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Author Topic: Obamacare explained for musicians  (Read 14115 times)
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robcat2075

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« on: Oct 17, 2013, 08:59AM »

Here is a low-drama explanation of what to expect and what to do.

The Uninsured Musician’s Guide to The Affordable Care Act

I put this in "Business" because this is ultimately a financial issue and should be a substantial boon to every free-lance working artist/musician/actor/performer/human in the US and all the rest who have "day jobs" that don't provide insurance.

The enrollment deadline is December 15.
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Robert Holmén

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robcat2075

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« Reply #1 on: Oct 17, 2013, 10:40AM »

The only remaining shoe to drop, I think, is when the states that have declined to expand Medicaid will turn around and get on board.

If you are in a state that will expand Medicaid be sure to look into the eligibility reqs for that as that will be much cheaper than any of the private policies offered in the new "exchanges". Many lower-income working people will qualify for Medicaid coverage.
« Last Edit: Oct 17, 2013, 03:39PM by robcat2075 » Logged

Robert Holmén

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SilverBone
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« Reply #2 on: Oct 17, 2013, 03:52PM »

It's a pretty good overview IMO for non-musicians as well.
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« Reply #3 on: Oct 17, 2013, 11:51PM »

Quote from: robcat2075
If you are in a state that will expand Medicaid be sure to look into the eligibility reqs for that

One of the more bizarre aspects of how things have worked out is that you can be too poor to qualify for subsidies.  In that case, Medicaid (provided it's available in your state) or full price are the only choices.  At least for now.

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The enrollment deadline is December 15.

March 31 for this enrollment period.  I believe open enrollment will run October-December starting next year.
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robcat2075

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« Reply #4 on: Oct 18, 2013, 07:43AM »



March 31 for this enrollment period. 

You're right.  The Dec 15 date is the deadline for people who want their coverage to start ASAP which is January 1.
« Last Edit: Oct 18, 2013, 01:58PM by robcat2075 » Logged

Robert Holmén

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robcat2075

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« Reply #5 on: Oct 18, 2013, 02:36PM »

Here is a calculator from the Kaiser Family Foundation that will quickly estimate your premiums and possible subsidies to offset that cost based on your income, location, family size, etc...

http://kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator/


I haven't tried going through the entire process at www.healthcare.gov yet but it appears to be up and running.

EDIT: I guess the healthcare.gov problem is that people are having trouble making the actual personal account they need. Well, try later.


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Robert Holmén

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Matt K

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« Reply #6 on: Oct 18, 2013, 04:10PM »

Here is a calculator from the Kaiser Family Foundation that will quickly estimate your premiums and possible subsidies to offset that cost based on your income, location, family size, etc...

http://kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator/


I haven't tried going through the entire process at www.healthcare.gov yet but it appears to be up and running.

EDIT: I guess the healthcare.gov problem is that people are having trouble making the actual personal account they need. Well, try later.

That and you can't just see the plans without giving away a ton of personal information, even if you just want to see an unsubsidized price.
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SilverSonic

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« Reply #7 on: Oct 19, 2013, 07:19AM »

Here is a calculator from the Kaiser Family Foundation that will quickly estimate your premiums and possible subsidies to offset that cost based on your income, location, family size, etc...

http://kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator/


I haven't tried going through the entire process at www.healthcare.gov yet but it appears to be up and running.

EDIT: I guess the healthcare.gov problem is that people are having trouble making the actual personal account they need. Well, try later.




I have two friends that got frustrated with the website and called in- they got much better service via phone.
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robcat2075

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« Reply #8 on: Oct 19, 2013, 07:24AM »

I have two friends that got frustrated with the website and called in- they got much better service via phone.
Is there a national number for that or is it a state-by-state thing?
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Robert Holmén

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« Reply #9 on: Oct 19, 2013, 09:11AM »

One of the better balanced and informative "non-political" articles I have read.  Thanks.  Now part of my Facebook page!



Cheers

Jim
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robcat2075

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« Reply #10 on: Mar 31, 2014, 11:23AM »

If you are an individual or family without health insurance... Today is your last day to get signed up for Obamacare (until enrollment opens again in November). You must get the sign-up process completed today, then pay for it sometime in April for coverage that begins May 1.

The healthcare.gov process is fairly simple and easy to read.  The only daunting part for me was when i was ultimately presented with the various plans that I could choose from.

Give yourself at least an hour to get through it, maybe more if you are enrolling for family members.

There seemed to be quite a bit of price difference among plans that ostensibly had the similar coverage so i went with the cheapest "silver" plan.  If I had gone down to "bronze" i could have gotten it for free after the subsidy I qualify for.

Even without the subsidy, the offerings looked to be a better than what I've encountered in the individual insurance market prior to this.
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Robert Holmén

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« Reply #11 on: Apr 01, 2014, 12:31PM »

"Open enrollment" is over until November but if, between now and then, you should be in the unfortunate position of losing your job and the company-provided heath insurance that went with it, there is a safety net provision in Obamacare that allows you to get on board with a new plan that is probably much cheaper than a COBRA situation.

This article explains some of the details...

Obamacare Enrollment Is Far From Over

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Robert Holmén

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BGuttman
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« Reply #12 on: Apr 01, 2014, 12:46PM »

1.  Change of job.
2.  Interstate move.
3.  Marriage.
4.  Divorce.
5.  Death of partner.
6.  Student turning 26 and no longer on parents' health plan.
7.  New baby (the baby can be enrolled).

I suspect if your current health care provider from the Exchange decides to cancel your policy (special conditions for this) you can change.

Note that your own death immediately releases you from any requirement of health insurance ;-) :-P
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #13 on: Apr 01, 2014, 01:02PM »


Note that your own death immediately releases you from any requirement of health insurance ;-) :-P

Well that isn't so bad!  ;-)
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SilverBone
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« Reply #14 on: Apr 01, 2014, 05:50PM »


Note that your own death immediately releases you from any requirement of health insurance ;-) :-P

Also, at most venues it's a valid excuse for missing a gig.
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-Howard

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robcat2075

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« Reply #15 on: Apr 03, 2014, 12:17PM »

Boat-missers... If you had trouble getting your Enrollment done before March 31 you have until April 15 to get it done.

You have to "attest" that the site was a problem for you previously but you don't even have to pinky swear to that. If you so much as glanced at something you thought was the site before March 31 you can still jump in now.


Absolutely Positively Last Chance Obamacare Enrollment Deadline Set


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Robert Holmén

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« Reply #16 on: Apr 03, 2014, 12:50PM »

Boat-missers... If you had trouble getting your Enrollment done before March 31 you have until April 15 to get it done.

You have to "attest" that the site was a problem for you previously but you don't even have to pinky swear to that. If you so much as glanced at something you thought was the site before March 31 you can still jump in now.


Absolutely Positively Last Chance Obamacare Enrollment Deadline Set




Until that deadline passes without enough replies Evil

Reminds me of the old "I'm going to count to three" jokes: one, two, two and a half, two and three quarters, ...
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #17 on: Apr 03, 2014, 01:09PM »

Until that deadline passes without enough replies Evil

Reminds me of the old "I'm going to count to three" jokes: one, two, two and a half, two and three quarters, ...

This is the one thing that I haven't understood this entire time.  What exactly does the deadline mean? My understanding was by March 31, the program needed "X" (7 million?) people enrolled in order to have the pool be large enough to be solvent with the amount of subsidies set aside for the program.  Is it more than that? What happens if I were to say, pay the fee instead now and then later... say in August decide that I've changed my mind?
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« Reply #18 on: Apr 03, 2014, 01:34PM »

Not quite sure what you mean by "pay the fee now".  If you sign up you will have to pay for your health insurance.  If you don't sign up now, you will have to pay a penalty when you file your 2014 Income Tax (i.e. between February and April of 2015).

Once you have signed into a policy, you are stuck with it for the year unless you decide not to pay for it in which case you may be dropped (and then subject to the penalty in 2015).
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #19 on: Apr 03, 2014, 02:00PM »



This is the one thing that I haven't understood this entire time.  What exactly does the deadline mean? My understanding was by March 31, the program needed "X" (7 million?) people enrolled in order to have the pool be large enough to be solvent with the amount of subsidies set aside for the program. 

The 7 million figure was an estimate, for planning purposes, of how many people would sign up in this first year of the program and the "individual mandate".   

The actual solvency of the plan depends on the ratio of sick people to healthy people who are enrolled and paying premiums and not on the total number of people.

The Washington Post, while insisting that the administration HAD said that 7 million were necessary, glides past this bit...

Quote
(To be fair, when Sebelius spoke of 7 million being “a realistic target,” she also made this point: “It’s both about numbers and hopefully getting a balanced risk pool. So a lot of our efforts will be using creative ways to outreach to sort of the young healthy population who is eligible but who may not get up every morning thinking about health insurance.” But the media have tended to emphasize the 7 million figure.)


Technically, there were about 30 uninsured people prior to Obamacare and they should all be getting signed up somewhere, right?, but "7 million" was an estimate of what a new program, about which much misinformation has been spread, would be able to sign up in the first year.






Quote
Is it more than that? What happens if I were to say, pay the fee instead now and then later... say in August decide that I've changed my mind?

If you stop paying your insurance premiums, your insurance coverage will end AND at tax time next year there will be some penalty for not being covered. You're required to have health insurance now, either individual or job-provided.

(If you stopped paying your premiums because you got a job that had insurance, the penalty would not apply.)
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Robert Holmén

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