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Profitt Report: What you should know about the Affordable Care Act open enrollment period

Photo credit: MGN

There’s been a lot of talk about repealing and replacing Obamacare, but that hasn’t happened. ACA is still the law and the tax credits for 2018 are still intact, which means if you buy health insurance through the Affordable Care Act exchanges, or want to get coverage, you need to pay attention to the open enrollment period.

Consumer Reports says despite all the talk in Washington, the Affordable Care Act is still the law of the land, Americans who don’t receive health insurance through their jobs, medicaid or medicare, now is the time of year to choose an individual health insurance plan. to be covered in 2018. For most people, you must have coverage or pay a penalty.

Open Enrollment for the health care exchange in our state runs from Nov. 1 to Dec. 15. Choosing a health care plan is a complex decision. Consumer Reports suggests these strategies.

“With all the earlier uncertainty about the ACA's future, some insurance companies pulled out of the ACA exchanges, but every county in the U.S. will have at least one insurer offering coverage. But in many places, your options may be different than they were last year,” said Donna Rosato, Consumer Reports Money Editor.

Even if you can re-enroll in the same plan if you had one in 2017, it might not be your best option. It’s important to know that tax credits can be used for any exchange plan, But credit amounts change year-to-year based on the second lowest Silver plan and your income, which may have changed, so it's best to compare plans.

And pay special attention to the deadlines. The open enrollment window on the exchange is only from Nov. 1 to Dec. 15. So start your research early and give yourself enough time to weigh all of your options.

Because choosing the right insurance plan is complicated, Consumer Reports says you can get help comparing plans and enrolling at HealthCare.gov or ConsumersUnion.org/OpenEnrollment

All Consumer Reports material Copyright 2017 Consumer Reports, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Consumer Reports is a not-for-profit organization which accepts no advertising. It has no commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site. For more information visit consumer.org.

The Profitt Report wants to hear from you - please send consumer questions and story ideas to ProfittReport@WSMH.com

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