The Affordable Care Act has impacted how individuals and small businesses buy health insurance coverage. One of the provisions of the law created online marketplaces through which insurance can be purchased. Pennsylvania opted not to create a state marketplace and therefore uses the Federally Facilitated Marketplace, healthcare.gov.
The plans that are offered on the exchange in many cases are identical to the plans offered off the exchange. In some cases they aren’t the same, you need to be careful in comparing to determine if you are looking at the same product. Importantly, if an insurer offers the same program on and off the exchange, the premium must be the same.
How do you choose the best way to enroll? Here are a couple thoughts.
- Do you qualify for help paying your premium? If yes, the only way to get the premium tax credit (individual or business) is through the online marketplace.
- Do you think that you might qualify for the tax credit in the future? If you purchase your insurance through the marketplace and become eligible for the tax credit, you have to have previously purchased through healthcare.gov to receive the tax credit.
- Are you unable to receive premium help? If your income is outside the range for the tax credit and you feel confident that it will remain at its’ current level, there is probably no benefit to enrolling through healthcare.gov.
- Does your business qualify for the Premium Tax Credit? Enrolling through the SHOP (Federal Marketplace for Business) is the only way to receive the tax credit.
There are a lot of options out there for individuals and businesses. Choosing the right agent will help you navigate the options to make the best decision for you. At Webb Insurance we stay on top of the shifting landscape. Whether through the federal marketplace or directly with the insurance carrier we have developed the expertise to make the process work smoothly and to optimize the cost/benefit for you or your business.
If you’d like to talk more, contact us here or by calling 800-303-6329.