I thought I would post my recent experience with signing up for healthcare via healthcare.gov. The executive summary is that it was easier than I thought, but let me explain.
After looking through the plans available in my home state of Florida, the only provider I had heard of was Blue Cross via Florida Blue. I figured that since I would probably want to stay with a known brand, I might as well go to one of their walk-in offices and sign up there.
I did this, and it was pretty easy, but there were a couple of "gotchas".
First, I had created my account on hc.gov, but had not picked a plan. I figured that the FL Blue person would simply be able to take that application and proceed.
But it appeared that she had her own portal entrance, and it ended up making things more complicated.
Second, because my COBRA ended on 11/30/18, I had to get signed up
for one month, then create a 2019 application as well.
Also, I had tried to upload my supporting documentation for my 2018 income. I am not sure why, but after two times uploading them, they
still did not show up on my application. It seemed like something the rep did may have dropped them.
We ended up with a Select Silver plan, and the subsidy is really good. We end up paying around $400+ a month for both health and dental.
One question I would like to ask others is this. My 2017 income still reflected my professional working salary, and is completely irrelevant to what I will make going forward. For 2018, I did get one delayed bonus check which will look like W2 income, but it was for < $3000. The rest of our income will be a small annuity payment, a small pension, our investment income, and my wife's "summer job", which is about $12K W2 income.
So for proof of my income, I included the 2018 pay stub (no W2 yet), the 2017 annuity 1099, the estimate for my pension (no 1099 yet, just started this year), the wife's last W2 pay stub for 2018, and the Fidelity 1099 for our investment income.
I believe that this will estimate our 2018 income pretty well. For 2019, it will be essentially the same, minus my 2018 W2 bonus. But I will have a 1099 for the 2018 pension soon.
Since this is not a simple "send us your last year's tax return" scenario, I figure that I will have to go through more pain dealing with the government on this.
Does is sound like I did the right thing, and that this should suffice?
"Don't ever take a fence down until you know the reason it was put up" - G. K. Chesterton..