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Should I Still Enroll in Health Insurance?

A Picture of Abby Coleman Abby Coleman
11/09/2016

Enroll The 2016 Presidential Election concluded on November 8th with a stunning victory for Donald Trump. One of the platforms Trump ran on was that he would repeal and replace Obamacare. Right now, Americans are at the beginning of the 2017 Open Enrollment Period under Obamacare. Under Obamacare, every American must have health insurance or else they will face a penalty when they file their federal income taxes for that calendar year. This mandate is called the Individual Mandate.

Whether or not Presidential Elect Trump is able to ultimately repeal and replace Obamacare, the fact remains that if an individual or family wants to have health insurance coverage for themselves and their family members, they must enroll for a healthcare plan during the 2017 Open Enrollment Period, because there is just simply no indication when and if Americans will have another opportunity to enroll in health insurance in 2017.

What happens if I don’t get health insurance?

Under Obamacare, if an individual or family didn’t get health insurance, they would be penalized by the IRS when they file their federal income taxes. It’s unknown whether this penalty will exist under Trump’s Presidency, but what will absolutely be true if a family or individual chooses not to get health insurance during the 2017 Open Enrollment Period is that the financial responsibility for all medical bills will remain with the patient.

Before Obamacare, in 2009, the average out-of-pocket cost of medical bills, per family, which included both insured and uninsured families, was $6,815 a year. In 2012, the year before the first Open Enrollment Period, it is reported that the average out-of-pocket costs of medical care rose to $8,700 a person. If you are insured, your out-of-pocket costs under most health insurance plans is limited to your annual deductible and copayments, which is usually much less than the two figures referenced before.

Getting injured and spending time in the hospital without health insurance is expensive. A wrist sprain or pneumonia could leave you with a bill in the tens of thousands of dollars after it’s all said and done. This is why it’s imperative to get health insurance and protect your family.

 

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