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    Open Enrollment has ended…now what??

    Posted: April 9, 2014

    In order to make changes to your policy or to obtain new coverage you MUST qualify for a “special election period”.  Qualifying events that entitle you to a special election period are listed below.




    *Loss of employer sponsored health insurance

    *Exhaustion of COBRA

    *A dependent turning 26 and is currently covered under their parent’s plan

    *Your current plan is up for renewal outside of open enrollment

    *Change of income resulting in newly eligible/ineligible for a tax credit

    *Loss of eligibility to Medicaid or CHIP

    *Divorce/legal separation

    *Death of the primary policyholder

    *Gaining status as a citizen

    *No longer incarcerated

    The End of Open Enrollment

    Posted: March 5, 2014

    On March 31st, 2014 the historic 1st year of the Health Care Reform Act enrollment will come to a close.  As a last reminder, if you are eligible for enrollment this is what you can expect…



    • If you currently have a health insurance plan, you will NOT be able to make ANY changes until the next open enrollment.  Generally the open enrollment period will be each year between October-December.  Any changes made during this time will take effect January 1, 2015.
    • If you are still planning to enroll, policies applied for by March 15th will take effect April 1st.  Policies applied for between March 16-March 31st will take effect May 1st.  As long as you make a decision by March 31st you will avoid the penalty.
    • If you qualified for a subsidy (via the marketplace) be sure to check your results.  MANY require that you send additional documentation by the end of open enrollment in order to keep your subsidy.  The additional requirements can be sent via mail or uploaded to your marketplace account.  If you plan on mailing the documents I suggest sending it certified so you have proof that it was received.



    • You will be locked out of being able to join a plan…unless you fall into a special election period (marriage, child birth, loss of coverage, etc).  If you’ve chosen this option I recommend purchasing a critical illness/accident plan. It is NOT the same as health insurance but in the event you injure yourself or are diagnosed with a critical illness, the plan will pay you an allotted amount ($5,000-$50,000). The plans start as low as $2 per month for critical illness and $15 per month for accident coverage.
    • You can expect to receive a $95 per person ($47.5 per child under the age of 18) penalty on your 2014 federal tax return (this will increase in 2015)

    How to Offset High Deductibles Associated with Healthcare Reform

    Posted: February 22, 2014

    Have you heard about Critical Illness Insurance and Accident Coverage?

    • Critical illness insurance is an insurance product, where the insurer is contracted to typically make a lump sum cash payment if the policyholder is diagnosed with one of the critical illnesses listed in the insurance policy (usually cancer, heart attack, or stroke).
    • Accident Coverage is an insurance product, where the insurer is contracted to typically make a lump sum cash payment if the policyholder is involved in an accident at work or play (examples include: broken bones, stitches, sports related injuries and general clumsiness).


    Since preventative services come standard with ALL plans you are more likely to use your deductible due to a critical illness or injury. The purpose of these plans are to use the funds towards your deductible.


    Rates depend upon age and amount of coverage but can start as low as $2.75 per month with $10,000 in coverage.

    Open Enrollment Events

    Posted: October 11, 2013

    I will be participating in multiple events during open enrollment.


    *Healthcare Reform/”Obamacare” Open House
    Every Saturday starting October 5th-December 14th 10am-2pm
    Prime Realty: 17208 Oak Park Avenue Tinley Park, IL 60477
    -The open house will be closed November 30th-


    *Medicare Open House
    Every Tuesday October 15th-December 3rd 10am-2pm
    Additional dates added December 5th and December 7th 10am-2pm
    Prime Realty: 17208 Oak Park Avenue Tinley Park, IL 60477


    *Medicare Community Event for United Healthcare/AARP Plans
    October 29th and November 13th 10am-11am
    Prime Realty: 17208 Oak Park Avenue Tinley Park, IL 60477


    *Healthcare Reform and Medicare Educational Booth
    CVS 8811 W 87th Street Hickory Hills, IL 60457
    October 16th 2pm-6pm
    November 6th 2pm-6pm
    December 4th 2pm-6pm
    January 15th 2pm-6pm
    March 5th 2pm-6pm
    March 19th 2pm-6pm

    What should you expect with the new Healthcare Reform Act, otherwise known as “Obamacare”???

    Posted: October 4, 2013

    *EVERYONE can expect to see a 3-5% increase on their health insurance premiums. This is the cost associated with the new tax to fund the Healthcare Reform.


    *Those that have purchased coverage on their own can expect to see a 40-60% rate increase on current rates.


    * BCBS is renewing ALL plans effective January 1st. Those with BCBS can expect to see the increase and the essential benefits added at that time.


    *Humana, United Health, and Assurant plans will not see the rate increase or the essential benefits added until your plan renewal date.
    PLEASE NOTE, if your plan effective date was prior to March 23, 2010 your plan is considered “grandfathered” and you will not be required to accept the new essential benefits. In turn you will have lower rates; however if you make ANY changes to your plan you will lose your “grandfathered” status.


    *EVERYONE will have the option to view plans on or off the exchange. Selecting a plan on the exchange will qualify you for the subsidy or cost sharing. Pricing for both options has been released this week. I am certified to review plans to determine which route is better for you and your family.


    *The subsidy is based on household size and annual income. If you qualify for the subsidy, you can elect to have the funds applied towards your monthly health insurance premium or you can have the funds applied towards your tax return.


    *9.23.13 Health Insurance Carriers released a letter to those that have purchased coverage on their own, explaining options. The letter requires that you return it by 12/15/2013 if you are choosing a different plan. I would be happy to discuss your options, please contact me before returning this letter.

    These are just a few of the details of this new law. I will be available to answer your questions or get you signed up every Saturday in October from 10am-2pm. I will be located at my office in the Prime Realty Building at 17208 Oak Park Avenue Tinley Park, IL 60477. Please stop by so we can get you headed in the right direction.


    Feel free to email or call me with any questions or comments about my services or if you have any insurance related inquires.


    Phone: 708.444.0050
    Email: kelly@kellyburkeinsurance.com


    Monday - Friday: 10am - 5pm
    Evening and weekends
    available upon request