California Health Insurance Exchange

The idea is to insure more people which will make health insurance premiums more affordable for all of us.

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Covered California - Health Benefit Exchange

Effective Immediately: Our agency will no longer be able to assist new enrollees into the Covered California system (also known as "on exchange"). However, if you are looking for an "off exchange" plan (buying directly from the insurance company) where you won't have to provide household income information, tax returns, bank statements, etc., we are here to assist you. Call us today at (800) 560-2443

January 1, 2014 is when most of us are going to be required to have health insurance coverage or pay a penalty for going without. This was mandated by law as a result of the recent Supreme Court decision made in June 2012.

The idea is to insure more people which will make insurance premiums more affordable for all of us. This has many wondering what their options are and how they will fit into a new very complicated system.

The "Exchange" also known as "Covered California" or "Health Benefit Exchange" has been created in order to offer good quality coverage options that make buying health insurance simple and affordable. Individuals, families, and small businesses with less than 50 employees are able to shop, compare and purchase health insurance online through the exchanges or outside the exchanges by enrolling in a health insurance plan offered by private insurers. You have many options to choose from and you can shop in the fall of each year. Any health insurance company offering coverage through the Health Insurance Exchange must offer 1 plan in each of the 4 levels: bronze, silver, gold, and platinum. Gold and platinum will offer the greatest benefit. These plans will be required to offer at least a basic level of benefits to include essential health benefits as defined by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). These benefits would include ambulatory services, emergency services, maternity and newborn care, hospitalization, mental health benefits, substances use disorders, prescription drugs, rehabilitation, lab services, preventive and wellness care, chronic disease management, oral and vision care for pediatric services and other pediatric services.

If you have been unable to purchase health insurance in the past because of a pre-existing condition and you don't have access to employer offered benefits, you can breathe a big sigh of relief. Effective January 1, 2014, insurance companies will no longer be able to decline coverage because of a pre-existing condition. They also can't charge you a higher rate because of a pre-existing condition. All of the health insurance plans offered through the Exchanges will be guaranteed issue.

Individuals that are not already receiving insurance through Medicare, Medicaid or through their employer whose income is within a certain federal poverty level will be able to qualify for subsidy assistance in the form of tax credits. The assistance is only available to those who buy through the Health Insurance Exchanges.

Undocumented immigrants will not be able to buy health insurance through the exchanges. You'll be required to provide tax return info, household income along with identity verification info. If you don't want to disclose any of that, you will want to shop for insurance outside of the exchange.

If you need assistance with plan options and enrollment, call us today at 800) 560-2443.

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