What Is the Process to Apply for ObamaCare?


Quick Answer

Consumers can search for an Affordable Care Act health insurance plan, also known as ObamaCare, at HealthCare.gov. After site visitors click Get Coverage on the homepage, they can enter their ZIP codes, and HealthCare.gov directs them to the health care exchange website for their state.

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Full Answer

Each state health care exchange website has its own enrollment and application process. Under most circumstances, individuals can only enroll in an Affordable Care Act plan during the annual open enrollment period, normally from November through January. They may be eligible to enroll outside of that period if they lose other health coverage, have or adopt a child, or get married. An online form at HealthCare.gov can help determine eligibility for a special enrollment period.

The Affordable Care Act requires Americans to have qualifying health coverage or pay a fine. Qualifying health coverage can include policies from an employer, Medicare, Medicaid or an individual plan purchased through HealthCare.gov or a state exchange. The fee for not having qualifying coverage is the higher of $325 per adult and $162.50 per child or 2 percent of the household's annual income. Individuals may qualify for waivers of the fee if they meet requirements related to income, health coverage or certain hardships.

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