Health care’s drop-dead date: March 31

The Seattle TimesJanuary 17, 2014 

The Washington Healthplanfinder site is the online portal for Washington state's health care insurance marketplace.

If your senses are getting numbed by Obamacare’s endless deadline drumbeat, let us direct your attention to arguably the most important date of all: March 31, 2014.

March 31 is important not only because it’s the deadline for getting coverage in order to avoid penalties for being uninsured. It’s also the end of this round of open enrollment, meaning it’s your last chance this year for getting insurance coverage as an individual (though of course there are exceptions that will allow you to get individual coverage later in the year, exceptions such as getting a divorce or losing a job that had benefits).

But just as you don’t have to wait for April 15 to file your income taxes, you likewise don’t have to delay signing up health insurance until March 31. Anytime between now and then you can enroll through the state insurance exchange, Washington Healthplanfinder, where you might qualify for subsidized coverage, or you can buy insurance outside of the exchange through brokers or directly from insurance companies.

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