March 24, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MNsure will offer extension to consumers that were unable to complete enrollment, but have taken specific actions to enroll by March 31 deadline
ST. PAUL, Minn.—Today, MNsure announced new procedures that will help people get coverage and avoid a federal tax penalty even if their enrollment isn’t complete when the deadline expires on March 31.
“It’s just like waiting in line to vote after the polls close; if a consumer can show that they have attempted to obtain coverage before the deadline, we will make sure they can complete their enrollment,” said interim CEO Scott Leitz.
“We are anticipating many people may attempt to enroll at the last minute,” said Leitz. “We want to make sure that everyone who has started the process can get enrolled in the plan of their choice, even if the clock runs out before their enrollment is complete.”
Minnesotans have until 11:59 PM on Monday, March 31 to enroll or get “in line” for coverage. Being “in line” can include, but is not limited to:
- Completion of the MNsure Enrollment Attempt Form
- MNsure’s ability to see a consumer’s state of activity in the MNsure IT system
- Submission of a paper application to DHS or county agency
- Navigator or broker records of working with consumer
- Records from the MNsure Contact Center or consumer phone records that show attempted contact\
- Emails sent to MNsure
- Documents/statements made during an appeals process
Leitz says MNsure is working with the six private health insurance companies who sell their plans on the marketplace to ensure anyone who has started the enrollment process before the deadline can still obtain coverage.
Even if a consumer is having difficulties setting up a MNsure account or completing an application, he or she can complete the MNsure Enrollment Attempt Form or call the MNsure Contact Center to ensure their application attempt is logged.
This deadline does not apply to Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare recipients or small employers purchasing coverage through MNsure. The deadline also does not impact people who have a life event, such as marriage, the birth of a child or loss of other qualifying health insurance coverage.
The federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires nearly all Americans to have health insurance, the same way that many states require all drivers to have car insurance. The ACA has mandated that people who are not covered by March 31, 2014 will be subject to a federal penalty of $95 or 1% of their annual income above the tax filing threshold—whichever is greater. A consumer with an annual income of $50,000 would be subject to a $400 - $500 penalty.