a source that allows you to compare as many plans as possible from as many insurance companies as possible. You can’t really comparison shop if you can’t compare all your options!
When you shop for coverage at eHealth.com during the 2017 open enrollment period, you’ll get:
Why shop anywhere else?