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How to Purchase Insurance

October 1, 2013 Ryan Schuster

As a result of the Affordable Care Act, health insurance marketplaces or exchanges in each state began enrolling people seeking insurance coverage starting on October 1, 2013, with coverage beginning as early as January 1, 2014. The online marketplaces, similar to an online travel agency for health insurance, will allow individuals and small businesses to compare and purchase insurance products.

But everyone doesn't need to buy health insurance through an online marketplace. Those who already receive insurance coverage through their job or their spouse's employer, and those who purchase individual insurance coverage directly from an insurance company, can continue to do so. As a result of the Affordable Care Act, some individual plans we offer will need to be replaced with new plans. If you have an individual plan that will be changing, we will let you know.

Essentially, if you already receive insurance through an employer-sponsored plan or buy insurance on your own, you can continue doing so (as long as the employer continues to offer insurance coverage). The online marketplaces are another option for those without insurance coverage and those who choose to purchase coverage in a different way instead of through an employer or directly from an insurance company.

Those with household incomes at or below 400 percent of the federal poverty level (those who earn roughly $46,000 per year as an individual or roughly $94,000 per year for a family of four in 2013) may also be eligible for tax credits to help them afford coverage on an exchange. Check out our tax credit calculator to see if you qualify.

Visit our health reform site at ItStartsWithBlueND.com to get a quote, find out more about health reform, and get started.