Health insurance industry says consumers have until Jan. 10 to pay first premium - InfoNews

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Health insurance industry says consumers have until Jan. 10 to pay first premium

FILE - In this Dec. 11, 2013, file photo, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, before the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on the implementation failures of the Affordable Care Act. Consumers worried that tight deadlines around the holidays and lingering computer problems could thwart their efforts to secure coverage under President Barack Obama's health overhaul will get extra time to pay, the health insurance industry said Wednesday, Dec. 18. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)
December 18, 2013 - 9:31 AM

WASHINGTON - The health insurance industry says consumers will get an extra 10 days to pay their first month's premium under President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.

With tight deadlines around the holidays, plus lingering problems with federal and state sign-up systems, the voluntary decision Wednesday by the board of America's Health Insurance Plans does more than give extra time:

It also reduces the risk that consumers switching plans could suffer an interruption in coverage due to technology woes.

Consumers still must select a plan by Dec. 23 — next Monday. But instead of having to pay their first month's premium by New Year's Eve, they now have until Jan. 10. That would let them get coverage retroactive to Jan. 1.

The industry trade group represents about 90 per cent of health insurers.

News from © The Associated Press, 2013
The Associated Press

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