What Young Adults Need to Know About Health Care Reform

Posted on Mar 3rd 2014 by Victoria Edwards

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There are 19 million young adults across the country that lack basic health coverage. Are you one these 19 million people? If so, we’re here to help you understand what you need to know about the Affordable Care Act (or health care reform), by providing information and resources to help find the coverage you need. What is The Affordable Care Act? On March 23, 2010 the federal government passed the health care reform law, or the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This law makes health insurance available to more people, so more can get the care they need. The Affordable Care Act gives young adults greater control over their own health care. The cost of your health plan depends on:
  • The size of your family
  • The ages of everyone applying for coverage
  • Where you live
  • Whether you use tobacco (if you do, you’ll pay more)
Health Insurance Coverage & 26 Years of Age The health care law requires insurers to allow young adults to remain on a parent’s plan only until their 26th birthday. If you are younger than 26, you can join or remain on your parent’s plan even if you are.
  • Attending school
  • Married
  • Not living with their parents
  • Not financially dependent on their parents
  • Eligible to enroll in their employer’s plan
When you turn 26, then you have the option of either joining your employer’s health plan or buying a health insurance plan individually either through the Marketplace or through an insurance company. If you do not buy a health insurance plan at all, then you may have to pay a fee. Up until you are 30 years old, you may qualify to purchase a catastrophic plan. A catastrophic Plan, is only for single people under age 30, or people who qualify through financial hardship. Catastrophic Plans cost less money, but have fewer benefits. They include preventive benefits, but don't cover as much when you are sick. And they usually have high deductibles. While insurance companies are required to allow parents to keep their children on their plan until age 26, your parents aren’t required to keep you on their plan. This is because you always have the opportunity to buy your own plan. What is the Marketplace? The Marketplace is an insurance exchange established by the government where people can shop and compare health plans online. Florida Blue can walk you through the Marketplace, help you buy a health plan that meets your needs and then help enroll you in the plan. Where Do I Find More Information for Health Care Reform? Florida Blue has many resources to help you every step of the way.  Here are 5 ways to find out more about health insurance.
  1. Call 1-800-633-6808 or your local insurance agent
  2. Click floridablue.com
  3. Visit a Florida Blue Center
  4. Visit our Health Care Reform Website
  5. Read more about Health Care Reform on our blog. Some blogs you could read are Top 5 Questions About Health Care Reform, What is a Subsidy? Getting Help Paying for Health Insurance or Health Care Reform Glossary: Terms You Should Know.

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Victoria Edwards

Victoria Edwards is the Digital Content Strategist for Florida Blue. You can find her tweeting on her own personal handle at, @TallChickVic. When she’s not working on content or social media, she loves blogging for other online publications, like Search Engine Watch or keeping fit by running, playing tennis or swimming.

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