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How the Affordable Care Act Will Affect You | Health

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How the Affordable Care Act Will Affect You

For almost 2 million Georgians who don't have medical insurance, Tuesday is a big day.

Enrollment opens for the Affordable Care Act's online "marketplace" where you can shop for health insurance.

Think of it like a one-stop shop online, like Amazon or Orbitz, where you can shop around for the best health care plan for you.

By the end of enrollment on March 31st, virtually all Americans will need to buy some sort of health insurance plan or face fines.

Those fines will start at $95 per person for 2014 and go up each year. In 2015, it will cost $325 per person to be uninsured. In 2016, that number jumps to $695. 

There's a cap on the fines for families; however, if you are not covered under a health insurance plan, you will have to pay 100% of your medical care out-of-pocket.

The federal Department of Health and Human Services says the online marketplace will offer Georgians an average of 50 health care plans.

They will offer four levels of health care plans: bronze, silver, gold, and platinum.

Each one has different premiums and out-of-pocket rates.

With the bronze plan, for example, you'll pay lower premiums each month.

The catch: you'll foot more of the bill when you do get medical care.

That ratio changes for each plan level.

So, if you need more medical care and visit the doctor often, you'll probably want to get a gold or platinum plan. 

How much you pay in premiums will depend on your age, income and family size.

For example, a 4-person family in Bibb County could pay around $800 a month for a mid-level care plan.

With tax credits and subsidies, that number can drop to $280 a month if the household makes less than $50,000 a year.

If you choose not to buy coverage by March 31, you will have to pay fines and wait until the next enrollment period to buy a plan.

To get coverage starting on January 1, you will have to purchase your plan by December 14.

For more information and to register for the online marketplace, visit www.healthcare.gov.

Follow 13WMAZ's Anita Oh on Twitter @anita_oh and ask questions on Facebook at Anita Oh WMAZ as she breaks down the health care overhaul.


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