The Affordable Care Act is a law with many complex parts. One of those parts, the individual mandate to have a minimum standard of health insurance coverage, goes into effect on January 1, 2014. Because health insurance is unaffordable for many, the law created a premium tax credit and cost-sharing subsidy to ease the financial burden of health insurance for individuals and families whose household incomes fall below four times the Federal Poverty Level. The law called for the creation of state health insurance marketplaces to facilitate access to the tax credit and cost-sharing subsidies and to streamline the application and enrollment process for health insurance plans. For those state governments who refused to participate, like North Carolina, the federal government created the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace.
On October 1, the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace opened for enrollment. Despite some significant problems with the roll-out of the website, enrollment continues online, by phone, or by mail. The PowerPoint slides posted below provide introductory information about the Marketplace to help familiarize you with some basic details you need to know to successfully enroll through the Marketplace. For more detailed resources, please visit our web page about the Affordable Care Act.