Pennie.com was established in 2019 to replace Healthcare.gov as the official marketplace to buy Affordable Care Act (ACA) health plans. In Pennsylvania it is the only place to qualify for Federal subsidies that make health insurance affordable. The last date to sign up for a plan this year is on January 15th, 2021, so if you’ve been thinking about getting health insurance, now is the time!
Unfortunately, healthcare is expensive. But living without health insurance can be very risky and one’s retirement savings can be threatened or wiped out due to unexpected medical expenses. While not perfect, Obamacare (you can call it Trump care or Biden care if you like) has gone a long way to helping make health insurance affordable through federal subsidies for which people up to 400% above the poverty line can qualify.
The subsidies are advanced premium tax credits (APTC) that are paid to the health insurance companies on your behalf, so the premium you pay each month is affordable. In many cases, the monthly premium can be covered entirely or substantially by these APTCs. The APTCs are dependent on your income levels, marital status, and how many people are in your household. To get an estimate go to Pennie.com, try out the premium tax credit estimator at the IRS here: https://www.taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/estimator/premiumtaxcreditchange/.
The most important thing that someone needs to do is to create an account with Pennie.com and fill out the application. If you need help, there are help lines, assisters and brokers. I am a broker at Pennie.com and I am ready to help anyone in Pennsylvania to start or finish feel free to call or email me.
While the process is not overly difficult, having the help of a Broker or assistor can make the process much easier, especially for someone who is not tech savvy. They can help explain the terminology of health care plans that are confusing. They can also help explain the different components of plans. While plans are rated by Bronze, Silver, and Gold, the differences can be subtle enough that a Silver plan can be better for a client than a Gold plan. Also, a plan with a lower monthly premium is not necessarily cheaper once you use it due to differences in annual deductibles, maximum out of pocket costs, co-payments, co-insurance, fees for lab work and x-rays and other details.
Getting help from an assistor or broker does not cost you anything, but it gives you a person who can be your advocate and can help you make an informed choice. Most importantly, if you are thinking about getting health insurance, sign up for a plan through www.pennie.com before January 15th!
As a Certified Financial Planner™ professional, and a trained anthropologist, I understand that finances are an important part of a happy and fulfilling life. Originally from Delaware, I now live in Gettysburg with my family and enjoy cooking, gardening, playing music, talking, and a variety of outdoor activities.
I share financial advice with the Adams County community through my business, Hill Financial Solutions.