The 2021 American Rescue Plan
What does it mean to you?
By Coleen Elkins, Licensed Insurance Agent at RV Insurance Benefits & Hill Country Health Insurance and Medicare
Most of us choose to insure our health because it is one of our most precious assets and we don’t know what the future holds.
We tend to take better care of ourselves if we insure our health. Financial assistance at the time of an accident or illness paid by your insurance company helps cover the cost of doctors visits, imaging and urgent care and encourages us to seek care more often for wellness exams.
Health Insurance is not a one size fits all and there are many options choosing an insurance company to share the cost of taking care of your health can be confusing.
After an election year there are usually changes to laws and legislation that will impact us 2021 is one of those years.
What the American Rescue Act is:
It is temporary changes to the Affordable Care Act health insurance Plans due to COVID. You do not have to be diagnosed with COVID to qualify for benefits.
If you are on Medicare the 2021 American Rescue Plan does not change anything for you however it may for your family members not on Medicare so please keep this information.
The 2021 American Rescue Plan reduces the cost of your health insurance and in some cases out of pocket expenses. Enrollment began April 1st until August 15th.
Through tax credits also known as subsidies people under age 65 are able to obtain affordable health insurance.
The Federal Government has recently made changes to how health insurance is offered.
For some the cost can be significantly reduced or even zero.
If you are under age 65 and not on Medicare or Medicare disability you may qualify now to purchase health insurance for a significantly reduced amount as low as zero dollars. Because of the changes to the Affordable Care Act those age 60 to 65 benefit the most due to the recalculations for tax credits to purchase health insurance.
This is possible through a “Special Election Period” under the recently passed American Rescue Plan Act also known as the ARP law.
You do not need a qualifying event to make changes to your current ACA health benefits or to enroll in an Affordable Care Act plan for the first time during the ARP enrollment period.
The benefit changes below became active April 1, 2021 and end on August 15th.
This is a new law passed to lower health insurance premiums for most people currently on an ACA (Affordable Care Act Plan) and make it more accessible to those who have not enrolled in the past.
If you are currently enrolled in an “off exchange plan” (not receiving a tax credit aka subsidy) you may now qualify for a tax credit. Please contact us to determine if you are eligible.
Additionally if one member of your household received unemployment compensation for at least one full week in 2021 the entire family is eligible for reduced premium based on age which can be as low as zero dollar premium. Documentation of unemployment benefits will need to be provided at some point to maintain the benefits applied for.
If you are already on a Marketplace plan you may qualify to lower your premiums. High income wage earners may qualify for a tax credit under the changes.
If you are a business owner offering health insurance to your employees you may have an opportunity to increase your employees benefits and reduce your cost.
The role of an insurance agent is to share their knowledge and assist you in finding the health benefits that will provide you peace of mind affordably. The services of a health insurance agent are at no cost to you. Insurance companies pay them to be your advocate and customer service representative once your policy is in place.