INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (October 30, 2015) – The open enrollment period for the federal healthcare marketplace starts this weekend. Americans who don’t get insurance through work must buy their own coverage or face a steep fine.
Starting in 2016, people who are not insured will need to pay $695 or 2.5 percent of their income. The penalty is up more than $300 from 2015. The requirements are part of the Affordable Care Act, passed in 2010.
There is good news for Hoosiers when it comes to the healthcare marketplace. Premiums for many plans in Indiana are dropping by 13% – that’s the biggest decline in the country.
“I think the big variables to look at are going to be what your deductible level is, what your out-of-pocket level is, how your drug card works and then really also what your provider network looks like,” said Joe Gilbert, from Anthem.
The open enrollment period runs from November 1, 2015 to January 31, 2016. If you want your benefits to go into effect by January 1, you must submit your application by December 15.
Gilbert said it is important for people to do their research because healthcare coverage may be more attainable due to federal assistance.
“In Indiana, 87 percent of people are receiving a subsidy to help them pay for their premiums.,” Gilber said. “So the true cost can actually be very, very affordable.”
If you enrolled in a marketplace plan last year and take no action this year, you will simply be renewed or enrolled in a similar plan. Experts say some options have changed so you should log on and review your coverage before the January 31 deadline.