How to Shop the Health Insurance Marketplace

Feel confident choosing the coverage you need at a price you may be able to afford.

What is the Marketplace?

The Maine Health Insurance Marketplace, or Exchange, is an online shopping center for health insurance. It’s where to go to apply for coverage, find out if you qualify for savings, and make changes to your health plan.

Visit the Marketplace to find out if your state uses the federal Marketplace or a state based Marketplace.

If your employer offers health insurance coverage, they may have a website where you can shop for plans. This is called a “private exchange,” and it’s different from the Federal or State Marketplaces.

The Marketplace makes it possible to find health care coverage that meets your needs and budget.

During the Open Enrollment Period, you can view, compare, and apply for individual medical plans online directly. You can also see if you are eligible for federal financial assistance and apply that assistance to your health insurance plan.

Who shops on the Marketplace?

If you and your family don’t have health insurance coverage through your job, you can choose a health plan from the Marketplace and pay for it on your own. If you are self-employed or unemployed, the Marketplace is a place to go for health coverage.

If your employer offers health insurance coverage, you can still shop the Marketplace, but you will pay full price for your plan. Everyone who shops the health insurance Marketplace must be a U.S. citizen and live in the United States. If you qualify for Medicare, you are not eligible to shop the Marketplace. People who are incarcerated are also not eligible.

When can I buy a plan on the Marketplace?

You can shop for health insurance during Open Enrollment or a Special Enrollment Period. The 2021 Open Enrollment period starts November 1, 2020 and ends December 15, 2020.

A Special Enrollment Period is open to people for 60 days after certain life changes such as moving, getting married or having a baby.

What kinds of health insurance plans are available on the Marketplace?

There are three levels of health plans that you can buy on the Maine Health Insurance Marketplace: Bronze, Silver, and Gold. (“Catastrophic” plans are available to people under 30.) Each level pays a different portion of your health care costs.

You will also pay a portion of your health care expenses through your monthly premium, copays, deductible, and coinsurance. The amount you pay depends on your plan.

The right plan to choose will depend on many factors, which vary from one person to another.

Get more advice on how to get the right coverage

Can I get financial assistance?

Depending on your annual household income and the number of people in your family, you may qualify for federal financial assistance to help you pay for health insurance. Financial assistance can lower the cost of your monthly premium, the amount you pay when you get care, or both.

When to pay your first premium

Important: You must pay your first premium for your coverage to start. To make sure your coverage starts, you need to pay your first premium. Your first premium payment is known as a “binding payment.” That means your health insurance coverage will be canceled if you don’t make a payment by January 1st! Once you…

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How to estimate household income for your marketplace application.

When you fill out your Maine Health Insurance Marketplace application, you’ll need to look into your crystal ball and estimate what your household income is likely to be for the coming year. Marketplace savings are based on your expected household income for the year you want coverage, not last year’s income. You must make your best…

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New HSA Limits for 2021

The IRS has announced higher health savings account (HSA) contribution limits for the 2021 tax year. Starting January 1, 2021, you can save even more and boost your financial well-being in retirement. The 2021 maximum HSA contributions are: $3,600 Individual – $50 increase from 2020$7,200 Family – $100 increase from 2020Additional $1,000 Catch-up contributions if…

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6 Benefits of choosing an HSA plan

A health savings account can help you lower your taxes and pay for health care expenses tax free! HSA plans in Maine are only available with high-deductible health plans. You can use HSA funds to pay for eligible health care expenses and for out-of-pocket costs your health plan doesn’t cover. 1. Save on taxes Your…

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Quick Form – Update your e-mail settings in your Marketplace Application

Fill out the form below and we will update your email settings in your Maine Health Insurance Marketplace Application. You may use this form as often as you like to update your email preferences.


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Quick Form – Update Income for Marketplace Application

Fill out the form below and we will update your income on your Maine Health Insurance Marketplace Application for 2021. You may use this form as often as you like to update any income changes during the year.


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