Obamacare: Step by step how to enroll

How can I sign up for Obamacare?  I need step by step instructions.

Keep It Simple

Dear Keep It Simple,

The very first step is to decide whether you qualify to go to the exchange /marketplace at all.

You can go to the marketplace if and only if you do not have an employer plan offered to you.  The employer’s plan has to meet health reform standards.  You would have received a letter from the plan about this last fall, or when you joined it if you joined later.  Note: if you have access to an employer plan through your spouse, you also do not qualify to go to the marketplace.

Assuming you do not have an employer plan, then you would proceed to the Health Insurance Marketplace, Affordable Care Act site and set up an account.  The site will guide you through your plan options, and applying for subsidies.  

Before you visit the site, you will need to have in hand your Social Security number and an estimate of your 2014 income.  For some people, estimating their current year income is difficult.  Their income varies from month to month, or they are currently unemployed and don’t know when they might have work again.

I encourage you to think about this carefully.  If you underestimate your income, you could end up having to pay back the government a lot of money that they paid for your health insurance. 

I think you will find the steps easy to follow, and now that the open enrollment season is over, the website should be easy to get to and use.

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Linda Riddell

About Linda Riddell

A published author and health policy analyst with 25 years’ experience, Linda Riddell's goal is to alleviate the widespread ailment of not knowing what your health plan can do for you.