Can the New Health Insurance Marketplace Help You?
Are you a part-time worker without job-based coverage? Are you currently unemployed or in-between coverage? Do you feel you're paying too much for your current health insurance?

If so, Benefits.gov wants you to know about new resources that will soon be available to help you find health coverage that fits your budget and meets your needs.

Starting October 1, 2013, the HealthCare.gov Health Insurance Marketplace will be open for citizens to compare and apply for health insurance plans. After answering a few questions, citizens will be able to determine eligibility and find affordable healthcare coverage.

Having health insurance is important. Some of the advantages of using the new Marketplace include high-quality coverage, lower insurance costs, and coverage in all states. According to HealthCare.gov, no matter where you live, with just one application you can see all available options and enroll.

You can apply for Marketplace coverage three ways: online, by mail, or in-person with the help of a Navigator or other qualified helper. Telephone help and online chat will be available 24/7 to help you complete your application. If you would like to apply online, here are the next steps to follow:
  • Create an account. You can do this by visiting www.Healthcare.gov and providing some basic information to set up your account.
  • Apply. Answer a few questions about your current situation-including your income, household size, and more. You can use their checklist now, before open enrollment begins, to help you gather the information you'll need ahead of time.
  • Pick a plan. You will see a list of plans and programs that you may be eligible for and compare them side-by-side. You'll also find out if you can get lower costs on monthly premiums and out-of-pocket costs.
  • Enroll. Choose a plan that meets your needs and enroll! Coverage starts as soon as January 1, 2014. If you are in immediate need, you can buy individual insurance that starts before January 1. The Marketplace can help you find your options, but you should be aware that some protections and benefits of the healthcare law are not yet in effect and may not apply to your coverage.

If you have Medicare, you are already insured. According to HealthCare.gov, Medicare is not part of the Health Insurance Marketplace, so you will still have the same benefits and security you have now. You won't have to make any changes.

Whether it's protecting yourself, your family or your business, you can never be too prepared. If you are interested in learning more about other healthcare related benefits, or any of the other more than 1,000 Federal and state programs on Benefits.gov, use our simple and confidential Benefit Finder to find out which benefits you may be eligible to receive.