Affordable Care Act Deadline Could Cost You

Updated: 03/29/2014 6:09 PM
Created: 03/29/2014 4:26 PM
By: Travis Dill

Monday is the deadline to sign up for health insurance through or Missing the cut could mean a federal tax penalty, but trained navigators at UMD on Saturday said sign up can be quick.

The Northland Community Wellness Day at UMD was the perfect spot to make a last minute push for MNsure. The online health care exchange is a one-stop shop for plans, and navigators like Andy Hardman are ready to help.

“Basically, [we] help lead people through the process from applying to actually acquiring health care,” Hardman said.

The process was surprisingly easy and helpful according to Skylar Scott.

“It took 15 to 20 minutes, very easy,” Scott said. “How cheap it was, I was surprised how cheap it was.”

The 23-year-old is a student at Lake Superior College. He said the plan he got through MNsure was less expensive than getting added onto his parents insurance. He said that meant more money in his pocket.

“Well it was either going to be $175 a month or $30 a month with these guys so thanks Obama,” Scott said.

But income-based discounts like that will expire at the end of the month according to Hardman.

“In order to get a discounted policy through MNsure...that's what the March 31 deadline is for,” Hardman said.

The same deadline applies to those in Wisconsin who would be using the federal exchange, Failing to acquire insurance by the deadline could mean a federal tax penalty next year of $95 or 1 percent of your annual income.

“But that penalty is going to go up every year to a point where, I think, in 2016 it will be in the hundreds of dollars,” Hardman said.

Scott said that is a negative of the Affordable Care Act, but he was thankful to find a cheap health care plan.

“It was probably a good thing I was forced to get health insurance because I don't know if I would have if I didn't have this,” Scott said.

Other Minnesotans did the same with over 152,000 finding plans through MNsure, and boasts that 6 million people have found health plans nationwide.

There is an online form on that will make sure you can avoid the tax penalty. Northlanders can call the United Way at 211 to find a navigator nearby.

Front Page

  • Justin's 2014-2015 Winter Prediction

    Winter is right around the corner and the question on everybody's mind is will we have a winter like last year.  With record stretches of cold and record snowfall last year is one we one like to forget. Chief meteorologist Justin Liles lets us know what we can expect this year

  • Woman in Douglas Co. Shootout was found Unresponsive in House Fire Day Before

    A 22-year-old Lake Nebagamon woman was hospitalized on Wednesday evening after an armed standoff with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. On Tuesday, authorities say that same woman was found by her neighbors unresponsive and not breathing after they saw flames coming from a downtown Lake Nebagamon home. 

  • Funding for Military Funeral Personnel Restored

    On Thursday, Rep. Rick Nolan received a letter from the Secretary of the Army that funding for the playing of "Taps," a rifle salute, and delivering a folded American flag will be restored.

  • Preparing for Ebola: Health System Working Together

    People who work in the Northland's health system are communicating on a regular basis, to prepare for Ebola, even though it's unlikely to appear here.

  • St. Luke's Honored by American Heart Association

    St. Luke's received three honors from the American Heart Association on Thursday, for their approach and teamwork when taking care of heart and stroke patients.


Lake Effect Snow Advisory

Expires: 10/31/2014 11:00 AM

Lake Effect Snow Advisory

Expires: 10/31/2014 11:00 AM

Lakeshore Flood Advisory

MI AREAS AFFECTED: Alger; Baraga; Gogebic; Houghton; Keweenaw; Marquette; Ontonagon
Expires: 10/31/2014 2:00 PM

Lake Effect Snow Advisory

MI AREAS AFFECTED: Gogebic; Houghton; Keweenaw; Ontonagon; Southern Houghton
Expires: 10/31/2014 12:00 PM