13 days left to sign up for healthcare or face fines; but do peo - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

13 days left to sign up for healthcare or face fines; but do people care?

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The clock is ticking for uninsured Americans who have yet to sign up for health care under the Affordable Care Act. March 3 is the deadline. After that, people who still have not signed up for health coverage could face a fine.

A new survey shows that many Americans have no intention to abide by the health insurance law. According to a Bankrate.com February 20- March 9 survey of 3,000 adults, more than half of them didn't know about the March 31 deadline. The survey also found that 34 percent of uninsured adults planned to remain uninsured and 70 percent of uninsured adults didn't know about the law's subsidies that are supposed to make health insurance more affordable. 

"I knew that there was a fine if you didn't sign up, but I definitely didn't know that the cut off date was coming up. I don't think that it's something many young people know," said Vianny Guevara, a student at UT Tyler. Even though Guevara is still covered under this parent's health insurance, he says he soon plans to take advantage of the benefits his employer offers.

Young people can stay on their parent's health insurance until they're 26 years old. That's likely why many students are not concerned about looming deadlines.

"I don't think I've ever had a conversation with anybody about healthcare... except for now I guess," said UT Tyler student Cullin Blackburn.

A 27-year-old Texas resident making about $25,000 a year can expect to pay between $90-$200 per month for health insurance, depending on what tax credits they're eligible for.

"If I didn't have my family, basically there's no way that I would be able to afford an extra $175 per month... which I guess is what the going rate is for Obamacare for people my age," said Jodi Alexander.

Alexander is still on her parent's health insurance, but she turns 27 in May. She says her parents will help her pay for a private insurance plan until she gets married in the fall and can be added to her husband's insurance plan. However, many of her friends aren't as fortunate.

"It is a concern. It's stressful. Everybody is just trying to get by as it is and make financial ends meet," Alexander says.

In total, about 5 million people have enrolled in a healthcare plan through the government's health insurance marketplace. People who choose not to sign up for a healthcare plan will be fined 1 percent of their income.

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