By January 31 2016 all U.S. citizens living in the United States, all permanent residents, and all foreign nationals who qualify as resident aliens for tax purposes must have health insurance.
We at the Model Alliance are thrilled about our health care partnership with the Center for Frontline Retail. Model Alliance members can make a FREE appointment with the Health Care Access Program (HCAP) to determine if they qualify for free or low-cost health insurance through the New York State of Health Marketplace.
Uninsured? Call HCAP’s Health Care Access hotline today at 646.918.6907.
Below we have answered frequently asked questions about HCAP, the Affordable Care Act, how much coverage costs, and more.
What is the Center for Frontline Retail?
The Center for Frontline Retail is an organization of retail and fashion workers dedicated to improving opportunities and workplace standards in the retail industry. As an official health care Navigator, HCAP also helps people who are uninsured to enroll in health insurance plans.
What’s up with the new health care law? Is it really happening?
Here are three important aspects of the new law.
1. It requires all U.S. citizens living in the United States, all permanent residents, and all foreign nationals who qualify as resident aliens for tax purposes to have medical coverage by January 31st 2016.
2. It expands Medicaid coverage. This means that if you’re single and make under $15,000 per year, you could get free health insurance!
3. It provides access to low-cost health care on an online marketplace. Think of HCAP’s Navigators as your free personal shoppers who will help you compare the costs of several plans to determine which one is right for you.
When Can I Enroll and How Soon Will I be Covered?
November 1, 2015: Open Enrollment started — first day you can enroll in a 2016 insurance plan. Coverage can start as soon as January 1, 2016.
- December 15, 2015: Last day to enroll in or change plans for new coverage to start January 1, 2016
- January 1, 2016: 2016 coverage starts for those who enroll or change plans by December 15.
- January 15, 2016: Last day to enroll in or change plans for new coverage to start February 1, 2016
- January 31, 2016: 2016 Open Enrollment ends. Enrollments or changes between January 16 and January 31 take effect March 1, 2016.
If you don’t have coverage by January 31, you won’t be able to get coverage through the New York State of Health Marketplace until the next open enrollment period and could face heavy penalties when you file your next year's taxes.
I'm not a U.S. Citizen or Green Card holder. Do I have to have medical coverage?
The law requires that all foreign nationals who are in are in the United States long enough during a calendar year to qualify as resident aliens for tax purposes must have health coverage. That means that means that if you are a model on a visa and you also pay Federal taxes in the US, you must get health insurance or pay a fine.
Foreign nationals who live in the United States for a short enough period that they do not become resident aliens for federal income tax do not need to get health insurance, even though they may have to file a U.S. income tax return. (See here for more info.)
If you are unsure about whether you have been in the US long enough in the calendar year to be considered a "resident alien for tax purposes” and if you are required to get health insurance, this page from the IRS provides guidelines. http://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc851.html
What if I am young and don't need it?
Since January 2014, you have been required to have health insurance or you are subject to penalty fines. Signing up for a plan will protect your health and your finances.
Did you know that medical bill costs contribute to the vast majority of bankruptcies?
You may be healthy now, but if you get sick or injured, you may have to pay out-of-pocket for your entire bill. Even a broken bone can cost several thousand dollars without insurance. The health care plans offered on the exchange provide access to free preventative care – including immunizations, methods of contraception, and HIV and STI screenings and counseling. Signing up for a plan now will protect your health and your finances.
How much is a health care plan going to cost?
This depends on your income and how much coverage you need. If you make under $15,000 a year, health coverage is FREE. If you make $20,000 and have no children, plans start at just $59 per month. Anyone making under $45,000 qualifies for government subsidies that lower the monthly cost.
What kind of paperwork do I need?
- Your passport or driver’s license for ID
- Your social security number
- An idea of how much money you will make next year.
How can I sign up?
Get started by calling 646.918.6907 to make a free appointment with a HCAP Health Care Access Program Navigator.