Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - Despite months of ups and downs, the first MNsure deadline has passed and thousands of Minnesotan's are now enrolled in healthcare coverage required by the Affordable Care Act.
While the deadline for January 1st coverage has passed, you still have until the spring to sign up for a health insurance plan for 2014 before tax penalties begin.
Right now, 53,000 Minnesotan's have enrolled in healthcare coverage through MNsure that began at midnight Wednesday.
If you weren't able to enroll by Tuesday's initial deadline, open enrollment is available on an ongoing basis through March 31.
Navigators with insureDuluth say if you miss the final March deadline, options to enroll through the state exchange are limited for a qualified health plan.
"Outside of that March 31st, that's essentially like any employers open enrollment period, it's done. There's options potentially meeting with a broker talking about something outside of the exchange. If you're eligible for a public program, that can happen at anytime, so there's no open enrollment period for medical assistance or Minnesota Care."
If you still have not enrolled in a private healthcare plan by March 31st, that's when tax penalties will begin, beginning with your 2014 tax return. The first year penalty for most uninsured American's will be around $98.
Penalties will increase significantly after the first year, in 2015 those still without coverage can expect a fee of $325 per person.