Like many Americans who were told that "If you like your health care coverage you can keep it" I thought I wouldn't have any problems, but apparently my plan didn't cover everything required by the Affordable Health Care Act and it was cancelled. I liked it - Obamacare didn't!
Apparently, all plans have to cover maternity and newborn care. Even if you are over 60 or a male, you still have to purchase a plan that covers maternity and newborn care!!!!!!!
So here's where the problems start if you lose your individual insurance.
You have 60 days to find new insurance otherwise you will have to wait until open enrollment which begins on November 15 for coverage beginning January 1, 2015. Aetna, whom I had insurance with and cancelled it without any notification, said they would be happy to offer me another plan at twice the amount of my previous one without loss of coverage. (They stated they sent out letters in April which I didn't receive.) Also, for coverage by the 1st of the month, you have to enroll in a plan by the 15th of the previous month or wait an additional month for coverage. i.e. If you apply by September 15, your coverage will start October 1. If you apply after September 16 your coverage will start November 1.
There are subsidies, but those are complicated too. You can read more about those here and there's a handy calculator on the Kaiser site where you can put in your income and personal information to see if you qualify. Subsidies for an individual are available for incomes between $11,490 and $45,960. Ironically, in some states, if your income is below that amount and below the poverty level you won't get any help. The Affordable Health Care was set up to encourage states to widen the requirements to qualify for Medicaid (Texas is one of the states that chose not to.) If for instance your annual income is $10,000 and below the poverty level you will have to pay the full amount of insurance unless you qualify for Medicaid in other ways (with a dependent). You can apply directly for Medicaid on the Healthcare.gov site.
To find out what is considered income you can view Questions and Answers here
On the Healthcare.Gov site you can also ask to view plans for your state and see what you will have to pay before and after subsidies if you qualify. Subsidies aren't available if you don't go through the Marketplace but don't let that discourage you from finding an insurance agent. They can offer advice, walk you through the process and answer any questions you might have. When you sign up through the Marketplace (Healthcare.gov) enter the agent's NPN (number) to show you have an agent working on your behalf.
Beware - If your income changes it could affect your taxes next year if you have under-estimated or over-estimated your income and received higher subsidies than you are entitled to. Read an article about subsidies and the IRS here
Subsidies are actually Advance Premium Tax Credits and a way to get tax credits before you file your taxes.
And to add insult to injury, if your insurance company chooses to cancel your plan, and you can't find affordable coverage, you will have to pay a penalty for that privilege!
More useful information here with a chart showing poverty levels.
If you have any information that you can add to help others, please let us know in the comments section.
Below info. from IRS.gov site