Federal health officials have clarified the deadline people must meet under the individual mandate to buy health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, the Washington Post reports. Open enrollment on the new health insurance Marketplace runs through March 31, and so long as people buy a health plan by then, they won’t face a tax penalty for not having health insurance. It often takes a little time for coverage to kick in once someone enrolls in a plan.
Meanwhile, as HealthCare.gov continues to be plagued by technological problems, a Stuart-based insurance agency has been accused of trying to scam customers looking to buy health insurance under Obamacare. The Miami Herald reports that an "Obamacare Enrollment Center" in Tallahassee has been opened by the Fiorella Insurance Agency. The Herald points out customers run the risk of being scammed at unofficial enrollment centers -- and missing out on tax subsidies if they don’t complete enrollment through HealthCare.gov.
In other Affordable Care Act news, a top official with Florida Blue pushed back against reports that the company is dropping 300,000 customers who are having their individual policies canceled, the Florida Times-Union reports. The Jacksonville-based company said customers with individual policies are being transitioned to plans that meet coverage requirements under the federal health law. The company is urging them to enroll in new Florida Blue policies that include “Essential Health Benefits” as required by the federal health law.