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Old 01-13-2014, 05:29 PM   #161
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I began trying to signup on healthcare.gov at midnight on October 1. I work with computers, so I can generally get through an online form. This was not the case for Healthcare.gov. Despite repeated attempts and multiple calls to the help desk, I was never able to successfully complete an online application...
I am glad I never bothered to even try to sign up, just from reading stories like yours. Surely, some people were able to get through but with my luck, which was never in abundance, I would be driven insane or died of a heart attack due to the aggravation.

Why couldn't they let people deal directly with the insurer, then settle the financial aspect with the IRS later as has been the case with mortgage deduction, various college tuition credits, etc...? Is this a gauntlet to ensure only the people most worthy and most determined would get through, while the weak, the impatient, the easily discouraged like myself would get screened out? Hence I did not even try, as I most likely would fail.

I may try again next year, but right now I want to kiss the provider of my grandfathered policy on the cheek. He pulled out completely off California, but kept the business in my state.
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Old 01-13-2014, 05:45 PM   #162
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We presently have coverage thru my former employer's retirement health plan. I am in the process of at least applying for ACA for my family. I called the help desk regarding my son (20 yrs. old)who we declare as a dependent on our tax forms but he does fill his own tax return. The ACA help desk rep said this could hold my the ACA application. Her suggestion was to include our son' income in my/wife's future tax returns and there would be no holdup in the aca app. This does not make sense to me. Has anyone heard of this before?
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Old 01-13-2014, 06:38 PM   #163
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Originally Posted by golfnut View Post
We presently have coverage thru my former employer's retirement health plan. I am in the process of at least applying for ACA for my family. I called the help desk regarding my son (20 yrs. old)who we declare as a dependent on our tax forms but he does fill his own tax return. The ACA help desk rep said this could hold my the ACA application. Her suggestion was to include our son' income in my/wife's future tax returns and there would be no holdup in the aca app. This does not make sense to me. Has anyone heard of this before?
Not heard that, but;
Does it has to do with subsidy eligibility? Give their suggestion a go, can it hurt?
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Old 01-13-2014, 08:54 PM   #164
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We got our new ID cards. They were forwarded on Dec 28, so they must have been mailed very late in the month.

We FINALLY got hold of a human by DH calling a few minutes before they opened. Wait time was less than 15 mins. They (said they) fixed the double billing issue - yes, it was supposed to happen automatically, but it turned out their new system didn't talk to their old system..... (So they had to go in and cancel DH's old policy)

We also checked on the bank draft setup for our payments. DHs account info wasn't in the system that the associate could see - so she took that info. Same for me - even though they drafted my initial payment.

So clearly BCBSTX has had a bunch of issues with their IT systems - and BTW they switched to a new system this year.

We might be all set........
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Old 01-13-2014, 10:16 PM   #165
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Finally got my Anthem CA id cards (actually received in mail this past Saturday). Registered online for the new policy, and noticed that there's basically no information about the policy on line. Also received zero additional pieces of documentation with my id cards. I assume, at some later point in time, they will send me more details about my policy, but as of now, just glad to have ID cards.

Also, still have not been charged for anything. I'm not too surprised that the govt. screwed up the launch as bad as they did, but must admit that I'm surprised by Anthem's incompetence in this...
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Old 01-13-2014, 11:03 PM   #166
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Some good news in my trying to get somewhere with Anthem (Empire BCBS) and my enrollment.

I got an email back from the Anthem rep who gave me my ACN last week. She confirmed my payment and gave me an actual policy ID. I tried to print out a temporary ID but got an error message from their system stating "this feature was unavailable now." Gee, what a surprise, another obstacle. I did request ID cards be sent to me.

I still need the welcome package, too. One step at a time......
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Old 01-13-2014, 11:28 PM   #167
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Originally Posted by golfnut View Post
We presently have coverage thru my former employer's retirement health plan. I am in the process of at least applying for ACA for my family. I called the help desk regarding my son (20 yrs. old)who we declare as a dependent on our tax forms but he does fill his own tax return. The ACA help desk rep said this could hold my the ACA application. Her suggestion was to include our son' income in my/wife's future tax returns and there would be no holdup in the aca app. This does not make sense to me. Has anyone heard of this before?
Subsidies are based on family income.
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Old 01-14-2014, 06:53 AM   #168
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Originally Posted by golfnut View Post
We presently have coverage thru my former employer's retirement health plan. I am in the process of at least applying for ACA for my family. I called the help desk regarding my son (20 yrs. old)who we declare as a dependent on our tax forms but he does fill his own tax return. The ACA help desk rep said this could hold my the ACA application. Her suggestion was to include our son' income in my/wife's future tax returns and there would be no holdup in the aca app. This does not make sense to me. Has anyone heard of this before?
The idea, I think, is that if you are to claim him as a dependent on your tax return and you want to include him in your application for a tax credit (subsidy), you need to include his income as part of the household income in the process.

https://www.healthcare.gov/what-inco...lace-coverage/

Quote:
When you apply for lower costs in the Marketplace, you’ll need to estimate your income for 2014.

You can start by adding up the following items for:

You and your spouse, if you are married and will file a joint tax return
Any dependents who make enough money to be required to file a tax return
So to include a child as a dependent on your Marketplace application for ACA purposes, you apparently need to (a) include their income in your household income using IRS Form 8814. I think the suggestion was that having all the income on one tax return might uncomplicate the process, but it could also add enough additional tax burden so as to negate any tax credits from HI subsidies so it may not be worth it. Grab a spreadsheet, run the numbers both ways and see if the savings in HI premiums would be worth the possible higher tax rates of including his income on your return.
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Old 01-14-2014, 07:25 AM   #169
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Some good news in my trying to get somewhere with Anthem (Empire BCBS) and my enrollment.
It may not help any but this article describe some of the issues in NY, specifically most are related to empire.

New York Consumers Frustrated By Insurance Delays – Capsules - The KHN Blog

It seems a lot of the issues are related to specific carries in individual states.
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Old 01-15-2014, 09:18 AM   #170
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Fourth Time's The Charm

I finally got Anthem BCBS CA to take our money. I was able to get into out account on their site, set up ePay, see the bill, and pay it. It was debited from our checking account today.

"Hey, Al," you may say, "They told you everything was fine, why didn't you just wait for them to eventually charge your card/checking account instead of paying four times?"

1. It's very unlikely, but BCBS could be dumb enough to cancel my policy, saying I never paid. Their bill explicitly stated that they hadn't received any payment.

BCBS has a deep reservoir of dumbness to draw on. For example, it states on their bill that "If you applied for coverage through the Exchange, you will have to make addresses changes through the Exchange."

2. Interest rates are so low that any income I'd receive on the extra $196 is negligible.

3. I'd rather argue about getting credit for the extra payments than argue about getting payment for a new liver.
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Old 01-15-2014, 09:45 AM   #171
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Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post
The idea, I think, is that if you are to claim him as a dependent on your tax return and you want to include him in your application for a tax credit (subsidy), you need to include his income as part of the household income in the process.

https://www.healthcare.gov/what-inco...lace-coverage/



So to include a child as a dependent on your Marketplace application for ACA purposes, you apparently need to (a) include their income in your household income using IRS Form 8814. I think the suggestion was that having all the income on one tax return might uncomplicate the process, but it could also add enough additional tax burden so as to negate any tax credits from HI subsidies so it may not be worth it. Grab a spreadsheet, run the numbers both ways and see if the savings in HI premiums would be worth the possible higher tax rates of including his income on your return.

Thanks a lot for this. Makes sense, I guess.
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Old 01-15-2014, 10:19 AM   #172
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Just got a call from Anthem. (At least they are calling me now instead of my trying to call them and get put on hold.) After the obligatory apologies for slow service, she was able to answer some additional questions. She said the posting of my payment triggers the release of a Welcome Package and ID cards which I should be receiving any day now. We also discussed how I should pay my February payment if I do not receive a premium notice more than a few days before Feb 1.

So things are looking up, slowly......
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Old 01-15-2014, 12:08 PM   #173
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I just called our insurer to ask about how to make the February payment. On the site there is a link to Intuit Xpress Bill Pay but the link goes nowhere. I set up an Xpress Bill Pay account but the insurer is not one of their listed businesses to pay.

The customer rep told me that none of the payment system is active yet. They hope to send out invoices by the end of January. If they don't, I'll just mail a check like I did for the January payment.

She was genuinely surprised that someone was looking to pay a bill early!
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Old 01-15-2014, 02:56 PM   #174
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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
I finally got Anthem BCBS CA to take our money. I was able to get into out account on their site, set up ePay, see the bill, and pay it. It was debited from our checking account today.

"Hey, Al," you may say, "They told you everything was fine, why didn't you just wait for them to eventually charge your card/checking account instead of paying four times?"

1. It's very unlikely, but BCBS could be dumb enough to cancel my policy, saying I never paid. Their bill explicitly stated that they hadn't received any payment.

BCBS has a deep reservoir of dumbness to draw on. For example, it states on their bill that "If you applied for coverage through the Exchange, you will have to make addresses changes through the Exchange."

2. Interest rates are so low that any income I'd receive on the extra $196 is negligible.

3. I'd rather argue about getting credit for the extra payments than argue about getting payment for a new liver.

TromboneAl: Would you tell me if your payment took overnight to post? I logged in to Anthem this morning after seeing your post (Thanks!) and paid with a checking account. I got a nice payment confirmation but it still has not posted on our bank account. Usually those payments at Costco or wherever post almost immediately.
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Old 01-15-2014, 03:09 PM   #175
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The customer rep told me that none of the payment system is active yet. They hope to send out invoices by the end of January. If they don't, I'll just mail a check like I did for the January payment.

She was genuinely surprised that someone was looking to pay a bill early!
The good news is, once you have established a policy by applying, enrolling and making the first payment, you will not be unenrolled for nonpayment until 90 days have passed, so if they continue to have problems causing late payments, it would take a while before you would be kicked out. The insurer pays the claims for the first 30 days past due, and in days 31-90 your coverage is still not terminated but the insurer does not pay the claim until you make up the arrears and get current on your payments (the claims will remain "pending" and not paid out to the provider). Only after premiums are more than 90 days past due will you be disenrolled.

And for what it's worth, I think people are only "looking to pay a bill early" because we don't yet have confidence that the payments will be posted and acknowledged correctly and in a timely manner!
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Old 01-15-2014, 03:34 PM   #176
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Thanks.
BCBSKC actually gave me a welcome call today. Wanted to know if I had card, welcome pack etc. She confirmed my January payment, she asked about February. Let her know I'd paid, she confirmed and noticed I'd set up monthly payments. Started talking about signing on to their site, let her know I'd had created an account. Asked if I had a PCP, in plan, even offered to check it. Got the impression she hadn't talked to many folks that were done.

Guess their not as busy in the welcome department of the business.
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Old 01-16-2014, 08:38 AM   #177
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Anthem finally took my payment! I can hardly believe it. Thanks for the tip TromboneAl.
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Old 01-16-2014, 10:37 AM   #178
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So far so good with my new Aetna policy. I saw my specialist this week and it was nice to have a $30 co-pay instead of $60.

I signed up on Aetna's website to automatically charge my premiums to a credit card, but I am going to call to make sure I did it correctly. There was a box to check that said auto draft, which to me sounds more like an automatic deduction from a bank account. But I checked the box. I just want to make sure that my next bill gets paid on time.
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Old 01-16-2014, 11:40 AM   #179
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TromboneAl: Would you tell me if your payment took overnight to post? I logged in to Anthem this morning after seeing your post (Thanks!) and paid with a checking account. I got a nice payment confirmation but it still has not posted on our bank account. Usually those payments at Costco or wherever post almost immediately.
No, it took one additional day or so, as you found.
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:21 PM   #180
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Finally our REAL ID cards arrived from Anthem BC of California.

:-)
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