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Unfair to apply differing ACA deadlines, consumers say

Individuals who’ve begun the enrollment process for health insurance benefits but haven’t finished were recently given a reprieve, enabling them to avoid the penalty that comes with not having a health plan in place. But a considerable number of Americans believe this extension isn’t fair.

Nearly 8 in 10 – 76 percent – of respondents said they think applying different extensions is unfair, according to a recent poll performed by insurance-information company HealthPocket. Meanwhile, less than one-quarter said they believe the delay was justifiable.

Even among individual states, there are varying deadlines. HealthPocket found the end of the open enrollment period differs by as much as three months, specifically among those states where the exchanges are run by the federal government rather than the states.

For those who fail to enroll in the appropriate period, they could be fined $95 or as much as 1 percent of their annual income. However, it’s not clear which penalty will be enforced or how rigorously it will be implemented, according to The New York Times. If it’s 1 percent, the penalty would be just under $300 for someone making an annual wage of $40,000.

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Erin Woulfe
Erin Woulfe
Erin Woulfe likes to write about things that matter. Keeping her finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the public sector world, she blogs about the latest legislative news and employee benefit trends that affect our school, city and county clients. She’s been with NIS since 2002. “I love connecting to our clients and providing them with the tools they need in order to administrate their plan,” says Erin. “Whether that be materials to educate their employees on certain benefits, how to effectively communicate change within an organization or just providing tips and how-to’s to help them make their job easier.”

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