Down to the wire for procrastinators and a lot of us fall into that category. So even if you waited until the last-minute to get Obamacare you have until February 15 to sign up for health insurance under Affordable Care Act.
10 million have already signed up or renewed and 67 percent discovered they qualify for a tax credit. The average monthly tax credit adds up to about $268.
You’ll find a lot of people out there willing to help you sign up and choose from one of the 40 plans available. At not-for-profits about 23,000 certified counselors can help and you can find a local person through Healthcare.gov.
You can also contact one of the 74,000 private U.S. insurance agents or brokers who can do the heavy lifting for you.
You can also explore your options and sign up at Healthcare.gov. The site is much easier to use than it was last year and if your state has a healthcare marketplace, it will refer you to that site.
WHEN COVERAGE STARTS
If you enroll by February 15, 2015 and pay your premium, your coverage can start on March 1, 2015.
After that you may have to wait until next year unless you qualify under the special enrollment category that could include marriage, the birth of a child, or a job loss that cuts off your insurance. If you fall into any of those categories you have 60 days after the event to apply at Healthcare.gov.
If you think you may blow all of this off, remember there’s a penalty for failing to get health insurance. You’ll pay either 2 percent of your household income for each uninsured person, or $325 per person. They base the decision on whichever is higher and you’ll have to pay it through your federal income tax return.
So if you are still on the fence about insurance, take a look at this page on Healthcare.gov and check out your options.