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WA HealthPlanFinder: When can you select PTC options?
Old 11-09-2019, 03:58 PM   #1
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WA HealthPlanFinder: When can you select PTC options?

I'm about to sign up for an ACA health plan for the first time on the Washington HealthPlanFinder website, and have first-timer's jitters.

I'm at the point where I'll click Confirm to finalize my selection. I did carefully enter our expected income for 2020, and DH and I qualify for premium tax credits, but the page shows the full-price premium. I'm wondering if I'll be prompted to make the selection for the monthly advanced PTCs or the tax-time reconciliation after I hit Confirm.

Can anyone tell me if I should confirm my selection when it shows the full-priced premium, and expect to select the PTC type after that? The site's Chat service isn't operating today, and I'm nervous about saying yes to over $1500/month.
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Old 11-11-2019, 12:47 PM   #2
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I would suggest calling an ACA enrolled agent for assistance. They offer to walk you through the process for first time enrollees, at no charge. The toll free number is usually listed on the website, at least it did for me in California. I left a request for assistance on their website, along with my phone number, and an agent called me back in 20 minutes.

Or you can click “confirm,” possibly find that the subsidy does not show up, then call for an enrolled agent to assist straightening out the details of your application. Either way, you’ll end up getting your premium credits.
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Old 11-11-2019, 01:16 PM   #3
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Here in Washington you can also make a free appointment with a Healthcare Navigator, who are usually based in community health clinics -- I am in Seattle and use one based at Neighborcare Health. They have direct access to the system and can verify that your application is submitted correctly, and also help with any changes you may make later due to changes in income, etc. MUCH easier than trying to deal with the system by phone or email.
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Old 11-11-2019, 01:36 PM   #4
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Yes, thanks to you both, I'll call this morning.

I think I know what happened. I'm on Cobra through the end of the year, so for the question 'Are you eligible for company sponsored healthcare', I answered 'yes' and gave my policy information. I thought I'd be able to enter the date I expect to end Cobra, but that never came up. That probably explains why they think I'm not eligible for the tax credit.
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Old 11-11-2019, 02:17 PM   #5
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Yes, that answer would disqualify you from receiving premium credits.
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Old 11-11-2019, 06:47 PM   #6
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The "Report a change" function on the exchange website let me remove our eligibility for employer-sponsored healthcare. Then the system correctly deducted the tax credit from our premium for 2020. Also uploaded brokerage statements for income verification. Pretty easy overall!

On the exchange's survey, I said they should clarify that Cobra eligibility is not the same as eligibility for employee-sponsored healthcare. Googled that question, and it came up, so I must not be the only one who felt unsure about it.
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