Californians may get until the middle of April to sign up for California Obamacare in hopes that the extended time will give the state a chance to reach their goals for sign-ups.
Next week Covered California officials will decide whether to extend the signup deadline until April 15. A penalty for not having insurance of $95 for 2014, or one percent of modified adjusted gross income, increases to $325 per adult, or two percent of income in 2015.
The executive director for Covered California, Peter Lee, suggested that synchronizing the health insurance deadline with income tax deadlines will hopefully motivate citizens to purchase the insurance. An April deadline would represent a second extension for California’s version of the Affordable Health Care.
Lee insists that deadlines are important, but argues for another extension, indicating that “this is the first year that taxes and health care go arm in arm.”
According to SFGate, officials hoped to enroll 1.7 million Californians by Sunday, which included re-enrolling about 1.2 million residents already signed up from last year. Moreover, Covered California hopes to add 500,000 new applicants.
California’s extensions fall in line with the rest of the country. Federal exchanges in 36 states offered some type of extension to increase participation.