Health Care Sharing Ministries Surge in Popularity, MagnifyMoney Analysis Shows

Part I: What is Obamacare?


I've come to Florida to go door-to-door with the foot soldiers of Get Covered America, the boots-on-the-ground division of Enroll America, which bills itself as a "nonpartisan c 3 organization whose mission is to maximize the number of uninsured Americans who enroll in health coverage made available by the Affordable Care Act. An analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation said that a number of insurers have requested double-digit premium increases for Asked about vulnerable Democrats who have criticized President Obama's flawed healthcare law, Wasserman Schultz said they are running their own race. Henry goes into even greater detail. Obamacare PR push goes silent.

Part II: Obamacare costs and tax subsidies


Applications are subject to additional terms and conditions. Rate is quoted with AutoPay discount, which is only available when you select AutoPay prior to loan funding. Rates under the invoicing option are 0. Subject to credit approval. Conditions and limitations apply. Advertised rates and terms are subject to change without notice. Tiffany Hamilton knew as a college student that she would one day be an entrepreneur.

With that in mind, she made sure to enlist the help of a financial planning company when she bought her first life insurance plan at 21, as she was just getting her start in real estate. When her salary increased, she decided she needed more coverage than that. As a single woman with a burgeoning business, she wanted to make sure she had enough coverage to take care of any debts and leave something for her mother.. Her insurance representative at the time encouraged her to up her coverage.

Now 35 and running her own real estate business based in Tallahassee, Fla. Is it possible to be overinsured? As we grow in our careers, home life and families, paying for life insurance becomes another one of those obligatory items on our financial to-do lists, like establishing a k or an emergency fund. But the sheer volume of life insurance options available may have created a unique problem: Some of us might be overly insured.

That is, our insurance coverage may be wildly disproportionate to our salaries and overall net worth. Joel Ohman, a Tampa, Fla. Of course, there are other options for anyone who has a large estate, want to make charitable contributions, needs special tax breaks or has other complicated financial circumstances to consider.

Most insurance websites include insurance calculators to make it easy to figure out what your costs could be for a variety of different plans. John Barnes, a certified financial planner and owner of My Family Life Insurance , said those cost savings can be important for families. Chris Acker , a chartered life underwriter, chartered financial consultant and independent life insurance broker in Palo Alto, Calif.

Plus, you can always get additional insurance later. But he cautions against applying one piece of advice across all situations. There are two main types of life insurance: Term insurance and permanent insurance. When consumers typically think about life insurance, they are looking for an option that will provide their families with financial stability if the unthinkable happens. Permanent insurance does exactly what the name implies: It provides lifelong coverage.

In addition to the death benefit also provided by term-life insurance, permanent insurance also accumulates cash value.

But with that added benefit comes pricier premiums. Whole life is the most common type of permanent insurance. With a whole life policy, the premium never changes. Part of the premiums goes into a savings component of the policy, which builds cash value and can be withdrawn or borrowed. That cash value also has a guaranteed rate of return. Variable life offers the same death benefit, but allows consumers the option to seek a better return by allocating premiums to investments like stocks and bonds.

Universal life lets you vary your premium payments and gives a minimum death benefit as long as the premiums are sufficient to sustain it. Variable universal life insurance is a sort of mix between variable and universal life, meaning consumers can vary premium payments and can also allocate them among investment subaccounts. Those who want a policy that offers cash value and stable premiums. There are also tax advantages to this type of policy.

Those who want the same advantages as a whole-life policy, plus the option of allocating premiums toward different stocks and bonds. Those who want the same advantages of any permanent policy with the option of varying premium payments. For example, those who may want to start with a lower premium that increases as their finances do. Those who want the option to vary premium payments, but also the option to allocate those payments toward different stocks and bonds.

Customers pay a premium each month and are covered through the specified term. This is typically the cheapest insurance option. Those whose need for coverage will disappear or change at some point, like when a debt is paid or children reach adulthood and go to college.

Also good for those looking for a low-cost option. Even within term- and whole-life insurance, there are additional products you could be offered, like mortgage life, return of premium in which your premium is returned if you outlive your initial term and final expense which covers just funeral expenses. Use a life insurance calculator. Wealthy families, those with special-needs family members and others in unique situations will also have different insurance needs.

Most insurance websites offer calculators to help consumers decide how much coverage to take. The consumer website lifehappens. Get multiple free quotes. Consumers can also get free quotes from multiple insurers from sites such as My Family Insurance, InsuranceProviders. Keep this in mind: Choose the right advisor. You want someone who works best for you and inspires comfort.

Hamilton said she not only interviewed potential reps this last go-around, she also requested references and asked them about their company philosophy before making a decision. LifeHappens suggests that consumers use referrals to find an insurance provider. Seek out independent agents. Understand what it means to be a fiduciary. Those who hold a CFP designation like Ohman are expected to provide fiduciary care to their clients.

There are four independent agencies that provide this information: Do your research and find the ratings from each of the four agencies, because some companies may highlight a positive rating from one agency and play down a lower rating from another agency. Barnes said regardless of whom you choose to represent your insurance needs, make sure you have a level of comfort. During that first meeting or so, Barnes says the agent should spend time getting to know you and your situation without necessarily trying to sell you on a product.

For her part, Hamilton says she also looked into whether companies were commission- or fee-based. That means you have the option to change policies, as Hamilton did. Some consumers also choose to buy additional policies down the road. Then you can figure out if you want to keep the insurance. Crystal Lewis Brown is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Crystal here. Still, that represents a mere fraction of the estimated million pets living in U.

One factor holding pet owners back from investing in an insurance plan for their pet could be cost. Those costs can become much higher depending on the age of your pet, type of animal and where you live. The most basic plans offer one or the other: At a more comprehensive level, plans can cover illnesses and wellness visits as well as routine checkups. Prices also vary based on what type of pet you have. For example, Nationwide offers a comprehensive dog insurance plan that covers wellness exams and visits, accidents, hereditary conditions, chronic conditions, and pay back up to 90 percent on some veterinary bills.

You can pay less and get less coverage. While pet insurance can cover many emergencies, the type of plan you purchase will determine if the insurance pays for medical care beyond accidents. Wellness visits and vaccines are not covered by Trupanion, for example, which insures only cats and dogs. Pet insurers such as Trupanion and Nationwide do not cover pre-existing conditions that the pet had before coverage began.

Nationwide limits coverage for hereditary disorders by breed — such as cardiac arrhythmia in Boxers — in some plans, but offers full coverage for those conditions in its comprehensive Whole Pet with Wellness plan.

For this reason, the best time to purchase pet insurance is when the pet is young because there is little chance of pre-existing conditions. The average age of insured cats and dogs was 4. Insurance appeals to pet owners who prefer to pay a monthly cost for future health expenses instead of doling out hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars when care is needed.

When deciding whether or not to purchase pet insurance for your animal, there are several factors to consider other than cost:. Insurance companies provide a variety of plans. Pet insurance can vary due to different factors such as species, geographic location, age and gender. Paying for a more expensive plan may be worth the money if you make several visits to the vet each year.

For example, Nationwide offers these examples: Coverage for a small mixed-breed puppy, under the age of one and located in San Diego, Calif. While pet insurance has been in the United States for about 35 years, the awareness and interest is much smaller than their European — most specifically British — counterparts, say insurers and veterinarians.

Platt says when he worked in the United Kingdom, he would fill out three to four insurance claim forms a day. Platt says he has filled out only three to four claims while living and working in the United States the past 11 years.

Shop around and compare rates. Providers include major home, auto and life insurers, such as Nationwide and Geico, while some companies, such as Trupanion, PetFirst, and Healthy Paws, specialize in insuring animals. Free trials from pet shelters. Pet shelters also sign up owners for insurance, typically by offering a free trial for the first 30 days. However, after the trial, you could be charged unless you cancel the policy.

Some companies, such as Deloitte , Microsoft, and Chipotle Mexican Grill offer pet insurance as an employee benefit. See if your employer offers a policy. Marena Galluccio is a writer at MagnifyMoney.

You can email Marena here. Brynne Conroy is a personal finance writer based in Pittsburgh. She enjoys exploring the space where personal finances meet with individuals' day-to-day challenges and triumphs, and writes about such issues for various publications both on the web and in print.

In addition, she regularly releases new content on her women's finance blog, Femme Frugality. Jana Lynch was 27 years old when she was formally diagnosed with depression. At the time, Lynch was working full-time for a social service agency. Rather than resign outright, she decided to take a four-month leave on short-term disability. A break, she thought, might help. But when the time came to return to work, the same issues began to surface again.

In the end, she chose her mental health over working full time. In a study that followed workers over the course of six months, researchers found workers with depression dropped out of the workforce at a rate of 12 percent compared to only 2 percent of their peers. While depression may force affected workers out of active employment at higher rates, it is also true that those who become unemployed are more likely to show signs of depression — three times more likely, according to a NIH study.

Some research shows losing your job impacts depression because it makes it hard to cope financially, but other studies suggest it has little impact. This then exacerbates their depression further. Abigail Perry, author of Frugality for Depressives , had already been formally diagnosed with depression as a part of a bipolar disorder when unrelated chronic fatigue forced her out of traditional employment.

A lot of therapy and medication management doctor visits later, I finally started believing that I might have worth despite not being able to work. Richardson notes that many are able to develop coping strategies, allowing themselves to stay in the workplace. Only then was I able to shift into a business model that worked for me.

Richardson recommends going to your manager or supervisor for access to resources when your symptoms become too much to bear. If you work at a larger company, it may be more appropriate to get in touch with your human resources department. This means your employer cannot fire you because of your disability — in this case, depression — and that they have to provide reasonable accommodations in order to allow you to do your job.

But depression makes it difficult to look for clients. It will get better at some point. Lynch and Lewis both note exercise as a way of sustaining a healthy hobby. Lewis teaches yoga, and Lynch regularly attends a gym. While not the primary goal, a side effect of going to the gym or studio happens to be spending time with other people of similar interests. Emerging research suggests that mindfulness may not only alleviate depression, but could prevent relapses.

Richardson has produced a free mindfulness resource, which can be accessed here. By understanding and confronting these challenges head-on, there are strategies you can use to protect your finances as you learn to manage depression. During these episodes, he found four key ways that their finances suffered. Lynch notes that before she set up automatic payments, she would have trouble remembering pay upcoming bills. This led to unnecessary costs like late fees. It found that missing bills was a financial manifestation of avoidant coping behaviors.

Those with depression have a harder time completing tasks like budgeting because planning ahead is made more difficult. The study also revealed that rational thinking and the ability to remember past purchases in order to log them into a spreadsheet were impaired.

Alternately, you may be more likely to spend money on things that you think will make you happy or comforted — from convenience gadgets to home décor to clothes. This stress leads to more dire mindsets, like extreme anxiety and hopelessness. For help developing more coping strategies or getting resources that can help you manage your depression, consider seeking out mental health care services. Therapists can help you deal with the things that depression makes harder with strategies, workarounds, or just working through past events that are contributing to or causing your current depression.

Therapy and medication management specialists can be expensive, though. Many regions in America face a shortage of mental health care providers , and the matter is further complicated when you consider that some providers may be out-of-network, bringing copays up even if you are currently insured. Another affordable resource is public mental health care clinics, though their availability may be limited.

Licensed Clinical Social Workers LCSWs and other counselors often accept insurance and are able to provide therapy, referring you out to a psychiatrist for prescription needs when necessary.

Lynch did seek therapy and go on medication for a while, though she now leans on other coping mechanisms such as avoiding triggers and exercising regularly. Today, Lynch operates from a place of acceptance. Depression is a part of her life that she has learned to deal with. Brynne Conroy is a writer at MagnifyMoney.

You can email Brynne here. Career , depression , mental health. Sasha Aurand has had to scramble for four years to find high-quality mental health care she can afford on her salary from running a website on psychology and sex. The year-old New Yorker suffers from post-traumatic stress syndrome, depression, and anxiety, and has no health insurance.

Aurand originally sought help for these conditions while still a college student in Indiana. Aurand is not alone, having to be resourceful finding doctors and therapists in her price range. According to the State of Mental Health in America report , one out of five American adults with mental illness report they are unable to get the treatment they need, often due to cost. And with an uncertain health care climate in Washington, the challenges are unlikely to ease soon.

If you live near a university with a graduate psychology program, it most likely has an in-house clinic. You can see a trainee at one of these clinics for a reduced fee. Yes, the therapists are students, but each one is closely supervised by a seasoned, licensed professional. Most trainees work at these clinics for a year or less. Aurand now sees the doctor every three months. If you find a therapist you like, let him or her know your financial concerns and inquire about paying a lower fee.

With a sliding scale, you get all the benefits of good, one-on-one therapy at a lower rate. To avoid this, discuss payments every few months to see if an adjustment is needed. There are many online tools, including Breakthrough. Rates vary, but if you search, you can find someone affordable. Several California-based therapists among the most expensive in the nation on Breakthrough.

A note of caution: Choose someone licensed in your state. You can get high-quality, one-on-one therapy without ever having to leave your home, office, or pajamas — and at a reasonable cost. Therapy apps — which allow you to text or chat with a licensed therapist — are becoming increasingly popular. Among the many available are Betterhelp.

You can get help anytime, anywhere, even while sitting in a business meeting or on the subway. And some people find the technology alienating. You can find psychological and psychiatric care at public mental health clinics, which offer services for free or on a sliding scale, based on your income.

Organizations devoted to helping survivors of sexual assault and domestic abuse also offer a wide range of services, including free counseling. And religious organizations, such as Jewish Family Services, often offer therapy on a sliding scale. The best way to find resources in your community, says Richardson, is to dial the information hotline, , on your phone or look online at http: The demand at public health clinics is huge, and staffs are often overwhelmed.

When it comes to finding affordable mental health care, persistence is the key. Laura Hilgers is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Laura here.

She's passionate about helping others do more with their money, their careers, and their lives. She can reach her via her site KaliHawlk. Medicare will likely play a role in helping you mitigate those costs in your golden years. The federal government offers Medicare as an insurance program for permanently disabled Americans and those 65 or older.

The Social Security Administration is responsible for funding the program, and most of its funding comes from a Medicare payroll tax you might have noticed on your pay stubs it ranges from 1.

The majority of working Americans become eligible for Medicare coverage when they turn But the program does become much more complicated when you start digging into the details of what specific benefits make the most sense for you. But you need to sign up for Medicare if:. If you need to manually apply, you can do so online here. You also have the option of going to your local Social Security office or calling to apply at You can receive this coverage for free as long as you paid at least 10 years into Social Security.

This can include medical equipment and physical therapy. It may cover some preventive care services, too, like screening for certain diseases including cancer and glaucoma.

The costs for Part B are more complicated than Part A. Henry goes into even greater detail. Henry explains other services like cosmetic surgery and alternative medicine get excluded from coverage, too. Medicare coverage gets more complicated when you look at additional parts of the program. Whereas Medicare is a program offered by the federal government, private insurance companies offer coverage with Medicare Advantage Plans which the government still regulates.

Some Part C plans offer more services not included in traditional Medicare, including prescription drug coverage. Part D plans are also offered by private insurers and are separate policies from Medicare Parts A and B. Just like Part C coverage, Part D plans vary widely in what they cover and their costs. The White House and Republicans in Congress have promised to repeal the Affordable Care Act and are in the process of proposing radical changes to the current health care system.

But most of the proposed changes affect Medicaid , not Medicare. But Speaker Paul Ryan has talked about making the following changes:. Again, this is all just talk for now. Kali Hawlk is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Kali at Kali magnifymoney.

Here are some hints: The money you earn in the years to come will allow you to pay your bills, save for the future, and create a secure financial foundation for you and your family. By sending you a monthly check that replaces some or all of your income, it protects your biggest financial asset from those worst-case scenarios.

Disability insurance is often ignored both because the prospect of becoming disabled seems remote and because the premiums can be hard to swallow, especially for young families who are already struggling to pay for child care and all the other expenses that come with having young kids. According to WebMD , your odds of becoming disabled before you retire are about 1 in 3. So the big question is this: How long would your savings be able to support you, and what would you do if you needed help past that point?

Most people would struggle to make it more than a few months, which is exactly why disability insurance is so valuable. Both can be helpful, but they play very different roles in your financial plan. Short-term disability insurance only offers benefits for a relatively limited amount of time.

Most short-term disability insurance policies cover you for months, though they can provide coverage for up to two years. There is typically a waiting period of up to 14 days before the insurance kicks in to prevent it from covering minor illness and injury. One of the most common uses of short-term disability insurance is during maternity leave. Many, though not all, short-term disability policies cover the latter parts of pregnancy and the period after childbirth, which can help replace your income while staying home with your newborn.

Most short-term disability insurance policies are offered as an employer benefit, and in some cases that coverage may even be free.

One alternative to short-term disability insurance is building an emergency fund. A month emergency fund would provide the same protection as a month short-term disability insurance policy, with the added benefit of not having a monthly premium. Long-term disability insurance is where you typically find the most value. Long-term disability insurance picks up where your emergency fund or short-term disability insurance leaves off. This is a big potential benefit. That would go a long way toward keeping your family on the right track.

For that reason, the rest of this guide will focus primarily on long-term disability insurance. Long-term disability insurance is a complicated product with a lot of terms and conditions that vary policy to policy. Your monthly benefit is the amount of money your long-term disability insurance policy would pay you each month in the event of disability.

And there are a few key factors that go into deciding how big a benefit you need:. Believe it or not, there is no one way of defining disability. There are a lot of variations, but most policies fall into one of three main groups:. The elimination period is that amount of time you have to be disabled before you can start to collect your benefit. Typical elimination periods range from 60 to days, with longer elimination periods leading to a smaller premium.

Many long-term disability insurance policies pay out until age 65 or 67 to coincide with the standard Social Security retirement age. Other policies will only pay benefits for years. Longer benefit periods are more valuable, but also more expensive. Most long-term disability insurance policies will exclude certain types of conditions from coverage.

For example, mental health conditions are often not covered or are subject to a shorter benefit period. Sometimes the exclusions will only last for a period of time, such as the first two years of the policy being in place. Sometimes they last for the life of the policy. You should evaluate these exclusions in relation to your personal and family health history to understand how likely you might be to run into them.

Some long-term disability insurance policies are non-cancelable , which means that you are guaranteed a fixed premium until your coverage period ends. The insurance company cannot cancel your coverage and cannot raise your premium. A residual benefit feature means that you could receive partial benefits if you return to work at a reduced salary.

This feature can help you build your workload over time, making for an easier and smoother transition. Policies that come with a cost-of-living adjustment will increase your benefit each year based on the rate of inflation.

This is meant to ensure that you are able to pay for the same amount of goods and services each year, even as the cost of those things increase over time. Many long-term disability insurance policies guarantee you the right to increase your coverage in the future if your income increases, without any medical underwriting.

This is a valuable benefit because it eliminates the risk that a decline in health could prevent you from getting more coverage when you need it. Finally, you should make sure that the insurer is in good financial condition. Group disability insurance is often less expensive, and the premiums are typically tax-deductible. Many employers even offer a base level of long-term disability insurance coverage for free.

Your ability to get group coverage is in no way affected by your current health. Eligibility is solely dependent on your employment status with the company. This can be an especially big benefit if you have significant health issues that would make individual coverage either prohibitively expensive or impossible to get.

Group coverage is easy to get in place. In most cases, your group disability insurance premiums are tax-deductible, and the benefits you receive are taxed. So while group long-term disability insurance can be affordable on the front end, sometimes that comes at the cost of smaller benefits on the back end. In addition to the benefits being taxable, your employer may not offer enough coverage to meet your full need to begin with. You may need to get an additional policy if you want to be fully insured.

All of which means that you could find yourself without coverage somewhere down the line. This is crucial to making sure that you always have coverage when you need it. With an individual disability insurance policy, you have the opportunity to choose a broader definition of disability that increases your chances of receiving benefits.

This can be particularly helpful if you work in a highly specialized field where having an own occupation definition would be beneficial. Individual disability insurance premiums are not tax-deductible, but the upside is that any benefits you receive are tax-free. This ensures that you get as much money as possible when you really need it. You have a lot more control over all the policy features when you buy individual coverage.

You can often pick and choose whether you want residual benefits, cost-of-living adjustments, and the like, allowing you to customize your coverage to your specific needs. Individual disability insurance is typically more expensive than group coverage, particularly if you have pre-existing medical conditions or you work in a high-risk occupation.

Applying for individual long-term disability insurance includes a medical exam and a review of your medical history, after which the insurance company may ask more questions to get a better understanding of your current medical condition.

This can be time-consuming, can feel invasive, and in some cases can lead to a more expensive policy or even a denial of coverage altogether. The main reason is that it has a strict definition of disability , requiring you to be unable to work in any job for at least one year. It only pays out under the most extreme of circumstances.

All of which is to say that if you truly want financial protection from disability, getting some combination of group and individual coverage is likely the way to go. No one likes to think about the possibility of being sick or disabled, but protecting your income is a crucial part of building true financial security.

Disability insurance can be an effective way to get that protection. Matt Becker is a writer at MagnifyMoney.

You can email Matt here. Zina Kumok is a freelance writer specializing in personal finance. A trained journalist, she has covered everything from murder trials to the Final Four. She writes about being mindful with your money at ConsciousCoincs. About two years ago, Brian LeBlanc was fed up. The year-old policy analyst from Alberta, Canada, had struggled with his weight for years.

At the time, he weighed pounds and had trouble finding clothes that fit. He decided it was time to change his lifestyle for good. LeBlanc started running and cutting back on fast food and soft drinks. He ordered smaller portions at restaurants and avoided convenience-store foods. About a year into his weight-loss mission, his wife Erin, 31, joined him in his efforts. But the LeBlancs found the opposite to be true. Erin, who is a payroll specialist, also managed their household budget.

She began noticing a difference in how little money they were wasting on fast food and unused grocery items. Now, Brian says if they grab fast food, they choose a smaller portion. Brian likes to prep all his meals on Sunday so his lunches during the week are consistent and portion-controlled. They also buy only enough fresh produce to last them a couple of days to prevent wasting food. Two years after the start of their weight-loss journey, they took a look at their bank statements to see how their spending has changed.

They stopped meeting friends for drinks after work, and Erin took on a part-time job to bring in extra cash. When they needed new wardrobes because their old clothing no longer fit, they frequented thrift shops instead of the mall.

Now the Canadian couple is saving for a vacation home in Phoenix, Ariz. But they would always rally together in the end. Read below to see how a little weight loss can tip the scales when it comes to your finances. Still worried that an active lifestyle will require you to spend more money? Here are some tips on keeping costs low while you improve your lifestyle. Zina Kumok is a writer at MagnifyMoney.

You can email Zina here. Hannah Rounds Hannah Rounds is a freelance writer who covers consumer finance, investing, economics, health and fitness. Submitting claims When members incur medical expenses, they submit their bills to the ministry for approval. Negotiating bills One of the benefits of participating in a health care sharing ministry is that many ministries emphasize the importance of negotiating medical expenses.

Finding a doctor For the most part, ministry members are free to choose primary care doctors of their choice. Who can benefit the most from health care sharing ministries At their heart, health care sharing ministries are meant to help members who are facing unusually high or unexpected health care costs. She continues to use the ministry for her own health benefits. Synchrony Bank 13 Month CD.

Advertiser Disclosure Share this article: Obamacare costs and tax subsidies Part III: Choosing the right plan for your needs Part IV: How to enroll in Obamacare Part V: Where to get help enrolling Part VI: Frequently asked questions Part VII: The ultimate Obamacare glossary.

Anyone who has employer-sponsored health insurance and does not buy it will pay the individual mandate penalty except if coverage costs more than 8. Obamacare costs and tax subsidies. Families with children Families where one spouse has work coverage Families with expensive employer coverage Getting married in Getting divorced in Giving birth or adopting a child Turning 26 Losing employer coverage Changes in income Moving states or counties. If your children qualify for CHIP, you cannot purchase subsidized insurance for them through the exchange.

Families where one spouse has work coverage: Families with expensive employer coverage: Individuals getting married in Individuals getting divorced in Giving birth or adopting a child: Moving states or counties: Choosing the right Obamacare plan for your needs. What to consider before choosing a plan. Catastrophic Plans Cheapest premium, lowest coverage Catastrophic health plans: What to consider before choosing a plan Choosing a health plan can seem like a daunting task, but you can get all the help and information you need to make an informed decision.

Rather than comparing every plan, we recommend creating criteria around the following variables: Consider how the monthly premium will affect your budget. This does not mean you should choose the plan with the lowest premiums, but you should consider the price. People without chronic conditions who have adequate emergency savings may want to at least consider opting for an option with low monthly premiums.

Do you have the emergency fund or income you need to cover a small medical emergency? A broken arm, stitches or an unexpected infection can result in hundreds of dollars in medical costs. If possible, choose a plan with a deductible that you could comfortably cover out of your savings or income. Add the annual cost of your premiums and your out-of-pocket maximum to determine your maximum yearly cost.

In a worst-case scenario, this is the amount you will pay out of pocket. People with chronic conditions that require heavy out-of-pocket fees should try to limit their maximum yearly cost. A plan with a higher maximum yearly cost may represent a higher risk.

All insurance plans from the marketplace cover the same essential health benefits , but some offer more unique services such as medical management programs, vision and dental coverage. If you choose a high-deductible plan, you may want to opt for one lets you contribute to a tax-advantaged health savings account.

Any money you contribute to this account up to annual established limits reduces your taxable income, and will not be taxed upon withdrawal when it used for medical expenses. Residents in the following states should use their specific state exchange to look for health insurance: How to enroll in Obamacare. Filling out your application. Your Obamacare enrollment checklist: Names, birthdates and Social Security numbers for all members of the household Document numbers for anyone with legal immigration status Income information for all coverage-holders Information about employer-sponsored health plans Tax return from previous year to help predict income Student loan documents Alimony documents Retirement plan documents Health Savings Account documents.

Filling out your Obamacare application Family and household info Income and deductions Miscellaneous info Completing your Obamacare application.

Family and household info Start the application by filling out contact information and basic information about members of your household. Include all the following forms of income: Completing Obamacare enrollment After you complete the application, you can review and submit it. Where to get help enrolling In Obamacare coverage.

What happens if my plan was canceled? This steep penalty means that most people are better off purchasing some health insurance. These are a few of the most common exemptions: Must show evidence of membership Low income, no filing requirement: If you do not earn enough income to file taxes, then you are automatically exempt from paying a noncoverage penalty.

For , if you, your spouse, or your dependents cannot obtain employer coverage or a bronze plan for less than 8. However, if your individual coverage from an employer costs less than 9. You went without insurance for less than three months. No coverage is required if you live abroad for at least days. These include homelessness, eviction, foreclosure, unpaid medical bills, domestic violence and more. You must get a marketplace exemption.

Unable to obtain Medicaid: AmeriCorps coverage Members of qualified religious sects: Must be granted exemption through HealthCare. Update personal information on your application. Your income, household size, where you live and more will affect plan and subsidy eligibility.

Review your plan before you re-enroll. You should receive a notification in the mail if your plan has been changed or canceled.

Take the time to understand if the changes affect you. Compare plans that fit your needs. Consider enlisting free help from a health care navigator, a nonprofit or a broker to help you decide.

Choose the plan that best fits your needs and your budget. University students who are enrolled full time have multiple options for health insurance. These are a few common scenarios: Advance Premium Tax Credit.

Individual Mandate Tax Penalty. For the tax year, the individual mandate was calculated two ways: The amount you pay each month for your health insurance. Key dates to mark on your calendar. New Obamacare rules to watch out for. Key dates to mark on your calendar The open-enrollment period extends from Nov.

Plans purchased during open enrollment will become effective starting Jan. Act early If your insurer has exited the marketplace, you should have been notified by now, Karen Pollitz, senior fellow at the Kaiser Family Foundation, said at an October news briefing. If not, you can: Reach out to trained and registered agents or brokers using the Find Local Help tool.

A note from HealthCare. Some agents and brokers may sell only certain plans. Use this calculator from the Kaiser Family Foundation to get an estimate of your plan premiums, and check how much financial help you might qualify for based on your age, where you live and the prices in your area.

The calculator will soon be updated for coverage. Learn what you need to know from free, reliable resources. The Kaiser Family Foundation will hold web briefings for consumers in different states the week before enrollment starts.

Check out the dates here. New Obamacare rules to watch out for While the enrollment procedure remains largely unchanged this year, there are a few new rules experts say are worth your attention: People who missed payments last year may not receive coverage for Medicaid expansion Consumers in 31 states and Washington D.

For … 2. Premium increases and uncertainty Unable to successfully repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act ACA , the Trump administration has begun peeling back some elements of the legislation in recent weeks. Brynne Conroy Brynne Conroy is a personal finance writer based in Pittsburgh.

Why you need disability insurance Short-term disability insurance vs. Why You Need Disability Insurance. Short-term disability insurance vs.

How long is the elimination period? So with looking like an increasingly grim year for Democrats seeking re-election, the role of the most powerful leader of the free world has been reduced to that of an insurance salesman. Planned Parenthood announces plus events to promote Obamacare. In eight states, officials from the women's health and abortion provider will go to grocery stories and even indoor soccer fields to enroll people.

Emails raise questions about White House knowledge of Kathleen Sibelius fundraising. Emails obtained by the Washington Examiner through a Freedom of Information Act request raise new questions about how much the White House knew about Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius' fundraising for Obamacare and whether she solicited donations from entities she regulates. White House officials have said they did not sign off on calls made by Sebelius to solicit donations from private entities for Enroll America, an outside nonprofit with close White House ties that promotes enrollment in the health law's insurance exchanges.

Officials say they were only generally aware Sebelius would be seeking support from outside groups. Obama To Latino Families: First Lady To Obamacare Counselors: Stars discovering Obamacare is box office poison.

Obamacare has become so unpopular that entertainment industry stars are discovering that speaking out in favor of it comes at a cost. Take Will Ferrell for example. Will Ferrell is the latest celebrity enlisted to help pitch the Affordable Care Act to the so-called "young invincible" crowd that needs to sign up in large numbers for the law to function: Obamacare signs of desperation. After enduring gales of laughter in response to the Pajama Boy Gambit, the folks at Organizing for Action, aka my.

For Valentine's Day, the Obama administration decided to promote Obamacare in a manner less macho than its "Pajama Boy" campaign. First they seized on Thanksgiving, then Christmas dinner, and now Democrats and progressives want Valentine's Day to be about Obamacare. No headline candidate or big-money advocacy group, not even OFA, is running political ads touting the health law's successes.

Instead, they're trying to change the message. Obamacare got a boost from current and former National Football League players on Super Bowl Sunday after the White House sent suggested language for laudatory tweets to a representative of the league's players union. The NFL decided to forego an agreement with officials in charge of the Obamacare rollout. Martin Luther King Jr. King, please join us in this historic effort by helping your friends, neighbors, and loved ones get covered through the Marketplace," Sebelius said of the observance of Martin Luther King Jr.

Magic Johnson sold millions of Converse sneakers and hundreds of cans of Slice to young people during the s. There are no words to describe what happened Friday during a live event held by Covered California designed to increase interest among young people in the Affordable Care Act.

And it was fitness guru Richard Simmons who took us there. In December, reeling from surprising unpopularity among millennials, Obama returned to his trademark pied-piper "movement" rhetoric, likening healthcare policy to women's suffrage and the civil rights crusade. You mustn't get discouraged when you're out to change the world, Obama said, because "change" and leadership take time and hard work! It's a clever angle because young voters are easily seduced by two things which ordinarily would appear in tension: Magic Johnson stumps for Obamacare.

In the video, Johnson, who was diagnosed with HIV in the early s, says he likely would be dead right now if he didn't have quality health insurance. Johnson brought his medical problems upon himself. The President who stole Christmas. Today, while you're singing about Santa Claus, celebrating the end of the year and opening gifts with your family, you should know: You might be ignoring your presidential homework assignment.

Your celebration is probably wasting valuable time that could be spent shilling for his "signature legislation. Rather than simply letting you plan a Yuletide get together you hope will devolve into a nightmare of political arguments, the caring folks at Organizing for Action have put together a handy guide that will let you cut to the chase.

Follow their simple plan and you can rest assured that your day will be as miserable as possible. Obamacare outreach hits the clubs. Washington's new health insurance exchange dispatched a sign-up envoy to one of the city's gay clubs one recent night to get out the word about Obamacare. Out2Enroll video has men in holiday undies promoting subsidized healthcare. The Obama administration has teamed up with a campaign called Out2Enroll, the brainchild of the Sellers Dorsey Foundation, a c 3 that focuses on "improving the health of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community," according to their website.

Drag Queens Promote Obamacare. A group of drag queens in Louisiana has decided to use their cross-dressing talents to help promote Obamacare. Obamacare Panders To Gay Community. Obama encourages moms to 'tell stories in the grocery store' about Obamacare. In a meeting with "eight moms from around America," according to a White House pool report, President Obama encouraged the mothers to sing the praises of Obamacare while they're out shopping at grocery stores.

Obama, speaking to the moms in the Oval Office, acknowledged that there have been problems with the roll-out of his signature health legislation, but insisted that a solid P. Signing up for Obamacare should be New Year's resolution. The point of the ad is to promote Obamacare among young adults.

There are lots of revolting things in the Pajama Boy ad. After all, how can you top all at once a nerdy-looking child-man dressed in infantile pajamas while cradling a cup of hot chocolate with the smug assurance that he is running your life more than you his?

Obamacare's 'Pajama Boy' was accused of racism, anti-Semitism. Ethan Krupp, the little man who played "Pajama Boy" in a widely-mocked Obamacare ad, was accused in college of racism and anti-Semitism.

Krupp, an Organizing for Action OFA content writer who became the face of progressive America when he sipped cocoa and smirked while wearing a onesie pajama suit in a recent Obamacare ad, is also a failed comedy writer whose work was not appreciated in his own time.

Pajamacare boy and Organizing for Action employee. Obamacare 'pajamas boy' gets roundly mocked. The White House is trying to get families to spread the word about Obamacare coverage options ahead of the holidays. Relatives will gather around a common table, and key deadlines loom for enrollees who want to select a plan and be covered by the new year. Pajama Boy's place in Internet infamy was secured as soon as the insufferable man-child was tweeted out by Organizing for America.

He is the face of a web ad that is the latest effort by the Obama team to leverage the holidays for conversation about Obamacare. Talk about getting health insurance. The Obama Machine's Id. The Obama administration isn't doing very well with putting an empathetic face on its calamitous health-insurance law, is it?

First, we had Julia, the creepy, eyeless, vision-of-horror from Brave New World whose life was run from cradle to grave by the federal government. Then, we had Adriana, the painfully neutral and carefully ambi-racial stock-model-from-everywhere whose face became so synonymous with HealthCare.

And now, courtesy of Organizing for Action, we have Pajama Boy, a metrosexual hipster in a plaid onesie who wants you to spend your precious Christmas days talking to him about the president's vision for health insurance. OFA, and its various offshoots, are staffed by third-growth McGovernites who have come of age at the exact point that the radicalism of the s finally won out.

As David Burge of "Iowahawk" fame likes to joke, perhaps it wasn't "a good idea to turn the most successful country in the history of the world over to the grievance faculty at Harvard. And we have ended up with a parade of over-educated and under-experienced perpetual children who don't think twice before dressing a grown man up in footie pajamas. ObamaCare enrollment effort moves to shoe stores, restaurants. Health Links officials are spending this weekend going to shoe stores where the latest Nike Air Jordans are debuting and Denny's restaurants trying to convince so-called 'young invincibles' to sign up for DC's health exchange.

First lady to go on radio blitz for ObamaCare. Michelle Obama will sit for a trio of interviews with urban radio stations as part of a coordinated White House blitz intended to promote ObamaCare coverage among mothers and minorities.

The first lady will be interviewed Wednesday evening by Yolanda Adams, Al Sharpton, and Joe Madison, three of the nation's most popular African American talk radio hosts. Obama only speaks to black radio hosts. But if you criticize that trait, or even notice it, you're a racist. Obamacare, where the liberal dream crashes and burns. On Wednesday afternoon, a bunch of twentysomethings were summoned to the White House to hear an infomercial from Barack Obama himself.

He was pitching health insurance. But the salesman-in-chief can't close the deal. A healthcare navigator in unfriendly waters. Her task is made all the more challenging because she works in one of the Republican-led states openly hostile to the act. The GOP-controlled Legislature ordered state health officials not to cooperate with the federal program. A Roll of the Dice. President Obama is back selling his health-care law with the manic intensity of a late-night-infomercial pitchman who knows that if he doesn't move the product, it could be discontinued.

Here's Obama aiming his comments at young people this Wednesday: This is a big deal, to quote Joe Biden. If you're a bartender, have a happy hour. Obama compares health reform struggles to civil rights movement. In an address to a youth summit hosted at the White House, Obama urged young supporters to not get "discouraged" amid the health care law's rocky rollout and with polls showing declining support for the president's signature achievement. And the winner of the HHS video contest to promote Obamacare is On Tuesday afternoon, in yet another example of Barack Obama's inability to start a presentation much less a giant website on time, the president defended the disastrous health care law that is colloquially named for him and asked for help to "spread the word" about the law's purported benefits.

President leads the cheers for himself. Finally, after two months of horror, President Obama heard cheering when he discussed ObamaCare. But listen, the guy has had a hard time since Oct. The speech was promoted as part of an aggressive new effort to promote ObamaCare following the repairs far from completed made to the HealthCare.

If that was the intent, it was a colossal failure. Obama calls on bartenders to host happy hours for Obamacare. Pop-up Affordable Care Act enrollment center opens near S. The small storefront, provided by the city of Charleston free of charge, was mainly full of volunteers and paid navigators. A state-sponsored Christmas tree is okay as long as it is used to promote the leftist agenda.

White House 'sounds like a very cheap retailer' hawking Obamacare. Former Florida congressman Allen West mocked the news that the Obamacare website would be down for maintenance the night of its long-awaited Dec. It is the type of place that the White House expects to benefit most from ObamaCare. Yet the navigators I spoke with there earlier this month say interest has been sparse.

I've come to Florida to go door-to-door with the foot soldiers of Get Covered America, the boots-on-the-ground division of Enroll America, which bills itself as a "nonpartisan c 3 organization whose mission is to maximize the number of uninsured Americans who enroll in health coverage made available by the Affordable Care Act. Nearly every Enroll America staffer I speak to emphasizes it, often repeatedly.

President Barack Obama and outgoing New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg have both tried to nudge their way into America's Thanksgiving or Thanksgivukkah dinners, with talking points about Obamacare and gun control, respectively. Not only is introducing contentious political issues into a family holiday a recipe for unhappiness, but it also reflects the disturbing Orwellian ambitions of Obama's big-government liberalism.

White House returns to Obamacare sales mode. President Barack Obama will launch a coordinated campaign Tuesday by the White House, congressional Democrats and their outside allies to return attention to why the Affordable Care Act passed in the first place. After two months of intense coverage of the botched HealthCare. President Obama has begun a new 20 day effort to sell the Affordable Care Act.

And while his press conference on Tuesday was less defensive and more forward looking than his previous comments, it very much remains to be seen whether this new initiative will help sell the law or assuage very real concerns about its efficacy and viability.

Maybe the 10th time will be the charm for President Obama and his health care law. And he attacked the GOP for pushing for repeal. Why is President Obama trying to politicize the holidays? The administration knows many people will be unfamiliar with the etiquette of discussing national health care at Thanksgiving. So Organizing for Action, the president's political committee, has created a strategy sheet and suggested talking points.

It's especially important, the tip sheet says, to use special circumstances that might arise during a family celebration to press the case for health care. For example, one OFA tweet showed pictures of a young man wielding a big knife to carve a turkey. That was followed by a picture of the man with a bandage on his hand. Michelle Obama's idea of Thanksgiving table talk: So this is how first lady Michelle Obama imagines Americans should spend their Thanksgiving dinner: The Affordable Care Act's Hindenburg-like debut has been characterized a series of spectacular failures, the latest being an attempt by President Barack Obama's political arm, Organizing for America, to furnish their followers with effective pro-ACA talking points.

This army of true believers was instructed to bombard their unsuspecting kin with counterpoints to deflect the unceasing stream of bad ACA news screaming at them from the television set.

Be sure to use Thanksgiving dinner to convince relatives to buy a plan on the ObamaCare exchange. Believe it or not, these soulless robots have prepared an actual talking-points memo for the occasion replete with tips on how to plan your "talk. How not to market insurance. Provocative new pro-Obamacare ads urge single women to enroll in exchanges. From the folks who brought you the "brosurance" campaign that promotes the affordable care act comes a new line of ads aimed at reminding young women the new law will subsidize their birth control.

Why doesn't the guy have any pants on? New York's health exchange slogan is "Today's the Day. Oregon held a music contest, and California stresses the "peace of mind" that will come with insurance. The state and federal health insurance exchanges are using all manner of humor and happy talk to sell the Affordable Care Act's products.

But the one part of the new system that they are not quick to trumpet is the financial penalty that Americans will face if they fail to buy insurance. Celebrities who promoted ObamaCare now quiet in wake of website debacle. But there will be no celebrities flanking them on Capitol Hill, as the stars that helped launch the initiative are now being advised to walk away.

Judicial Watch told [the Washington Examiner] that the team was recruited by Maryland state officials to help it sell Obamacare, the new health care insurance program that has run into mammoth computer and bureaucratic troubles in its first three weeks. If there's one thing I don't like, it's an uninvited insurance salesman. President embraces role as 'salesman' for Obamacare. And that's okay," said Obama.

Obamacare Ads Push 'Brosurance'. President Obama's Obamacare "navigators" are proving to be a troublesome lot, with one navigator having an outstanding warrant for her arrest, and others having shady backgrounds. But some navigators in Colorado are doing their jobs by creating advertisements directed at college students. Oprah Winfrey gave 'unequivocal no' to selling Obamacare: Oprah Winfrey downright refused an invitation to the White House and the opportunity to join a host of celebrities to sell Obamacare over the summer, sources told the New York Post.

The Obamacare software mess. So nonprofit groups, insurers and some states are energetically promoting the exchanges. Enroll America, a group run by a former White House employee, is mining data to find the uninsured, then going door to door to urge them to buy coverage. The clip is just one example of the star-studded White House effort to deploy artists, actors and content creators to help sell the president's signature health care overhaul, the Affordable Care Act, especially to younger Americans.

Obamacare phones offered to health insurance buyers. In Tennessee, those shopping on the new health insurance co-ops could end up with more than just some health insurance. They might even walk away with a free smartphone. The Nashville Business Journal is reporting that Community Health Alliance, Tennessee's Obamacare health insurance co-op, is using the prospect of a free phone to encourage folks to enroll.

Obamacare ad agency asks high school marching bands to play pro-Obamacare songs. The point of asking high school bands to play the Obamacare anthem is to create more attention for Cover Oregon. It's not clear if the ad agency has asked the high school bands to play pro-Obamacare songs at football games or at other venues.

A primary reason the ads have generated national buzz is because they fail to provide any detail whatsoever concerning the Affordable Care Act. More about using schools as indoctrination centers. But there was one word Obama didn't mention once in his entire minute talk. And that word was "mandate. The Obamacare sales effort is this desperate. Apparently, people are not looking like they will sign up for Obamacare at anywhere near the levels necessary to sustain the illusion of public acceptance.

We know this not because any data has been released, but rather by the self-evident desperation of the sales effort. Just as a desperate drowning man flails his arms about, seeking to hold onto something that can save him, so has the Obamacare marketing team seized upon the cheapest of cheap tricks. The mysteries of Obamacare. They spelled out how people will get information.

They offered some favorable price comparisons to other states and some highs and lows for insurance plans. We appreciate their outreach effort. But the fact is that, five days before the launch of this massively ambitious redesign of national health care, the insurance policies to be offered in Illinois are still a mystery. Will your doctor and your hospital be included in the insurance networks?

Sebelius asks mayors, health care providers to help with Obamacare education. There are bound to be some glitches Oct. Obama looks to Hollywood to help promote his healthcare law. Farah, Funny or Die's president of production, was shocked by the challenges facing the White House. Creepy Obamacare ad hits college campuses and your nightmares. As the Republican dream of repealing President Barack Obama's health care law in Congress crumbles, the fight over the law's future shifts from Washington to college campuses, where the new challenge for Obamacare proponents lies in convincing young people to sign up for coverage mandated by the law.

This ad buy may grow, by the way, as government programs tend to do. Again, this is money that we don't have, to promote a law that most Americans don't want. New Obamacare ads targeting Oregon residents never mention health care reform or the system's new health care exchanges opening Oct. What's odd about the ads for Cover Oregon is the lack of information about Obamacare [ After concluding Florida citizens shouldn't be giving sensitive information to people who know little or nothing about insurance coverage, Deputy Health Secretary C.

Clinic employees can hand out brochures to consumers but only if requested. Florida bans Obamacare navigators from county health departments. The state of Florida issued a directive late Monday prohibiting the so-called Obamacare navigators from working on the premises of county health departments.

Deputy Health Secretary C. That's the only fathomable explanation for their nervous breakdown over a routine House inquiry. The Affordable Care Act is paying for "navigators," or non-government groups that received federal dollars in August to help people figure out and enroll for subsidies.

That such a program even exists explains a lot about the complexity of the new entitlement. Rubio accuses Sebelius of 'misappropriating public funds' with Obamacare ads. Marco Rubio is railing against what he calls the Obama administration's "blatant misuse of federal dollars to promote a fundamentally flawed law.

Bill Clinton sells Obamacare. With less than a month before the Obamacare exchanges open, the administration dispatched former president Bill Clinton to tout the unpopular law. Clinton should be appointed as Apologetics Czar. Marco Rubio, who calls the effort a "blatant misuse of federal dollars. Baltimore Ravens to aid Obamacare enrollment effort in Maryland. The team has signed onto efforts to market the health law to Marylanders, according to an announcement from Lt.

Anthony Brown and officials running the state's Obamacare insurance exchange, known as Maryland Health Connection. Working on a tight timeframe, Illinois is building an person army of temporary workers to help people sign up for health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act. With questionable legal authority, the Obama administration has already had to postpone two major aspects of the complex legislation, despite three full years of preparation time. You probably won't get to keep your existing plan if you like it.

Big business, Congress and White House folks got special delays and waivers. But we regular people still must follow every letter. Now hiring ObamaCare 'navigators'. But us regular people still must follow every letter. It isn't easy getting people to buy something they neither understand nor particularly want to own. An example being Obamacare. But the Department of Health and Human Services has a solution.

Then, spend the money to sell the program and employ "navigators" to assist people who find it complex bordering on incomprehensible. The Wall Street Journal reports this week that the Department of Health and Human Services has cut back on the number of training hours required for the Obamacare "navigators," federal workers who under the health care law are tasked with helping consumers purchase insurance through the state exchanges.

The Department of Health and Human Services is beginning a public effort to educate and train Americans about health insurance ahead of the implementation of parts of Obamacare this fall. Getting healthy young people involved is critical for its success, which is why the president made a strong push to that end last month.

Efforts to encourage that enrollment by Organizing For Action, the advocacy group that picked up the reins from Obama's campaign, have gotten a slow start.

That reference prompted the senators' curiosity. Groups go door-to-door to encourage enrollment in Obamacare. In recent weeks, President Obama's signature health-care law entered a new phase as hundreds of advocates began the arduous task of identifying the uninsured and coaxing them, one by one, to sign up for coverage.

For the law to succeed, groups such as Enroll America, whose officials include several veterans of Obama campaigns, will need to cajole millions of Americans, including many healthy ones, to enter the insurance market.

It could be a tough sell. As President Barack Obama's health care law moves from theory to reality in the coming months, its success may hinge on whether the best minds in advertising can reach one of the hardest-to-find parts of the population: Democrats seem to be making peace with the probable "train wreck" of ObamaCare's implementation.

The organization even took to twitter to advertise and promote its efforts. Celebrity sales force recruited to sell Obamacare to the young. Pitching expensive health insurance policies to young, relatively healthy adults who require little health care in order to subsidize the costs of relatively older people who require more care is a tough sell.

So it should come as little surprise that the Obama administration is recruiting a force of celebrity pitchpersons to make the sale to the critical mass of young Americans needed to make the economics of Obamacare's new health insurance exchanges work. Obama meets with celebs who want to promote Obamacare.

With open enrollment in Obamacare's exchanges set to start in fewer than three months, the law's supporters are attempting to change the subject from Obamacare's many delays and glitches. Instead, they're mounting a campaign to sell the unpopular measure to the public.

You may have already noticed that "get the word out" is a phrase that means, "sign up everyone in the lower class for lifetime dependence on the government. Obamacare Funds to Sponsor Bourbon Festivals. One day after The Washington Post reported that federal taxpayer dollars could be used to promote Obamacare through porta-potties, the same outlet posted this e-mail from a Kentucky state official on how the Commonwealth plans to use federal funds to promote Obamacare.

Porta-john ads are gonna get this thing right back on track. Well, the nanny state wants to do everything else for us, why shouldn't it write the jokes for us, too? Obamacare will be advertised on porta-potties. In an attempt to reach young adults without insurance, that's just one of the ideas being tossed around by supporters.

And, yes, you're paying for all of this. There's been a recent flurry of activities attempting to boost the Affordable Care Act. In mid-June, for example, President Obama's "Organizing for Action" group reportedly spent seven figures on TV ads in California, Florida and Texas claiming, "Americans are already seeing the benefits" of health-care reform.

Also in June, the administration and an allied nonprofit, Enroll America, described how hundreds of thousands of community organizers will sign up seven million uninsured people for health coverage, once registration for subsidized insurance starts Oct. Even Democrats were taken aback. And Then a Miracle Happens. Pay no attention to the absurdity of using Hollywood and sports celebrities, none of whom will ever be caught dead in an ObamaCare clinic, to sell young, healthy people on the idea that it's cool to spend money that they don't have because they can't find jobs in Obama's economy on inflated health insurance premiums to subsidize their older, sicker compatriots.

Kathleen Sebelius isn't having a stellar week in terms of getting groups on board to promote Obamacare. Yes, she had something of a win with librarians earlier, but her more recent efforts seem to be falling on deaf ears. One place where she's pushing to find public opinion movers is in major league sports, looking for these highly visible organizations to begin "promoting the health law's opportunities" as she did with the librarians.

NFL says no to promoting ObamaCare; teachers, librarians take up the slack. But there are still plans to draft other sports, perhaps including soccer leagues, into the effort.

And if sports teams won't play ball, the Administration and its allies have other channels for reaching young people. Libraries enlisted to deliver Obamacare information. The White House is turning to the network of public libraries to deliver Obamacare information and advice to the nation.

As it begins promoting the program that will require all Americans to have health insurance or pay a fine starting next year, the administration is dealing with the biggest hurdle in its effort: Where Americans go to get information on the new program. Enter public libraries, already the go-to site for many Americans looking for tax forms every April. The story of LA teachers indoctrinating kids on ObamaCare goes national.

Millions of people are having second or third thoughts as they get new health insurance bills with steeply hiked rates, as employers cut work hours to save on insurance coverage or as companies drop the coverage plans and leave workers to go on the government's version. In desperation, the Obama administration is seeking any way it can to promote ObamaCare to the uninformed.

Newest foot soldiers for ObamaCare: Growing up, I had an aunt who became a librarian because she dreamed of one day helping liberals push a ruinous boondoggle on a broke America. Deputizing the postal service, another institution that's being laid to waste by technology, to start selling policies door to door. NFL says it has no plans to help promote Obamacare.

Under pressure to promote President Obama's health care law, the administration is in talks with the National Football League to form a marketing partnership during the upcoming season. It would be a big mistake for any sports league to inject itself into the contentious political battle over Obamacare, but I'd like to just focus on the NFL for now.

California schools are turning into government indoctrination centers. So, in a desperate attempt "the Obama administration created a marketing campaign for Obamacare that made it cool and hip" by "reaching out to the NFL, the NBA and Hollywood for help, and counting down the days to Oct. The goal is to train millions of student messengers statewide to sell the idea of government-subsidized health insurance to parents and relatives at home and to get more people enrolled in ObamaCare.

The district listed as a primary outcome for its project, "Teens trained to be messengers to family members. More about schools being used as indoctrination centers. White House recruiting Hollywood stars for ObamaCare rollout. The White House is working to recruit Hollywood celebrities to help promote ObamaCare, a top celebrity political adviser told The Hill.

Trevor Neilson, a veteran of the Clinton White House, said he's in talks with the Obama administration and that his clients are "looking at ways to be involved. Sebelius said the football league has been "very actively and enthusiastically engaged" in discussions about a partnership to encourage people to enroll in newly available insurance plans. Why wasn't I told about this sooner? Sure, if a football player comes to my door selling Obamacare, of course I'll drop all my opposition!

Obamacare sales pitch to flood schools, churches, cell phones, computers. Here comes the great Obamacare sales pitch. Enroll America, a group dedicated to helping the administration sell the nation on Obamacare, is planning to make their pitch of encouraging Americans to sign up in schools, churches, and even personal cellular phones. The nonprofit group with ties to the president's team is poised to become the president's unofficial Obamacare marketing team, announcing this week that it will put its message in every corner of American life.

If Obamacare is so wonderful, why is it necessary to enlist celebrities to sell it? The Obama administration has reportedly contacted the National Basketball Association NBA about a role in promoting healthcare reform around the country. Efforts to sell ObamaCare are ramping up ahead of October, when people can begin signing up for the new insurance exchanges, and January, when the exchange coverage kicks in.

Many have speculated that the enrollment campaigns would benefit from a celebrity endorsement or partnership with a major sports league. Obama admin puts the heat on the NBA to help sell Obamacare. Selling of Obamacare underway.

The Obama administration is reaching out to Democrats and Republicans in Congress as it gears up to try to sell Obamacare to the public this summer. For the Democrats, the meetings are part of a substantial messaging effort that will get under way to encourage people to sign up for health coverage through the new Obamacare exchanges starting on Oct.

They've involved high-level officials and lawmakers. Rely on the facts, not the politics, of the health law. State senators hold public meetings on proposal to nullify Obamacare in S. A group of state senators will host three public meetings this week, including one in North Charleston, on proposed legislation that would nullify Obamacare in South Carolina. As I and others have pointed out before, any state that creates an ObamaCare insurance exchange is getting suckered into footing the bill for a federal program.

The latest state to reject this scam is New Jersey, whose governor just vetoed a state-run exchange proposed by his legislature. What do they know that the administration isn't telling the rest of us? So far, not one part of ObamaCare has worked as planned.

If ObamaCare is such a great deal Maybe they know a bad deal when they see it. Partisan politics can't explain all of the reluctance, especially not with the Democratic governors who are balking at the plan. The unfunded liabilities in Medicaid expansion alone in the outer years have to be daunting, especially for states who already can't cover their current obligations.

Only 15 States Establish Obamacare Exchanges. State officials are very smart not to set up their own exchanges since any costs beyond what the Feds offer to help pay is on their taxpayers' dimes. Won't Set Up Health Exchange. Pennsylvania will not set up its own health care exchange under the federal Affordable Care Act, at least not for now, Gov. Another State to Consider Obamacare Nullification. Since the Supreme Court rendered its opinion on the constitutionality of a mandatory federal health care system last summer, many Americans consider the matter settled.

But others recognize that despite the pronouncement of five robed federal employees, the Constitution still does not delegate Congress the power to create and run a health care system for all plus million Americans. Don't Make an Exchange. The Affordable Care Act ACA was a milestone in many ways, marking previously uncharted territory in federal arrogance and overreach. As health-insurance policy goes, it promises to prove catastrophic, but its constitutional implications are more worrisome still in that it is among the most insidious attempts yet to reduce the states to mere administrative subdivisions of the federal government.

Led by Oklahoma, many states have pushed back by declining to comply with the law's demand that states create health-insurance exchanges. With the election over and no chance President Obama will sign legislation repealing the law, implementation is proceeding.

But the ObamaCare Resistance Movement has begun. Many states are wisely signaling that they aren't interested in doing the Obama administration's bidding on Obamacare.

ObamaCare's subsidized insurance exchanges are supposed to be up and running in little more than a year, putting a key piece of the federal health care law into action. But it's unclear that will happen, especially with a growing number of states saying they don't want the cost and regulatory headaches. A key committee in the Michigan legislature has voted down a proposal to create one of ObamaCare's health insurance "exchanges.

Liberals wanted government to re-engineer the entire health-care system and rammed the Affordable Care Act through on a party-line vote, not stopping to wonder whether it would work. Now that implementation is proving to be harder than advertised, they're blaming the states for not making their jobs easier. Could Oklahoma unravel Obamacare? With the judicial and political options for voiding Obamacare now apparently off the table, the final hope to defeat the DMV-ization of the best medical system on the planet may be the vast law's inherent contradictions.

Hastily and sloppily put together, there are loopholes in the law that may be big enough to drive all of Oklahoma through. But only if Oklahoma's elected officials continue to exercise their options under the law not to implement certain policies. The States Resist Obamacare. One of the few bright spots in the Supreme Court's ruling on Obamacare was its decision striking down the Obama administration's attempt to blackmail states into going along with a massive and costly expansion of Medicaid.

States are Resisting Obamacare. Georgia Legislature, Governor Deal: LePage Issues Letter to Feds: No Obamacare Exchanges for Maine. LePage, in a letter to U. HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, noted that the State of Maine has repeatedly stated that the law has severe legal problems, is bad policy, and overreaches into the lives and pocketbooks of fellow Americans.

Montana Voters Nullify Obamacare Mandates. The prohibition does have some restrictions, but the good thing about this [is] these rules are being set by the state of Montana, not the the Federal Government. Carts, Horses, and Secession. Asking the White House to comment on the secession of one or more states won't move the President, Congress, the courts, or the military.

But it is symbolic of the exhaustion many people feel as they watch the crony political class squander their treasure and their liberty. Rick Perry officially notified the federal government on Thursday that the state will not set up an exchange to help people buy health insurance. Republican governors decide against setting up ObamaCare insurance markets.

Several Republican governors, in what could be their last symbolic stand against ObamaCare, announced Friday that they will not set up a state-based marketplace for selling health insurance. The governors of Wisconsin and Ohio joined Texas Gov. Rick Perry and others in confirming that they will not establish so-called "health insurance exchanges," which are set to launch in January GOP governors brace for fights over Obamacare, drilling.

Will multiple states' non-cooperation be too much for ObamaCare? The answer, of course, is an emphatic yes , since by its very nature, ObamaCare is too much for ObamaCare, but individual states' freedom to opt out of designing their own state-specific health insurance exchanges is turning out to be yet another flaw in the oh-so-masterful plan.

This argument is absolutely wrong. Allowing your states to be deputized as instruments of federal policy is just as bad as bowing to federal commandeering of state agencies, which is unconstitutional.

Talking Points Memo is shocked, shocked! The Democrats' Unforced Errors. They have made key unforced strategic errors in the past decade which have caused them to lose half of their legislative seats and governor's mansions across the states, significant chunks of their agenda and of course the Grand Prize of them all, Pennsylvania Avenue. One major unforced strategic error was forcing ObamaCare down the public's unwilling throats at midnight on Christmas Eve before passing their beloved Comprehensive Immigration Reform, or at least doing something about the ailing economy.

A "monkey trap" is sprung when a victim is so reluctant to surrender a temporary gain it fixes him in place allowing his enemies to inflict long term destruction. Its first victim was the Democratic Party which having hailed it as a step on the road to a single payer health care system, were so blinded to its financial and practical faults that they let it drag them to oblivion in the midterm and presidential elections rather than letting it go.

But its lethal career may not be over. Ted Cruz R-Texas pulled out a surprise map during his town hall debate with Sen. What's in a Name? Headline writers love it and President Barack Obama decided to embrace it when his Republican enemies coined the term.

But the memorable handle may have done more harm than good for Obama's signature policy, now in the process of being repealed before he even leaves office. It's provided an easy scapegoat for people suffering problems in a health care system that was a mess long before the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act passed Congress in without a single Republican vote. Democrats are addicted to Obamacare. It has performed poorly, alienated far more people than it has aided, and been a political disaster.

Yet Democrats can't shake it. In , it was the issue that delivered the House to Republicans. In , it gave them the Senate. In , it was one of the keys to Donald Trump's capture of the White House.

After all this, a rational party would want to scrap Obamacare or modify it significantly. Particularly thanks to Obamacare, which has never been popular, the Democrats lost the House in In , they lost the Senate. In , Democrats held 60 seats in the Senate. Obamacare premium hikes could push swing state voters to Donald Trump, Republicans. Six years after passage, Obamacare is still cropping up on the campaign trail, as Mr.

Obama turns to Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton to build on his signature achievement in lieu of Mr. Trump, who's vowed to tear it down. A look at what happened in Arizona shows the cascading effects of problems with the design and implementation of the ACA, combined with early missteps by insurers. Some priced plans aggressively, angling for market share and betting special programs built into the law would protect them from losses. Those protections didn't work as expected.

Enrollees' health-care expenses repeatedly overshot the projections of nearly all Arizona's insurers. ObamaCare hikes leave Dems exposed. Democrats are increasingly acknowledging that the Affordable Care Act has an affordability problem. Former President Bill Clinton said recently that people who are ineligible to get subsidies to buy ObamaCare insurance are "getting killed.

Mark Dayton said this month that "the reality is the Affordable Care Act is no longer affordable to increasing numbers of people. Host Stephanie Ruhle was speaking with Hunt, who is covering Hillary Clinton's campaign, about the recent reports on how health care premiums under Obamacare are expected to skyrocket next year. With premiums set to go up double digits, this has got to be a problem for the Clinton campaign. First, Ohio has been hit hard by Obamacare's many failures.

This year Ohio's Obamacare co-op collapsed, leaving 22, Ohioans without their health insurance. Aetna also announced that in they were leaving the state's Obamacare exchange.

Those awful developments make's Strickland's statements in support of Obamacare extremely tone deaf: More than , people in North Carolina are set to lose their healthcare plans under Obamacare due to two of the state's three insurers dropping out of the exchange. Hillary Clinton goes silent on Obamacare.

It is the Democratic Party's most important legislative accomplishment in two generations. It is something Hillary Clinton, although she left the Senate by the time ACA became law in , worked for all her adult life.

So why doesn't Clinton at least mention this great achievement as she campaigns for president? A look at transcripts of Clinton stump speeches since she kicked off the general election campaign on Labor Day finds the Democratic candidate almost never talks about Obamacare. She doesn't promise to expand it. She doesn't promise to protect it. She doesn't extol its benefits. When Hillary Clinton held a seemingly insurmountable lead in most national and state polls, she didn't need to worry about the health insurance sticker shock that much of the electorate is about to experience.

Her edge was large enough to ensure victory even if she lost a couple of points due to voter anger over skyrocketing premiums caused by Obamacare. Those halcyon days are gone. Her national lead has all but evaporated, and she is behind Donald Trump or clinging to tenuous leads in crucial swing states whose voters will learn of huge rate hikes one week before Election Day.

It's time to kill the ObamaCare penalty. President Obama promised his law would provide an array of affordable health plans. In , consumers will get neither choice nor affordability.

And insurance premiums are skyrocketing across the country. Consumers will be clobbered starting Nov. They'll want to know what Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton intend to do about it. How to Escape Obamacare. When open enrollment starts Nov. People who earn too much to qualify for a subsidy will be forced to pay as much as a fifth of their income for health insurance. And they'll get less choice of doctors and hospitals and less prescription drug coverage.

Annual enrollment begins eight days before voters go to the polls. Donald Trump is vowing to repeal Obamacare. In the three-plus years since the ObamaCare exchanges opened, the law is teetering on the edge of the abyss. Now a Kaiser Family Foundation survey released late last week shows that the public is far from satisfied with what Obama claimed was the be-all and end-all of reform. Understanding the politics of the president's health care law has never been complicated.

It was barely passed through Congress despite huge Democratic majorities in , became the driving force behind the GOP's takeover of the House in , and again was the leading issue Republicans campaigned on to retake the Senate in Nearly 15, advertisements aired about Obamacare in the last week of last year's midterms, and 94 percent of the messaging was negative.

One week later, Republicans won nine Senate seats and netted their largest House majority since the s. For Republicans, it has been the political gift that keeps on giving. As of this month, Obamacare has undergone not fewer than 50 substantial changes since its enactment in March One wonders what is worse: Such wholesale changes on the fly, by the law's own architects, demonstrate the Affordable Care Act's resounding failure better than any critic ever could.

Many of those responsible have now admitted the error of their ways, resigned, or inadvertently revealed the dishonest manner of its passage. Political proponents such as former Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana have also suffered swift dismissals from their constituents.

Dems run away from Obamacare penalty they imposed. The Democrats who wrote and passed the Affordable Care Act were sure of two things: The law had to include a mandate requiring every American to purchase health insurance, and it had to have an enforcement mechanism to make the mandate work. Enforcement has always been at the heart of Obamacare. Now, though, enforcement time has come, and some Democrats are shying away from the coercive measures they themselves wrote into law. If ObamaCare is so great, why do Democrats repeatedly try to hide its more unpleasant features?

The latest example is their desperate effort to grant still more exemptions to the law's individual mandate. Obamacare vote to test Democrats' resolve under Republican majority. Sorry, but these Democrats are 5 years late on Obamacare. We also learned that there are lots of Democrats having second thoughts about Obamacare.

Record 58 percent would repeal ObamaCare. Few American voters feel their family is better off under ObamaCare, and a record number would repeal the law if they could. In addition, if comments by one of the health care law's authors about lying to "stupid" Americans are true, over half of voters think President Obama or other administration officials are responsible for that deception.

Republicans must perform radical surgery. GOP Senate candidates campaigning against the health-care law captured at least seven seats, giving their party control of the Senate.

These new senators better live up to their pledges and put bills on the president's desk to repeal the worst parts of ObamaCare. Don't throw us mere crumbs, such as repeal of the medical-device tax. Every new GOP senator who won in last night's election campaigned on repealing Obamacare. Senators Cory Gardner R-Colo. The GOP will take control of the Senate with fresh momentum to dismantle the president's signature healthcare law.

All 10 newly elected Republican senators have campaigned on the promise to repeal and replace ObamaCare, and five have already voted against the health law while serving in the House. McConnell unveils plan to dismantle ObamaCare. McConnell said the GOP will tackle unpopular aspects of the law such as the individual mandate, the medical device tax and the hour workweek requiring employers to provide insurance. Don't care for Obamacare. Nearly half of voters on Tuesday said Obamacare went too far, according to exit polls.

Forty-seven percent of those who cast ballots in the midterms said the health care law, which opened for enrollment a year ago, went too far. Just as critics had predicted, ObamaCare has again proved itself a job-killer.

Especially for Democratic senators. Even before the full results were in last night, it was clear ObamaCare had again retired more of those whose votes brought us ObamaCare. That's no surprise, given how most Democrats did everything they could to avoid even uttering the word "ObamaCare" during their campaigns. What would happen if you ignored multiple requests from your employer to stop wasting time on your pet project and instead concentrate on a higher priority task?

You would be fired, of course. There are six U. Senators up for reelection tomorrow who richly deserve to lose their jobs for that very offense. With the voices of protest reverberating in their ears, these cynical pols voted to foist Obamacare on an unwilling electorate.

Democrats will pay the price for Obama in November. Americans can't help but notice that Obama has consistently placed his ideology and political interests above the national interests and routinely resorted to partisan sniping and scapegoating instead of accepting responsibility and accountability for his decisions and considering a change of course.

More disturbingly, voters must notice that Obama's words are increasingly unreliable and that he expects them to believe his version of reality over the reality itself.

His response to a question from a steel plant manager at a town hall meeting last week in Indiana concerning rising healthcare costs was particularly revealing. This midterm election is all about my policies. A study released a few days ago found that barely more than a third of the Democrats running for Congress this year have expressed support for ObamaCare. The GOP made more noise yesterday about the one-year anniversary of the federal O-Care exchange opening for business than the White House did.

Voter Intensity Strongly Against Obamacare. A new poll from Public Opinion Strategies, commissioned by Independent Women's Voice, finds that people who care about the issue of Obamacare really don't like Obamacare.

On the flip side, people who like Obamacare really don't care about it very much. That's a bad combination for pro-Obamacare candidates. With insurance rates set to spike in Alaska, a new ad faults Senator Mark Begich, one of the most vulnerable Democrats in the country, for supporting Obamacare and missing votes.

The law didn't go into effect in time to hurt the president's re-election bid in , but it is making life extremely difficult for the president's party in Democrat Harkin says Hillary Clinton's 'fingerprints are all over' Obamacare.

I'm not sure if Tom Harkin did this on purpose, but he might have single-handedly disarmed Hillary's presidential run by tying her intimately to the passing of Obamacare. Dems struggle to get out from under ObamaCare in Senate races. Lately, Democrats in tough Senate races have been slamming President Obama for breaking his pledge that everyone could keep their health plans and doctors "no matter what.

Look, I didn't realize people would lose their health plans 'til a few months ago.