Last Minute Questions Answered Before Healthcare Deadline - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Last Minute Questions Answered Before Healthcare Deadline

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WICOMICO CO., Md. - It took awhile for Bonnie Toadvine to even access the Maryland Health Connection website.

Now that she has, Toadvine is thinking about not even signing up this year, because she says its going to cost her a third of what she is earning this year.

"We're not going to pay a third of our annual income for health insurance, not going to happen," said Toadvine.

So how much will it cost people like Toadvine this year?

Chris Carroll of Atlantic, Smith, Cropper & Deeley says the fines will be either one percent of income or $95, whichever is greater. Carroll says for someone making $20,000, it could be a $200 fine. 

"Only one percent or 95 dollars hasn't been enough of a motivation to move those people from uninsured to insured," said Carroll.

What if you're unemployed?

Carroll says if you don't have income, the government doesn't require you to get health insurance and you won't be fined.

But besides fines, Carroll says he's dealing with at least 10 people a day, each with a unique situation. A family of four making $90,000 a year, with two kids in college, would be eligible for a $12,000 tax credit. But any money earned by those children is counted in the family's income and if it goes even one dollar over their projected income, that family loses every penny of the credit.
     
"Once we go over 400 percent of the poverty, there's no protection in the law and there's no available tax credit," said Carroll. "It goes from $12,000 to zero in that situation."

If you still haven't signed up for health insurance and are trying to navigate enrollment, the Lower Shore Health Insurance Assistance Program is helping the community with getting coverage with two sessions scheduled for this week.

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