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Fact Sheet
Affordable Care Act, Learn

What is the new Health Insurance Marketplace?

The new health care law creates a new way to buy insurance: the Health Insurance Marketplace. Individuals and families can shop for, purchase, and enroll in health insurance that meets their budget all in one competitive marketplace. The Marketplace will be online and allow you to easily compare the price, benefits, and out-of-pocket costs between plans so you can choose a plan that works for you.

Am I eligible to participate in the Marketplace?

Citizens and lawfully present individuals living in the U.S. can participate. Undocumented immigrants are not eligible to purchase insurance plans sold in the Marketplace. Even if you aren’t a citizen, you can still purchase coverage in the Marketplace for your children or other family members who do qualify. More than one in ten Asian American families and one in eight Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander families will be eligible to participate in the Marketplace.

Will I be able to afford these new insurance plans?

You could get a break on costs and might even be eligible for subsidies or new tax credits that you can use right away to help fit health insurance into your budget. If you make between $15,417 and $43,560 as an individual, or $25,571 and $74,120 for a family of three, you will qualify for these new options that will lower your monthly costs.
Thanks to the new health care law, these new coverage options will provide good value for your money. All the new plans in the Marketplace will cover a core set of essential health benefits including preventive care and prescription drug coverage. Insurance companies won’t be able to deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions or chronic illnesses like cancer or diabetes.

Will buying and enrolling in coverage in the new Marketplace be safe?

Sensitive information like your social security number or tax identification number must be provided only if you are applying for your own health insurance coverage. If you are applying for insurance for your spouse or child, you only need to provide this information for those parties and not for yourself.
It’s important to remember that when the application asks about the applicant’s (that’s the person who is requesting insurance) immigration status, that information will only be used to determine if they are eligible to enroll. Providing information about one’s immigration status will not be used for immigration enforcement or other purposes.

How can I enroll in the new Marketplace?

Open enrollment begins on October 1, 2013. Because your state’s Marketplace will be accessible online through www.healthcare.gov, you can shop and sign-up for your insurance plan at your convenience. The Marketplace’s streamlined application process ensures a no “wrong door” system so even if you apply for private insurance through the Marketplace, you will be seamlessly redirected to Medicaid if you are eligible. For those with limited access to on-line services, traditional paper applications are also available as are toll-free helplines and in-person application assistance.