Answers to your healthcare law questions - FOX 21/27 WFXR Roanoke/WWCW Lynchburg News, Weather

Answers to your healthcare law questions

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Open enrollment begins in a little over two weeks.

Starting on October 1st, anyone that's not insured through their employers or a public insurance program can begin purchasing insurance plans online. Individuals can compare different insurance plans in a virtual marketplace known as a healthcare exchange. Exchanges will compare different insurance plans to allow people to find what best matches their needs.

Open enrollment will run until the end of March.

We asked our viewers what questions they had about the new healthcare mandate.

Woods Rogers Attorney, Joshua Treece, is well-versed in healthcare reform and answered some of those questions.

Will I be penalized if you do not purchase insurance by January first?

If you don't enroll until the middle of March, you're not going to be subject to a penalty as long as there is no other gap in coverage through out the year.

What is the penalty if I don't purchase insurance?

If you do not have coverage by 2014, the penalty is $95 per adult or 1% of the household income. Fees will increase over time.

If I cant afford to buy health insurance, will I receive help from the government?

Individuals and families will qualify for a subsidy if their income is below 400% of the federal poverty level. 400% of the federal poverty level for an individual is about $47,000 and for family of four its about of $100,000.

What will happen I currently have medicare and medicaid?

If you have coverage through Medicare or Medicaid, that's qualifying coverage and you do not have to get coverage through the exchange.

 

There are some exceptions to the individual mandate. To view those and other information about the Affordable Care Act, visit https://www.healthcare.gov/.