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- Open Enrollment is the time when everyone has a right to sign up for coverage
- Enrollment is simple and straightforward by any of five methods
- Applicants can complete Enrollment online
- Official identification such as SSN or naturalization papers
- Income information for individuals
- Income information for household
- Any existing insurance information
Open Enrollment is a critical time; it limits the period for sign-up and changing health insurance for the entire calendar year. Open Enrollment offers an opportunity to rate and compare various plans. Comparison shopping is a great way to find the best possible health insurance plan on or outside of the Obamacare marketplace. Start comparing health insurance rates now by using our FREE tool above!
Five Methods for Sign-up
Sign-up is easy and convenient. One can do it online in a single session. The five main ways to sign up during the Open Enrollment are listed below. Open Enrollment includes referrals to Medicaid and renewals of existing coverage.
- Mail filled out hard copy
- Direct with Insurance company provider or agents
- Sign up in person at Obamacare enrollment locations
- Sign-up online at the federal exchange or Online with the state exchange
- Sign-up by telephone with live assistance
Limits on Open Enrollment
Open Enrollment has a definite start and end. For 2016, the Open Enrollment runs from November 1, 2015, through January 31, 2016. After Open Enrollment, an applicant cannot sign up unless they find an extension or qualify for an exception.
After Open Enrollment, one can no longer sign up for health insurance. However, those who can show a Life Event can qualify for a special enrollment period. The below-listed items are among the accepted Life Events.
- Birth of a child or adoption
- Moving to a different state
- Loss of insurance as a dependent
- Loss of insurance due to job loss
Obamacare requires identification of the individuals by some unique identifier like a social security number. This is not out of the ordinary for most Americans who routinely get an SSN somewhere early in life. For those who somehow do not have a basic item like an SSN, there must be additional steps to prove one’s identity. The following are the valid status classifications for participation in Obamacare, Medicaid or CHIPs.
- US Citizens
- US Nationals
- Immigrants lawfully present in the United States
Guessing at income or trying to downsize it for more benefits can backfire. Accuracy is clearly the best policy for Obamacare sign-up. If income is too low and one lives in a state that rejected Medicaid expansion, one could wind up with no benefits at all. In states that refused to carry out the Affordable Care Act, residents must use the federal website. Income information can place the applicant in the favorable income zones beneath 400 percent of the federal poverty guideline and in line for premium subsidies, Health Savings Accounts, and payment assistance.
The sign-up process requires Information about all members of the household. This includes anyone that will be listed on the individual or family tax return.
Documents Make Sign Up Easier
The documents needed for Obamacare sign-up help determine eligibility for health insurance coverage and financial assistance. The Obamacare marketplace offers many plans for each state and locality. Comparison shopping is the most effective method for getting the best match of plan features and individual and family needs. With a focus on needs and preferences, one can weigh the strengths and weaknesses of the plans available in the area of residence. Insurers make plans for states or parts of states and base them on available resources and expected demand for services. Comparison shopping puts the focus where it should be; it focuses on the subscriber’s situation and medical care preferences. Start comparing health insurance providers now by entering your zip code in our FREE tool below!