Without quality health insurance in place, the cost of being treated for the most basic services can be a bank account draining process. For this reason, each person should ensure that they always have current coverage. It became a legal responsibility in 2014, with the passage of "The Affordable Care Act," although millions of Americans remain uninsured.
Although the penalty was not severe the first year (just $95), it has gradually increased to 2.5% of household income for noncompliance. A knowledgeable broker can keep you compliant, and also help compare all Exchange plans that are offered on the State and Federal Marketplace.
While we assume we will always be healthy, tomorrow is always an uncertainty, and a multitude of illnesses, sickness or an accident, could occur at any moment in time. Your coverage will give you preventive benefits and security, but first you must choose the policy that will meet your needs. And yes, that can be very challenging, considering how many reputable carriers offer coverage in most states. And of course, the Open Enrollment deadline must not be missed, which typically ends on January 31st.
Further complicating the decision-making process is that not all companies participate in State Marketplaces. For example, although Blue Cross (Blue Shield) participates in every State Exchange, heavyweight carriers Aetna, Humana, UnitedHealthcare and others have selected the states that they wish to offer plans. And since the number of participating carriers has decreased in most states, in many situations, you may not be able to choose your preferred company, if you want a federal subsidy. And in some counties, there are no available carriers.
An Insurance Agent Can Help
Whether you’ve been covered under different plans in the past, or are new to the process, one thing always remains the same- choosing the right policy can be tricky. There are an enormous amount of essential terms for you to understand in order to select a policy that will live up to your expectations while remaining within your budget. Learning how to get a healthcare quote online is an easy process. There are many challenges and obstacles, and our job is to simplify the process.
Fortunately, that’s where an agent can help. They are experts in researching and finding coverage, and can help you choose a personalized policy that meets or exceeds your budget and benefit expectations. Federal tax subsidies can help reduce premiums if you are eligible. Typically, if your income falls under 400% of the Federal Poverty Level, you will receive financial assistance. If under 100% (sometimes higher in Medicaid Expansion states), you may be eligible for Medicaid. If you're in between (and millions of persons are), Comparing Bronze, Silver and Gold plans (and sometimes Platinum and Catastrophic) is needed before applying for coverage.
Your representative can give you personalized attention that you can’t get anywhere else. With their in-depth knowledge of the various carriers and policies, they can quickly and easily assist you in obtaining a policy and also servicing the contract in future years. That’s a lot better than having to call a 1-800 number and speaking to a stranger every time you need help. Especially, if you are re-routed outside the US. Although the Healthcare.gov agents and customer service representatives are generally fairly helpful, their level of experience is generally inferior when compared to licensed agents.
Your representative also can explain all of the details that may be hard to understand, as well as address any and all concerns that you may have. While online links and resources may offer a bit of assistance, it doesn’t get any better than speaking to an expert that you already know and trust. When the State Exchanges began operating in 2014, suddenly, you needed to consult a broker to determine the best plan to purchase and what tax breaks you would qualify for. Open Enrollment typically begins in November each year.
For persons that prefer working online with their broker, modern quote engines will allow you to compare, shop and even purchase your policy without seeing anyone in person. But a quote engine still can not interpret which of the many options best fits your personal budget. That's why most experienced agents utilize a combination of experience and online applications. The Obamacare federal subsidy must also be correctly calculated, or a reduction of a tax refund may result the following year.
With the latest information and unbiased advice working for you, viewing the best offers while getting a better policy is something you can always count on. Shopping and comparing multiple plans is necessary if you are going to get the lowest rates. Each carrier offers various policies in different areas, so your provider network will also have to be checked to verify your physicians are participating.
Don’t Try To Do Too Much Alone
An experienced broker can explain the variations in policies, what specific terms mean, and guide you through a sometimes-complicated enrollment process.. You will always get coverage that is tailored for your needs when you have the experts working on your side. Yes, a little like Nationwide!
As a licensed professional who has made it his job to provide you, his or her customer, with the best policy at the lowest possible rates, you're also in "good hands." (Yes...just like Allstate!) As premiums and coverage change over the years, he/she can take the time to update your existing policies and make any appropriate recommendations. Unbiased advice is always a great tool to have. But it is also important to stay abreast of all the changes (especially in the healthcare field) that occur.
Why would you not want to receive free advice from an experienced broker when they are there ready to serve you? With benefits as previously mentioned, you can see why it is always advisable to consult with someone who will have your best interests in mind at all times. Typically, you can choose to meet face-to-face or simply communicate via email and/or phone.
There is no cost to use the services of a licensed agent, and they are accessible for extended hours. You can contact them any time that you would like to have all of your questions answered, and your concerns addressed. If you can find a person that is experienced and is located near you, that’s a great start! And of course, you can contact us directly for the same expert help.
Our website helps you find apply for the right plans. You can choose whether you apply direct or with the help of a broker. Regardless of which option you select, there are never any fees or obligation. Our guidance and assistance is always free, including helping with the enrollment process on State Health Exchanges. We can also help you to determine your eligibility for a federal subsidy.