Check Up on the Affordable Care Act
Nearly two million uninsured people are in the State of Georgia. October 1st kicks off the Open Enrollment period. Get the facts on how it will impact your family.
The goal of the Affordable Care Act is to expand and improve access to healthcare in four main areas:
- Requires U.S. citizens and legal residents to purchase a “qualifying” health plan.
- Individuals without coverage will have to pay a tax penalty.
- Offers states the opportunity to expand the eligibility for Medicaid requirements to adults without children if their income is less than $15,282 a year.
- Results in health care coverage for an additional estimated 640,000 uninsured Georgians who are exempted from the Individual Mandate for health insurance coverage.
Health Insurance Marketplace
- Go to www.Healthcare.gov is a United States government web based portal that
will help you make comparisons between available health insurance plans to select the one that is best for you and your budget.
- To speak with someone directly call Healthcare.gov at 1-800-318-2596 (TTY: 1-855-889-4325) 24 hours a day/7 days a week to speak with someone directly.
- The Family and Individual Marketplace will help with enrollment in private health insurance, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
Employer Requirements – As of January 2015,
- Effective January 2015 – Employers with 50 or more full-time employees will be required to offer qualified health insurance coverage.
- Employers with 50 or more full-time employees, that offer coverage that does not meet the minimum federal requirements, will have to pay the lesser of $3,000 for each employee receiving a premium credit or $2,000 for each full time employee.
- Employers with less than 200 employees can purchase affordable insurance from the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP was developed to aide businesses in purchasing health insurance for their employees and receive tax-credits to assist with the cost of insurance).
- While not required for businesses with less than 50 employees, the mandate states that if an employer pays at least 50 percent of their full-time employees’ premium costs, you will receive a tax credit for the remaining 50 percent (35 percent for tax-exempt employees).
Important Dates for You to Remember
- October 1st – Open enrollment for the uninsured begins.
- March 31, 2014 – Open enrollment closes.
- After March 31, 2014 when open enrollment closes, you can only get insurance for 2014
through a special open enrollment period for a qualifying life event a job loss, birth, or divorce. If you do not secure coverage by March 31, 2014, you will have a to pay a tax penalty
Effective Dates of Healthcare Coverage
- If you get health insurance October 1 through December 15, 2013, your coverage will start on January 1, 2014.
- December 16, 2013 to March 31, 2014 – If you enroll during this period and pay your monthly premium between the 1st through the 15th, your coverage starts the first day of the next month (Example: Pay premium on February 10, coverage begins March 1).
- If you enroll between the 16th and the end of the month, your coverage will begin the first day of the second month after you pay your premium (Example: Pay for coverage on February 16. It is effective April 1).
For additional information call the Urban League of Greater Atlanta at 404-659-1150.