April 30th will mark the end of the last Special Election Period that allowed citizens to extend the time to purchase health insurance in 2015. This specific election period was approved by CMS and made available to people that never bought health insurance in 2014 and discovered that they would owe a penalty for the 2014 tax year.
I Just Bought A Plan I Could Afford!
I have had several conversations in the last few weeks with clients of other agents or purchasers of health insurance plans that dealt directly with the carrier that needed help. In each instance the person lamented that they purchased a health plan based on the price and they didn't take much time to consider other important items in the plan like physician networks, deductibles, or co-pays.
There are only 18 days left until your opportunity to obtain health insurance is gone for the remainder of 2015. "What? Is that correct?" you say? Yes, the end of Open Enrollment will lock you into a health insurance plan for the rest of the calendar year or lock you out of a qualified health plan until January of 2016.
Recently a fellow health insurance broker and I had a discussion about health insurance premiums and how they are increasing at a rate that will doom the industry in just a few years. We lamented about rising deductibles and ever increasing costs and smaller physician networks. We even ventured into the realm of taxation and how higher income earners will certainly be asked to carry a larger burden in the future. Our howling about how bad things have gotten and how they were better in the old days, ok, just a decade ago, led us to a simple question about the deductibility of health insurance premiums and whether individuals and families could write off their health insurance premiums from their taxes. Since we both had different opinions and we've both been selling health insurance for more than 10 years it is clear that clients need clarification and answers on this important subject. Remember, I'm not a tax preparer or accountant, so these are general rules and you'll need to investigate whether they apply to your situation. Consult your own tax advisor.