Off-Marketplace Obamacare Enrollment
If you don’t think you’re going to be eligible for subsidies through the Marketplace, then you will save a lot of time and money by avoiding the Marketplace altogether.
What you need to know about enrolling outside the Marketplace:
* The only thing you can do on the Marketplace that you cannot do off the Marketplace is apply for subsidies.
* You will find Obamacare-compliant plans off the Marketplace that are not available on it.
In South Carolina, these include plans through BlueChoice HealthPlan and plans through BlueCross BlueShield that cost less than their Marketplace plans. We expect these plans to be comparable in price to each other, though the BlueChoice plans will typically have better benefits.
These off-Marketplace plans follow all of the rules of Obamacare and function just like Marketplace plans (other than the subsidies).
* The Open Enrollment period is the same: November 1 – December 15, 2018.
Again, this is the only time of the year when you can get an Obamacare-compliant health insurance plan (outside of special circumstances).
To get prices and/or to enroll in an off-Marketplace plan in Georgia, please contact us.
There are alternatives to Obamacare you may want to consider.
If you’re not concerned with covering pre-existing conditions, you may want to take a look at options other than Obamacare plans. These won’t work for everybody, but they will definitely save you money.
* Short-Term Health Insurance.
Think of a short-term plan as collision coverage – it’s a safety net you put in place in case something happens. They don’t typically have a lot of copay-style benefits before the deductible, but provide good catastrophic coverage with deductibles ranging from $1,000 to much higher.
The Trump administration recently relaxed some of the guidelines on these plans, making them a much simpler alternative. You will no longer have to pay a fine for not having Obamacare-compliant coverage. It is much less expensive to purchase a short-term health insurance plan than to pay the full premium on a non-subsidized Obamacare plan. So if you’re healthy and not subsidy-eligible, this is something you should consider.
* Health-Sharing Ministries.
These are faith-based alternatives to health insurance. They are exempt from Obamacare so there is no possibility of being fined for not having a compliant plan. HSM’s are not insurance but function very similarly. They do have certain lifestyle requirements, so they aren’t for everybody.