Health Care Insurance Options When Losing Your Job-Based Coverage Under the Affordable Care Act Read the Article Open Share Drawer Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Written by Magaly Olivero Published Dec 19, 2014 1 min read In the past, people who lost their job-based health insurance had little choice but to continue coverage at their own expense under COBRA. But with passage of the Affordable Care Act, the loss of employer-based coverage is now considered a “qualifying life event.” That means you can buy health insurance without waiting for the national open enrollment period – a move that could save you thousands of dollars. COBRA is a federal law allowing employees who lose their job-based coverage to keep their plan for up to 18 months. Enrollees must pay both the employee and employer portion of their premiums, so this option can be costly. Now the good news: One study found that people eligible for COBRA who buy insurance on their own instead may save up to $2,750 a year for individual coverage or $8,674 a year for family coverage. Given the potential for savings, you may want to consider these factors if you become eligible for COBRA: If costs aren’t a concern, you may prefer to keep your plan by enrolling in COBRA. Compare coverage options beyond COBRA. Check out plans sold in the private marketplace as well as in the Health Insurance Marketplace that offers discounted coverage depending on your income and family size. Keep track of deadlines. You have 60 days after losing job-based coverage to enroll in COBRA. Otherwise, you must wait until the next open enrollment period and risk getting a tax penalty if you are uninsured for more than two months. If you have more questions about enrolling in health insurance and how the Affordable Care Act impacts you and your finances TurboTax has you covered. You can go to TurboTax Health to get your questions answered. Previous Post 4 Tax Credits to Boost Your Tax Refund [Video] Next Post 6 Top Affordable Care Act Exemptions Written by Magaly Olivero Magaly Olivero is an award-winning writer and has written for many national and regional media outlets, as well as corporate and nonprofit clients in the healthcare, tax and education industries. Her publishing credits include U.S. News and World Report, Newsweek, The New York Times, Working Woman, Better Homes and Gardens and the Connecticut Health Investigative Team. Magaly is a recipient of a National Journalism Fellowship from the University of California Annenberg School of Communication and a Health Coverage Fellowship from the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation. More from Magaly Olivero One response to “Insurance Options When Losing Your Job-Based Coverage Under the Affordable Care Act” This Blog is not totally true, I was in this situation and it all depends on your total income, if you can live just on unemployment without any additional income this might work you would get a discounted rate from AHC. But usually Cobra has better coverage if your employer had a good plan and the cost would be about the same if you compare it to the Affordable Health Care options with the same coverage. The AHC policies that they offer are not cheap and have little good coverage unless you qualify for subsidies, I pay $720 a month and AHC policies do not cover anything until i meet my deductible of $6600. Reply Leave a ReplyCancel reply Browse Related Articles Health Care How to Purchase Health Insurance in the Health Insuranc… Health Care Five Facts the Insured Should Know About Health Care Re… Uncategorized 5 Life Events that Qualify You for Special Enrollment P… Health Care What Life Events Qualify for a Special Enrollment Perio… Health Care White House Delays Affordable Care Act Employer Mandate… Health Care What Does My New Health Insurance Mean for My Taxes? Health Care Health Care Reform Checklist Health Care In Sickness and in Health: Your Health Insurance Option… Health Care Same-Sex Couples and The Affordable Care Act: What Do … Tax Reform How Does the New Tax Law Affect My Health Insurance?