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Affordable Care Act

What is the Affordable Care Act?

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) creates basic guidelines for health insurance plans to make sure you have the coverage you need at an affordable rate, especially when you get sick and need it most.

  • Although all plans will cover the essential health benefits, you will be able to determine which insurance plan best fits your health and financial needs.
  • If you have Medicare, Medicaid or Private Health Insurance you are covered
  • If you have Medicaid (medical card, public assistance), you are covered and do not need to apply again.
  • If you have Medicare you do not need to do anything. Medicare is not part of the Health Insurance Marketplace, you are considered covered.
  • If you have private health insurance, you can compare other policies and rates at the Health Insurance Marketplace Illinois.
  • Beginning October 2013, by filling out one application, one time, you and your family can explore every qualified health insurance plan in your area.
    • you may be eligible to get lower costs every month
    • you may be eligible for a free premium plan or a new kind of tax credit that lowers your monthly premiums right away
    • you can see what your premium, deductibles and out-of-pocket costs will be before you make a decision to enroll
    • you can make comparisons of costs and coverage among health insurance plans

Important Things to Note

  • Insurance premiums will be based on income level, age, household size, tobacco use and address.
  • There are no exclusions or higher rates for pre-existing conditions.
  • Medicaid in Illinois has been expanded to include more adults than ever before.
    • To learn if you qualify click HERE

Things to Know About the Application Process

To apply for coverage in the Health Insurance Marketplace, you will need to provide some information about you and your household, including income, any insurance you currently have and some additional items. You can speed the application process by having the following personal information available:

  • Social Security numbers (or document number for legal immigrants). To obtain a replacement card, please visit, call (800) 772-1213 or visit your local Social Security office.
  • Employer and income information for every member of your household who needs coverage (pay stubs, W-2 forms, wage and tax statements). To obtain a replacement W-2 from the Internal Revenue Service, you can either call (800) 829-1040 or complete and submit a transcript request form from
  • Policy numbers for any current health insurance plans covering members of your household.

Important Dates

November 1, 2017 - Open enrollment started -- first day to enroll, re-enroll, or change a 2017 insurance plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Coverage can start as soon as January 1, 2018.
December 15, 2017 - Last day to enroll in or change plans for coverage to start January 1, 2017
January 1, 2018 - 2017 coverage starts for those who enroll and pay their premium or change plans by December 15.

Important Websites


US Government

National Health Insurance Marketplace

GetCovered Illinois Help Line - (866) 311-1119