Enroll by March 15 for April 1 coverage

Saturday, March 15, 2014, is the last day for North Dakotans to enroll in an individual or family health insurance plan to have coverage beginning on April 1, 2014. This includes plans available on the North Dakota Health Insurance Marketplace.

You can get started at www.BCBSND.com/shop, or by calling 1-800-280-BLUE (2583) to talk with a Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota representative. You have until March 31, 2014 to apply for coverage on or off the Marketplace, but if you purchase after March 15, your coverage won’t start until May 1 or later.

You only need to enroll in coverage through the Marketplace if you wish to apply for a federal tax credit to help pay for your health insurance. Not sure if you are eligible for the tax credit? Use our handy tax credit calculator. If you do not qualify for a tax credit, you can enroll in a BCBSND health insurance plan at www.BCBSND.com/shop or by calling 800-280-BLUE (2583).

This video offers some more info on how health reform impacts your health insurance options.

Does this deadline affect you?
This deadline only applies to those who buy their own health insurance (not through an employer) and want to have their new insurance plan begin coverage on April 1, 2014. You will need to apply for  coverage by the March 31, 2014, deadline, or you will need to wait until November 15, 2014, for the next open enrollment period.* New BCBSND plans that are offered both on the North Dakota Marketplace and off the Marketplace at BCBSND.com meet all the requirements of the Affordable Care Act.

If you have existing BCBSND coverage through your employer, talk to your employer about how health care reform affects your health insurance, or call BCBSND Member Services at the number on the back of your BCBSND member ID card. Call one of our Health Benefits Consultants at 800-280-BLUE (2583) if you have any questions about the tax credit, need help finding a BCBSND health insurance plan that fits your needs or have questions about how health care reform will affect you.

Let us know if you have any questions.

* You may be able to change your coverage outside the open enrollment period if you have a qualifying life event, which is a change in your life that can make you eligible for a special enrollment period to enroll in health coverage. Examples of qualifying life events include moving to a new state, certain changes in your income and changes in your family size (like getting married, divorced or having a baby).

Ryan Schuster is an editor in the Communications department at Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota.

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