Open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act (“ACA” or “Obamacare”) began on Nov 1 and will continue nine more days through Dec 15. With hopes of exploiting the public’s interest in finding the best deals for (a) Medicare, (b) a plan through the ACA, or (c) through private insurance, scammers will try to take advantage of consumers. Below we’ve listed some red flags to raise suspicions:
- There are no Medicare sales agents. If someone contacts you claiming to be an “official Medicare agent,” it’s a scam.
- Plan D, the Medicare subscription drug plan, is voluntary. If anyone tells you that it is required or threatens that you’ll lose coverage if you don’t purchase it – it’s a scam.
- If anyone says that you must give any information over the phone for your coverage to continue, it’s a scam.
Affordable Care Act
- Only shop for your plan through www.healthcare.gov. Those that offer opportunities to sign up elsewhere could be scammers.
- If you are feeling uncertain about the process and not sure how to purchase the correct plan, use your local help resource at Healtcare.gov. It’s free.
If you are looking to buy private insurance, be sure that the insurance plan you want is what you’re actually purchasing. Some plans claim to be something they are not. Your state insurance commissioner office can inform you on whether or not the plan you chose is really an insurance plan.
If you think you’ve identified a scam, report it to the Fair Trade Commission (“FTC”). If it’s a Medicare scam, you can report it www.medicare.gov. As always, if you have any questions regarding any consumer issues or any other legal issue, please contact us.