WMDT 47 News - Just three days into open enrollment of the Affordable Care Act, scams are already making headlines.
"People are so not clued in because they are not getting the difference between the Affordable Care Act and Obamacare. There is no difference. And people are not understanding this," Dr. Jeurelle Singleton of Salisbury said.
"It's unconscionable that somebody would prey on the people who need the insurance as a way for them to profit," Gary Masten of Ocean City said.
Scam number one - you'll face jail time if you don't get health care coverage immediately. The penalty is actually a tax - one percent of your income or $95.
Scam number two - Solicitors on the phone or at your door. If someone contacts you saying you need an Affordable Care Act card or need to replace your Medicare card, hang up or shut the door. There's no such thing. The same goes for any emails asking for money and personal information.
"Be a good consumer. Protect the privacy of your own information," licensed insurance agent and vice president of Atlantic Smith Cropper & Deeley Chris Carroll said.
Scam number three - fake navigators. Navigators are federally funded certified experts who can help guide consumers through the health insurance marketplace. If you have any suspicion about whether a navigator is legit, check with your state Marketplace or your state's department of insurance.
If you're using an insurance agent, ask for their National Producer License number or their Consumer Registration number.
"Anybody who's talking to you about these plans should be registered, should have that number available for you," Carroll said.
Insurance agents should also have a logo shield that verifies they are an advisor for the state.
Be wise. Double check everything. Google a website that ends with ".gov," then contact your local insurance administration office to make sure it's legit. Or contact an established, trusted insurance agency in your community. If they haven't heard of it, it's probably fake.
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