FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Sept. 28, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Obama Care is finally here. That can mean different things to many people. For instance, some individuals will be able to keep their current health plan and not worry about finding a new one. While others can keep their plan until it expires sometime in 2014. Then for some, obtaining health insurance during open enrollment will be the first time receiving health coverage in their life.
For those that purchased a plan prior to March 23, 2010, individuals can keep that plan for as long as they like. You will not be penalized or forced to purchase coverage through the federally facilitated marketplace. An advantage of keeping a grandfathered plan is a lower monthly cost. Older plans will be cheaper than most of the new Obama Care plans. A disadvantage of keeping a grandfathered plan is if an individual qualifies for a subsidy or tax credit. A tax credit will give you financial assistance to help pay for all or a portion of your health premiums through the marketplace. If you qualify for a subsidy you can pay a lot less than what you're currently paying. Also, if your grandfathered plan had any exclusionary riders imposed, you may want to consider applying to the new Obama Care plans.
Individuals can keep their plans until sometime in 2014 (depending on carrier guidelines) if they obtained health insurance after March 23, 2010. When the policy expires in 2014 they must purchase a plan through the market place or be subject to a penalty. However, individuals don't have to wait until their current plan expires to take part in the new plans. An advantage of waiting for the current plan to expire is if you don't qualify for a tax credit, most likely your current plan will be cheaper than purchasing a new plan through the marketplace. Also, if an individual qualifies for a tax credit, the best option would be to join a new plan as soon as they can.
Each individual has a different circumstance and there is no black and white answer as to whether someone should keep their existing plan, purchase a new plan, or sit on the health care reform sidelines. All this can be very confusing. The best thing to do is to contact a licensed broker for assistance. The service of an agent or broker is usually free. You can start by visiting www.HealthInsuranceMedics.com
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Source: Insurance Medics