Health insurance deadline approaching

101,276 Georgians are now enrolled in plans under the Affordable Care Act, according to the latest numbers from the Department of Health and Human Services.

That's almost 73 times the number of Georgians who were enrolled three months ago.

Over the past several months, the Obama administration has made some changes to rules under the law.

Last year, more than 4.7 million people were hit with cancellation notices for health plans they wanted to keep because those plans didn't comply with the new health law.

On Wednesday, the administration announced they'll allow people to renew those non-compliant plans through 2016.

Glitches, technical problems, error messages and frustration plagued the federal health insurance exchange since its launch on October 1.

On Friday, the administration said those who bought plans outside the exchange because of technical problems on the exchange can apply for tax credits and subsidies to help off-set the cost.

Previously, that financial help was only available to people who bought a plan through a federal or state-run insurance marketplace.

As the open enrollment period for buying health insurance winds down, here are some things to keep in mind:

-You won't be able to buy health insurance after March 31, whether that's a private plan or through the federal exchange at

-The next time you'd be able to buy a plan is in November, when the next enrollment period starts

-The only exception to that rule is if you have a "qualifying life event" like a job loss or the birth of a child

-If you choose not to get covered, you'll be fined on your 2015 income taxes. That's $95 per uninsured adult and $47.50 per child or 1 percent of your income; whichever's higher

-That number will keep climbing for each year you're uninsured. In 2015, that fine goes up to 2% of income or $325 per person. In 2016 and later years, it goes up to 2.5% of income or $695 per person

-Some people will qualify for exemptions from the penalty. You won't have to pay the fine if buying insurance would cost more than 8% of your income or if you don't make enough to file taxes

Follow 13WMAZ's Anita Oh on Twitter @anita_oh and on Facebook at Anita Oh WMAZ.


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