How to Get Affordable Health Insurance in Massachusetts

How to Get Affordable Health Insurance in Massachusetts from North Carolina Lifestyle Blogger Adventures of Frugal Mom

Health insurance is a major expense for American households. You want to ensure that you’re getting quality Massachusetts health insurance at an affordable rate. When the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, it made it easier for individuals and families to purchase insurance of their own accord and expanded access to small businesses with 50 employees or fewer. Also known as Obamacare, the Affordable Care Act outlawed the denial of coverage due to preexisting conditions and established income-based subsidies for insurance premiums. The Affordable Care Act also established a nationwide marketplace where coverage could be purchased from participating insurers. While most states use this federal marketplace, the state of Massachusetts actually maintains its own marketplace called the Massachusetts Health Connector. This state-run exchange hosts a number of private insurers and makes it easy for those seeking coverage to compare rates. If you and your family live in Massachusetts and you’re seeking affordable healthcare coverage, here’s what you need to do. 

Check Your Eligibility 

If you’re planning to shop for coverage through the Massachusetts Health Connector, you’ll want to take a look at your income. You will qualify for a subsidy so long as your household income is not more than 4 times the federal poverty level. If your income is higher than this threshold, you may still qualify for an exception. In either case, a subsidy will lower the price you pay for your healthcare premium each month. Some enrollees opt to pay the full price upfront and have the difference paid out to them in a tax credit. Others choose to have the government pay the subsidy directly to the insurer of their choice. Once you’ve verified your income, you’re ready to start comparing insurance plans on the marketplace. 

Shop Around

Thanks to the Massachusetts Health Connector, getting affordable health insurance coverage is no longer difficult. When you enter the Massachusetts exchange, take some time to shop around and compare prices. While you’ll have the benefit of a subsidy for your monthly insurance premium, there are still other factors to consider. Keep in mind that different plans will come with different networks, copays, and deductibles. Depending on your needs, and the needs of your family, each of these factors will influence how effective a typical plan is. 

Open Enrollment

If you wish to get coverage through the Massachusetts Health Connector, and you meet the necessary income qualifications, then you’re ready to enroll. Open enrollment for the state of Massachusetts typically runs through early November through mid-January, but the exact date changes each year so be sure to verify. Major life events including relocation, marriage, and childbirth may even allow you to qualify for enrollment outside the typical enrollment window. In the event that an insurer denies your claim for a qualifying life event, you can even file a waiver with the Massachusetts Office of Patient Protection. These waivers can be submitted online, by mail, or by fax, and you can expect to receive a response within 30 days.

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