The Obama administration will let people with health insurance plans that don't comply with Affordable Care Act standards keep them through October 2017 if their states allow it, officials said Wednesday in announcing a series of final Obamacare rules.
The administration also extended Obamacare's open enrollment for next year by a month—it now will run from Nov. 15, 2014, until Feb. 15, 2015. And it is giving insurers additional financial help to offset the costs of benefits claims from new ACA enrollees, with the goal of keeping Obamacare premiums "affordable" in coming years, officials said.
New rules also simplified the paperwork that larger employers will have to file when the the mandate obliging them to offer affordable health insurance to workers begins next year.
And the rules gave a financial break to the types of self-insured health plans run by many unions, excluding them for two years from the $63-per-capita "reinsurance contribution" assessed for each enrollee.
The final rules, which officials said are being announced now to give individuals, employers and insurers time to plan for 2015, come weeks before the March 31 deadline for open enrollment in Obamacare plans. So far, about 4 million people have bought private insurance plans sold on government-run exchanges and an unknown number have bought ACA-compliant plans outside the exchanges.
Senior administration officials said there are up to 1.5 million people who now have health insurance through individual or small-group plans that aren't compliant with Obamacare minimum standards, and who are now potentially eligible for the extension announced Wednesday.
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