Free Obamacare Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about free Obamacare. Have a question that we haven’t answered? Call us at 877-561-3360!
As of right now, the 2022 Open Enrollment Period (OEP) will begin on November 1, 2021 and end on December 15, 2021. You may already qualify if you have had a qualifying life event, or recently qualified for Medicaid or Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
In short, the “metal” rankings break down how much of the cost that you (the insured) pay. Currently, the breakdown is: bronze – 40%, silver – 30%, gold – 20%, and platinum – 10%. We know that all of the different kinds of plans can be confusing which is why you should call us to help you determine which insurance is best for you.
One of the large impacts in this legislation is health insurance and the Marketplace. The American Rescue Plan has made a lot of changes in the affordability of insurance, who can qualify for help and much, much more.
It MAY VERY WELL GO DOWN! Due to these changes with the American Rescue Plan, more people will qualify for coverage and for millions of covered the rates may go down. All Americans that qualify and have income under 150% of the Federal poverty level will qualify for a FREE SILVER PLAN. There are many rules and our agents are here to explain to you all the details. Call us and we can see if you qualify.
Starting 7/1 we will be able to get anyone that meets enrollment qualifications and was unemployed at any point for 1 week or more in 2021, your family will qualify for free coverage under the new American Rescue Plan updates.
To be eligible for Obamacare subsidies you must be currently living in the US, are either a citizen or legal resident, are not currently incarcerated, and you must meet some income requirements. You will have to file taxes also. We would love to help you check your ability to get Obamacare and Insurance under the Affordable Care Act. Please call us at 877-561-3360.
This is the time where you enroll in medical, vision, and dental insurance coverages for the year. This period of time is the only time you can begin coverage or adjust your coverage for the coming year. There are some exceptions based on specific, qualifying life events.
ACA is an acronym that stands for the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as “Obamacare.” The Affordable Care Act was a sweeping healthcare reform law passed in 2010 that made affordable healthcare attainable to all citizens of the United States.
ACA Open Enrollment is usually between October and December. Special consideration had been made to open a second period earlier than the usual period due to COVID-19. Under the American Rescue Plan they allowed a special open enrollment period from 04-01-2021 through 08-15-2021. Unfortunately, open enrollment is now closed. You may still qualify if you have a qualifying life event or qualify for Medicaid or CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program).
There are different types of qualifying life events that will allow you to enroll in Obamacare outside of the enrollment period:
• You recently lost insurance coverage that met government requirements (due to job or coverage loss)
• Your family has changed (childbirth, married, divorced, adoption, death)
• You permanently moved to a new area where your coverage is no longer effective
• You became a United states Citizen or National
• Government errors that cause you to enroll, change, or lose coverage
• Your eligibility for the subsidy has changed.
The purpose of the ACA (or Obamacare) was to ensure that individuals would have access to affordable health care. There are numerous plans to choose from and with the subsidies provided by Obamacare, the majority of people can find an affordable healthcare plan that meets their needs. If you need assistance navigating the healthcare marketplace, please call us at 877-561-3360 and let us help you find the coverage you need.
Unless it is currently an open enrollment period or you meet one of the “Qualifying Life Events” qualifications, pregnancy alone does not make you eligible to enroll in Obamacare.
Under the American Rescue Plan your insurance will always be accessible at 8.5% of your family income or less. If your income is lower then the cost is lower. Please call us at 877-561-3360 so we can help estimate the cost.
Under the American rescue plan your insurance will be less than 8.5% of your income. Now more people qualify for help.
Here is an example:
A Middle Age Family of 4 can make up to (see below) and still qualify for help
• Hills County 202K
• Miami 207K
• Orange 215K
You may need to have one or more of the following documents or numbers when you apply for and enroll in Marketplace coverage. The documents you need depend on your immigration status:
• Permanent Resident Card, “Green Card” (I-551)
• Reentry Permit (I-327)
• Refugee Travel Document (I-571)
• Employment Authorization Document (I-766)
• Machine Readable Immigrant Visa (with temporary I-551 language)
• Temporary I-551 Stamp (on passport or I-94/I-94A)
• Arrival/Departure Record (I-94/I-94A)
• Arrival/Departure Record in foreign passport (I-94)
• Foreign Passport
• Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status (I-20)
• Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor Status (DS-2019)
• Notice of Action (I-797)
• Document indicating membership in a federally recognized Indian tribe or American Indian born in Canada
• Certification from U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR)
• Document indicating withholding of removal
• Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) eligibility letter (if under 18)
• Resident of American Samoa card
• Alien number (also called alien registration number or USCIS number) or I-94 number
We would love to review your situation and see if you qualify for Obamacare, the best solution is to call us at 877-561-3360.
You must file a federal tax return and, if married, file a joint tax return in order to qualify for help paying for Obamacare.
Due to more people being eligible, even small business owners are thinking about Individual plans. With the Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA) rules in place, this is definitely something to consider. Please call us at 877-561-3360 so we can discuss possible options.
HRAs, or Health Reimbursement Arrangements, are a monthly allowance of tax-free money given by employers to their employees to purchase whatever health care services they need. This money must be used for qualified medical expenses, to include Obamacare. Typically HRA’s have a fixed dollar amount for the year, are controlled and owned by the employer, and whatever funds are left at the end of the year can be rolled over to the next. Please call us at 877-561-3360 to find out if this is a possible solution for your small business.
There are several life events that will allow you to qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. Some examples include marriage, moving, having a baby, and more. More people than ever before qualify for help paying for health coverage, even those who weren’t eligible in the past!
When we help you apply for Marketplace coverage, you’ll find out if you qualify for a premium tax credit that lowers your monthly premium.
The amount of your premium tax credit depends on the estimated household income for 2021 that you put on your Marketplace application.
Find out if your estimated 2021 income is in the range to qualify for a premium tax credit toward your Obamacare.
There are some situations where you may qualify. Please call us at 877-561-3360 and let us discuss the coverage your employer is offering and whether or not you qualify for free Obamacare.
Later this year, you may be able to get another increase in premium tax credits. HealthCare.gov will have more information available in the summer once these additional savings are available to those who got unemployment compensation during 2021. At that time, you can go back to HealthCare.gov to update your Obamacare application and current plan with more tax credits to lower your premiums for the rest of the year.
Yes, you can purchase Marketplace coverage and qualify for subsidies based on your income. Premiums for Marketplace plans can vary by age.
We would recommend you maintain your Medicare coverage. Companies selling plans from the Marketplace are not allowed to sell them to you if they know you have Medicare. Remember that just like the Marketplace, Medicare has general enrollment periods as well. This period begins January 1st and ends on March 31st and coverages take effect in July of the same year. If you happen to miss your initial enrollment, you may even get penalized:
• If for whatever reason you sign up for Part B after you are initially eligible (or drop it and re-sign up at a later date), you may see an increase in your monthly premium of 10% (multiplied by however many years you could have had the coverage but did not).
• There is also the possibility of a late enrollment penalty if you did not have Part D coverage. This penalty is about 1% of the national average premium amount and is multiplied by every month you didn’t have coverage equal to the standard Part D.
As you can see, it is in your best interest to maintain your Medicare benefit. If you still are not certain, please call us at 877-561-3360.
No, plan cancellation is not automatic and you must contact your Marketplace policy issuer to have your plan canceled when your Medicare coverage is set to begin.
As long as you aren’t an undocumented immigrant you should be able to buy health insurance coverage in the Marketplace because you aren’t entitled to zero-premium Medicare. You will also be able to get premium tax credits to help keep your Marketplace coverage more affordable ( your income must be between 100%-400% of the federal poverty level, which is between $12,760 and $51,040 in 2021 for an individual).
One thing to consider is that you can keep working (if you are physically able) to earn enough work history to meet the qualifications for zero-premium Medicare in the future. So, signing up for both Part A and Part B coverage at 65 will require a premium for both parts, BUT once you become eligible, you are only going to be left with the Part B premium to pay.
For the most part if you have, or can get, any of the below listed coverages then you would not be eligible for premium tax credits.
• Employer-sponsored coverage, unless you can’t afford it because you have to contribute more than 9.83% of your household income or it doesn’t meet the minimum required coverages. There are some special considerations made in regard to family coverages as well. Please call us at 877-561-3360 for more assistance.
• Medicare, Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Veterans insurance, TRICARE, etc.
• Peace Corps volunteers insurance
But even with some coverages, you may still be able to get premium tax credits, given certain requirements are met:
• Individual health insurance
• Student Insurance
• Covered by your parent’s group health plan (you must be under 26 and not claimed as a dependent).
• Former employer’s retiree health insurance
• Any change to the amount of income you expect for the year. See how to estimate your income and what you need to include by going to https://www.healthcare.gov/income-and-household-information/income/
• If anyone in the household has been offered health coverage at work, regardless of enrollment.
• If anyone in the household starts receiving Medicaid, Medicare, Children’s Health Insurance (CHIP), etc.
• If anyone in the household suddenly loses coverage due to loss of job or Medicaid.
• Any changes in the household (birth, adoption, death, marriage, divorce, pregnancy, child reaching the age of 26).
• Moving to a different coverage area.
• If there are any corrections to your vital statistics (name, date of birth, or social security number)
• If your status changes (disability, tax filing, citizenship/immigration, American Indian/Alaska Native/Tribal Member, Incarceration/release)
To report changes, you only need to update your application. There are several ways you can update your application: online, by phone, or in person. The only way you are not able to update your application is by mail.
Yes you can. You can collect the credit as a refundable tax credit once you file and reconcile your 2021 federal tax return.
Yes! You can claim it when you file your federal taxes. The premium subsidies are going to be available for 2021 and 2022.
You have a couple of options in 2021:
1. Marketplace – You can qualify for enhanced subsidies for plans on the Marketplace and eligibility is based on your annual income. BUT, for 2021 only, even if you received unemployment benefits for only a single week your income above 133% of the federal poverty level will be ignored. With that and your tax credit you could qualify for the zero-premium, benchmark silver plan. You would also probably qualify for reduced cost sharing which brings your plan deductible down to less than $200 on average.
2. COBRA – You may be qualified for up to 6 months of FULL COBRA premium subsidies if you lost group plan coverage after losing your job due to the American Rescue Plan’s. This particular assistance is only temporary and only for 2021.
COBRA, or Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, is insurance coverage offered that helps certain individuals who have recently become unemployed and lost their medical coverage.
It is possible you could afford a plan with a lower deductible using the increased premium tax credits. In HealthCare.gov states, you are able to change plans during the special COVID enrollment period, which runs through August 15th. Even state-based marketplaces may let you switch to a more affordable plan that includes lower deductibles.
We can assist you in locating coverages through most major insurance groups such as Florida Blue and more!
Once you have signed up for Obamacare, it typically takes effect the following month.
The ACA(Obamacare) is what helped make it possible for everyone to have access to affordable healthcare. When we help you apply for Marketplace coverage, you’ll find out if you qualify for a premium tax credit that will help lower your monthly premium as well. Please call us at 877-561-3360 for more assistance.
If you received at least 1 week of unemployment compensation in 2021, then you qualify for a free Silver plan due to the American Rescue Plan.