Question: I am 59 years old, have Anthem Blue Cross as an individual and not thru an employer. I earn about $27,000 a year. I can hardly afford my premiums. Will I be able to switch to a subsidized California Exchange program by just applying? How will I switch to the Exchange without a lapse in insurance? How will the Exchange rates be for me as an individual with my earnings?
Answer: If you apply for Covered California coverage during the open enrollment period starting October 1, 2013, your coverage will begin on January 1, 2014. You may cancel your current individual health insurance at that time and not have a lapse in coverage. Your agent will help you with this or Anthem Blue Cross will probably provide an easy way to do all this through them. Assuming your adjusted gross income (AGI) is $27,000, your premium subsidy should cover about two-thirds of the monthly premium. (Please understand that this is a rough estimate based on what we know at this point in time. Things will change, but this should be in the ballpark.)