Monday, March 31, 2014 || By Michael Romain
Today is the last day to apply for coverage under the new Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as Obamacare. After this point, those who remain uninsured will face penalties of $95 per adult, up to $285 per family, or 1 percent of one’s taxable income. However, federal officials announced on Tuesday that if consumers at least start the application process today, they won’t face subsequent fines.
According to a recent Washington Post article, “all consumers who have begun to apply for coverage on HealthCare.gov, but who do not finish by Monday, will have until about mid-April to ask for an extension.”
“Under the new rules, people will be able to qualify for an extension by checking a blue box on HealthCare.gov to indicate that they tried to enroll before the deadline. This method will rely on an honor system; the government will not try to determine whether the person is telling the truth.”
In the past several months, there has been a push by Democratic legislators such as Congressman Danny K. Davis and State Rep. Chris Welch to inform consumers of the new law and get people signed up. Earlier in March, Rep. Welch sponsored an ACA enrollment event at the Maywood Public Library, one of several enrollment events that the Library has hosted within the past year.