COVERED CALIFORNIA HEALTH PLANS EXTEND PAYMENT DEADLINE TO JANUARY 15, 2014

coveredcaConsumers Given Nine Additional Days to Make Payment; Coverage Still Effective Starting Jan. 1, 2014

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Covered California’s eleven health insurance companies unanimously agreed Saturday to extend the deadline for consumers to submit payment for their first month’s premium.

Consumers now have until Jan. 15, 2014 to make payment to the companies. The nine additional days will ease feelings consumers may have of being rushed to pay the invoices they recently received.

The extension also assures health insurance companies time to mail the invoices and for consumers to have received the documents. Payment for coverage taking effect Jan. 1 must be in the hands of the health insurance companies by Jan. 15 and not simply postmarked or in-transit.

Meanwhile, about 200,000 households with coverage due to take effect Jan. 1, and who supplied their email addresses to Covered California, will receive direct notification about the payment deadline extension. Consumers can also visit www.CoveredCA.com  for instructions on how to pay their premium.

Health insurance companies stress that this is a one-time payment deadline extension, and that payment for coverage is due at the beginning of each month.

About Covered California

Covered California is the state’s marketplace for the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Covered California, in partnership with the California Department of Health Care Services, was charged with creating a new health insurance marketplace in which individuals and small businesses can get access to affordable health insurance plans. With coverage starting in 2014, Covered California helps individuals determine whether they are eligible for premium assistance that is available on a sliding-scale basis to reduce insurance costs or whether they are eligible for low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for their health needs and budget. Small businesses can purchase competitively priced health insurance plans and offer their employees the ability to choose from an array of plans and may qualify for federal tax credits.

Covered California is an independent part of the state government whose job is to make the new market work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the Governor and the Legislature. For more information on Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.

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