As we near the end of October, I am receiving more and more questions about Health Care for 2014. “Is my plan really going away?” “How much subsidy will I get?” “If my child is on my tax return, what income do I have to declare?” “What are these gold, silver, bronze things all about?” “Why do the new plans for me cost so much more?” “When can I actually apply for a plan?”
Here is a summary of what we know now:
“Will I qualify for a subsidy?” The Advance Tax Credit, commonly known as the “subsidy,” is available to those under certain income levels. To get an estimate of subsidies, try this estimator from the Kaiser Family Foundation. Note that these are not final numbers, but they give an indication of the amount of Tax Credit for which you may be eligible.
“I won’t qualify for a subsidy. Can I apply now for a 2014 plan?” YES. You can obtain a 2014 quote and apply now for coverage starting January 1, 2014. Click here to look at 2014 options from Blue Cross / Blue Shield of Michigan. We also have 2014 plans available
“It looks like I WILL qualify for a subsidy. Can I apply now for a 2014 plan?” Yes, and maybe. Michigan partnered with the Federal Government to allow Michiganders to apply for coverage through www.healthcare.gov. However, that web site has not been working to the extent where it is easy (possible?) to apply for coverage online. (See recent New York Times coverage for details.) You can go there and view coverage options for Michigan. But the rates you see will be estimates based on wide age ranges. You can call the phone number at the site and start the application process, but that may involve waiting for materials to arrive by mail to you to complete the process. Hopefully the web site issues are resolved in time for individuals to apply by December 14 for a January 1, 2014 effective date. Contact me at the Curtis Insurance Agency and we can discuss your situation in more detail.
Answers to more of the questions above to come. For more information about Michigan health care plans for individuals, contact Greg Clay at 248.628.3604.