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Old 11-01-2013, 03:45 PM   #481
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My umpteenth attempt trigger a notice that submissions are rejected, there is a error msg but its not highlighted and easy to miss. So I call special 800 number to verify ID over the phone, you need some other number (not application ID) which I didn't have so I end up call the other 800 number who had all sorts of trouble, end result, I have to snail mail my proof of id and HOPE that it will get through the system, estimate 2 weeks. What a @#$# pile of $#%#$.
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Old 11-01-2013, 03:55 PM   #482
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My umpteenth attempt trigger a notice that submissions are rejected, there is a error msg but its not highlighted and easy to miss. So I call special 800 number to verify ID over the phone, you need some other number (not application ID) which I didn't have so I end up call the other 800 number who had all sorts of trouble, end result, I have to snail mail my proof of id and HOPE that it will get through the system, estimate 2 weeks. What a @#$# pile of $#%#$.
Yeah, I had to mail a copy of ID to a place in Kentucky. This is one of those deals where you need to take deep breathes.
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CoveredCA Update #2
Old 11-01-2013, 04:19 PM   #483
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CoveredCA Update #2

Yesterday I was able to upload one document but got an error message for the 2nd. I tried the chat feature, and a few minutes after getting into the chat queue, I got someone who asked what I needed. His solution was to make hard copies to send into the P.O. Box he gave me. For some reason, the mailing address is not posted online any place I could see.

This morning, I thought, "I'm trying again," so I went in, found yesterday's document still there and uploaded the other two they wanted. They also required me to put in some notes. I did, hit submit, and came back later today to see how stable things were.

It's all still there.

We still have no idea whether our doctors or local hospital are in the network, but I just learned they aren't even in network for us now -- which was a big surprise to us.
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Old 11-01-2013, 05:12 PM   #484
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Originally Posted by Accidental Retiree View Post
Yesterday I was able to upload one document but got an error message for the 2nd. I tried the chat feature, and a few minutes after getting into the chat queue, I got someone who asked what I needed. His solution was to make hard copies to send into the P.O. Box he gave me. For some reason, the mailing address is not posted online any place I could see.

This morning, I thought, "I'm trying again," so I went in, found yesterday's document still there and uploaded the other two they wanted. They also required me to put in some notes. I did, hit submit, and came back later today to see how stable things were.

It's all still there.

You are lucky! My attempt to upload two documents did not even show me an upload button to click on! But they are no longer staring at me. I wonder what happened to them or the visualization of the links?
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Old 11-01-2013, 07:55 PM   #485
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I did the CoveredCA.com signup today. No big surprises. Some notes:

1. FireFox 24 use produces a failure when starting account creation. Safari (Mac OSX 10.9) had no problem.

2. The Oracle database failed once on starting the Income section. Using the 'Back' button on the browser to select the starting page let me continue. No data was lost, and re-entering the Income section worked fine.

3. Some pages are still a bit rough around the edges. Some areas prompt for the SSN to be entered as NNN-NN-NNNN. They actually want and accept only NNNNNNNNN. Phone number fields don't want parenthesis or dashes, just numbers.

I did note that some text has been cleaned up, around such things as "Do you have current insurance coverage?" making it clear that they are talking about January 2014 coverage. The onscreen Back button works now! (OOOOOOOOooohhhhh!)

I got all the way through to the point where they want documents for income verification. The Upload option appears to be functional, and I was able to upload what they asked for.

Waiting is...
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Old 11-04-2013, 03:18 PM   #486
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Just got through my signup (on CoveredCA.com) recently, and after submitting my income verification docs, I was able to choose a provider and enroll. The website now says I'm all done, but I still haven't had my verification confirmed yet.

Anyone know if that's normal (i.e. you can enroll in a policy even if your income verification docs haven't been approved)? Just trying to make sure this isn't yet another weird bug in the software...
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Old 11-04-2013, 04:56 PM   #487
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Just got through my signup (on CoveredCA.com) recently, and after submitting my income verification docs, I was able to choose a provider and enroll. The website now says I'm all done, but I still haven't had my verification confirmed yet.

Anyone know if that's normal (i.e. you can enroll in a policy even if your income verification docs haven't been approved)? Just trying to make sure this isn't yet another weird bug in the software...
I picked a policy in mid-October but didn't see any place to upload documents until a couple of weeks later. I just checked; the docs are still there, and I am still waiting for verification.
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Old 11-04-2013, 06:29 PM   #488
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Just spoke to a CSR at coveredca: The income verification and insurance enrollment are separate activities, so you don't need to wait for income verification to be complete before your insurance starts.

You will know that income verification is happening when you receive a welcome pack from coveredca in the mail with a status on your verification. You will also know that enrollment was successful when you receive a welcome pack from your selected insurance company.

The lady I spoke to seemed to think it was going to take some time for the welcome pack from coveredca, but it wasn't important since it doesn't hold up the enrollment...
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Old 11-04-2013, 07:12 PM   #489
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Just got through my signup (on CoveredCA.com) recently, and after submitting my income verification docs, I was able to choose a provider and enroll. The website now says I'm all done, but I still haven't had my verification confirmed yet.

Anyone know if that's normal (i.e. you can enroll in a policy even if your income verification docs haven't been approved)? Just trying to make sure this isn't yet another weird bug in the software...
Perfectly Normal...

They've decoupled insurance enrollment and verification of subsidy eligibility. You can check back on the web site every week or two for their special 'mail' or to look at the status of the verification (hint: It hasn't changed for anyone yet).

I'm in the same place. All done, submitted verification documents Friday, and am scheduled to receive enrollment documents in a few weeks. (I just enrolled in the plan we were being rolled to anyway for 2014, just in case I qualify for the subsidy next year. We are one of those borderline cases.)
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Old 11-04-2013, 07:22 PM   #490
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My identity verification has been stuck at "pending" for 3 weeks after uploading documents. I decided to start over with new email, user id, account with a clean PC, flushing IE after each use.

I got further this time, the verification went right thru, I was asked some ID questions, same standard one experian normally asks, car you own, county you live in etc. It now says I'm verified. Don't what it was doing for the previous 3 weeks. I suspect some of those original accounts have been whacked with all of the "fixes". I think this my 4th, 5th account.

Now to try and apply again...

UPDATE:

Made it through, verified and can now see available plans. Also got my tax subsidy.
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Old 11-07-2013, 11:05 AM   #491
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I think I may have been too clever for my own good. When I signed up I didn't input any income information since I was undecided on whether or not I wanted to manage our income to be eligible for a subsidy. I plan to decide it later and just claim any subsidy we qualify for on my tax return.

However, the more I look at this the more I think a catastrophic plan is best for us. The premiums are about $250/month less than the HSA-eligible bronze plan similar to our current HDHP and the coverage isn't all that much different. Interestingly, using the insurer's calculator the premiums, expected costs and OOP max for the catastrophic plan are each ~$3k a year less than the HSA-eligible bronze plan which is the lower premiums.

I think I should be eligible for the catastrophic plan even though we are over 30 because the cost of the cheapest bronze plan is more than 8% of our income, however since I didn't put in our income when I registered on the exchange the catastrophic plans don't show up as an option for us on the exchange's list of available health insurance plans. I suspect that it would if I had put in the income information.

I'm waiting for a call back from the exchange telling me how I can get back into our record and add in our income.

Have others out there whose income is greater than 400% FPL but whose lowest cost premium would be more than 8% of income seen catastrophic plans showing up on the menu of plans available to you?
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Old 11-07-2013, 11:18 AM   #492
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In answer to your last question , no I havent.

Regarding your desire to change your reported income, see this
How I stopped worrying and learned to love Obamacare

Good luck with that
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Old 11-07-2013, 11:25 AM   #493
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Thanks for that link. We have only two companies on the exchange in my county of NC: BCBS and Coventry. Coventry is rated lower, in general, and isn't much less expensive, so I guess I knw who I'll be buying from.
In my county in NC there are 31 plans listed - all BCBS. Can't say I'm surprised. Just from scanning the premiums quickly, however, it does look like there are a lot of choices. Good to know if things at w*ork change.

I am covered by insurance at my j*b, but I really feel for all the folks both on this forum and all around the country who are trying to sign up "for real." I was just curious, which is why I waited until last night to take a look. Didn't want to be part of the overwhelming traffic which contributed to some of the earlier problems on the website.
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Old 11-07-2013, 12:19 PM   #494
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I think I may have been too clever for my own good. When I signed up I didn't input any income information since I was undecided on whether or not I wanted to manage our income to be eligible for a subsidy. I plan to decide it later and just claim any subsidy we qualify for on my tax return.

However, the more I look at this the more I think a catastrophic plan is best for us. The premiums are about $250/month less than the HSA-eligible bronze plan similar to our current HDHP and the coverage isn't all that much different. Interestingly, using the insurer's calculator the premiums, expected costs and OOP max for the catastrophic plan are each ~$3k a year less than the HSA-eligible bronze plan which is the lower premiums.

I think I should be eligible for the catastrophic plan even though we are over 30 because the cost of the cheapest bronze plan is more than 8% of our income, however since I didn't put in our income when I registered on the exchange the catastrophic plans don't show up as an option for us on the exchange's list of available health insurance plans. I suspect that it would if I had put in the income information.

I'm waiting for a call back from the exchange telling me how I can get back into our record and add in our income.

Have others out there whose income is greater than 400% FPL but whose lowest cost premium would be more than 8% of income seen catastrophic plans showing up on the menu of plans available to you?
I'm not sure if I understand your situation completely but in helping our 26 year old son shop for insurance I learned that the Catastrophic Plans are not eligible for the subsidies.

From FAQ: All About Health Insurance Exchanges And How To Shop For Coverage : NPR

Scroll down to What's this about Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum plans?

Quote:
No matter which plan you choose, the 10 essential benefits remain the same. There is also the option to purchase catastrophic insurance low cost plans that cover minimal services but provide a safety net in the event of an accident or serious illness. But those plans do not come with subsidies.
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:35 PM   #495
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Correct, the catastrophic plan is not eligible for subsidies. However, the cost of the catastrophic plan is much less than the lowest cost bronze plan without subsidies.

IOW, lets say I target $90k of income/O-MAGI. The unsubsidized bronze plan would be $8,200 for the year or more than 8% of my income. My understanding is that since the lowest cost plan's premium exceeds 8% of my income that I would not be subject to the Obamacare penalty and could buy the catastrophic plan under the economic hardship exemption. The catastrophic plan would cost $5,100 a year and the coverage is not all that different from a bronze plan - the deductibles are $10k for the bronze plan and $12.7k for the catastrophic plan. If I can, I'll take the $3,100 in annual premium savings and take my chances on the $2,700 higher deductible.

Since our health care costs are only a few thousand a year, if I have a normal year then catastrophic plan would save me $3,100.

I'm pretty sure I have the right logic and would be eligible to buy a catastrophic plan, it is just a matter of figuring out how to actually do it. It is also complicated in that our state is not part of the federal system.
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:47 PM   #496
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Correct, the catastrophic plan is not eligible for subsidies. However, the cost of the catastrophic plan is much less than the lowest cost bronze plan without subsidies.

IOW, lets say I target $90k of income/O-MAGI. The unsubsidized bronze plan would be $8,200 for the year or more than 8% of my income. My understanding is that since the lowest cost plan's premium exceeds 8% of my income that I would not be subject to the Obamacare penalty and could buy the catastrophic plan under the economic hardship exemption. The catastrophic plan would cost $5,100 a year and the coverage is not all that different from a bronze plan - the deductibles are $10k for the bronze plan and $12.7k for the catastrophic plan. If I can, I'll take the $3,100 in annual premium savings and take my chances on the $2,700 higher deductible.

Since our health care costs are only a few thousand a year, if I have a normal year then catastrophic plan would save me $3,100.

I'm pretty sure I have the right logic and would be eligible to buy a catastrophic plan, it is just a matter of figuring out how to actually do it. It is also complicated in that our state is not part of the federal system.

are you comparing the premiums for the HSA eligible plan and Catastrophic plan at the same MAGI level? The HSA plan with HSA contribution would reduce your MAGI (don't forget the accelerated contribution). For couples it will be double. Since you seem to be not sure if you would qualify for subsidy, I am assuming you are pretty close to the edge. This might bring you under and make a difference. If you are definitely out of the subsidy range, of course, this would make no difference in the premium calculation -- but still can reduce the taxes, which can be as much as $2K to $2.5K depending on the state.
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Old 11-07-2013, 09:56 PM   #497
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are you comparing the premiums for the HSA eligible plan and Catastrophic plan at the same MAGI level? The HSA plan with HSA contribution would reduce your MAGI (don't forget the accelerated contribution). For couples it will be double. Since you seem to be not sure if you would qualify for subsidy, I am assuming you are pretty close to the edge. This might bring you under and make a difference. If you are definitely out of the subsidy range, of course, this would make no difference in the premium calculation -- but still can reduce the taxes, which can be as much as $2K to $2.5K depending on the state.
At $90k of income I would be over 400% FPL even after the $8,250 HSA deduction.
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Old 11-08-2013, 04:21 PM   #498
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I am one of these people Colorado Medicaid and state exchange rushing to streamline enrollments - The Denver Post

So I am hedging my bets and will stay with my current plan if and until I am actually enrolled in a market place plan and then cancel the old plan. Playing this game I could end up being double insured for a month.
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Old 11-08-2013, 07:46 PM   #499
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Anyone who is currently having major health issues and thinking of switching from their current individual health insurance plan to an Affordable Care Act insurance plan better do their homework first. I was diagnosed with multiple myeloma (a blood cancer) in June and will be undergoing a stem cell transplant in late December and going into early January. I was talking with the financial/insurance person with the group of doctors where I will be getting my stem cell transplant and was told that as of this week they would NOT be accepting any of the Affordable Care Act health insurance plans (Cigna, BCBS/TX and Aetna in the Dallas area) for a stem cell transplant. I was told that if I switched to one of those plans I would have to find someone else to do the transplant...or pay for it myself. So for now I've decided to stick with the Cigna health insurance plan that I currently have. I could probably find someone else to do the transplant but the group and hospital I'm looking at to do it is one of the best in the Dallas area and saving a few $grand is probably not my highest priority at this point. Luckily Cigna sent me a letter a month ago saying that my plan would remain the same in 2014 because the effective date of the plan would be 12/31/2013 rather than 01/01/2014...which means that they didn't have to meet all of the Affordable Care Act requirments. The only change was that my premium went up from $406/mo to $465/mo. I would have liked to have switched to an Affordable Care Act gold plan because my deductible would have been $2000-3000 less and my premium would have been about $80/month less....about a $3000-4000 savings over my current plan. But if I switched I'd be limiting myself to where I could get my health services.

So if you're having any major health related services done next year and have a choice as to whether you keep your current plan or switching, you might want to do some research to find out who will be accepting those new Affordable Care Act plans. I would hope that by a year from now more health groups would be accepting the Affordable Health Care plans for more health services after they know more details. Hopefully I can switch to an Affordable Care Act plan a year from now and be able to use the same doctors and hospitals I can use today.
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Old 11-08-2013, 08:29 PM   #500
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So if you're having any major health related services done next year and have a choice as to whether you keep your current plan or switching, you might want to do some research to find out who will be accepting those new Affordable Care Act plans.
Very good point. I hope it works out well for you. I wish you luck.

I wish they would have addressed this problem as part of ACA.

But this issue really is not specific to ACA itself. Every year, and even during the middle of a plan year from the consumer point of view, these network realignments have been taking place. The insurance companies "negotiate" with the providers and they sign contracts for a set amount of time. The consumers are just incidental mosquitoes in this elephant fight.

But now it is very visible as it affects a much larger population, all the three groups of the insurance equation namely consumers, insurance companies, and providers, all on a single transition date with a very convenient scapegoat excuse which is ACA.

In our area Blue Shield itself has about over 50 different plans, and about a dozen of them all starting with the phrase "Vital Shield Plus"; You have to check with a provider whether they take your specific plan. And it can change any time in the year, because we don't know what their contract period is.
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