Health insurance open enrollment deadline is Monday

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Americans have just hours left to enroll for health insurance without getting penalized. Monday, March 31st marks the end to the six-month open enrollment period under the Affordable Care Act.

Some told 22News they think people haven’t enrolled for health insurance because they were holding out hope the Affordable Care Act would be overturned by now.

“In my honest opinion, and this is just my opinion, people who are benefiting from it are the hospitals,” said Cindy Michalski of Holyoke.

President Obama’s healthcare law hasn’t had a smooth start, but the White House announced recently it surpassed its goal of getting 6 million Americans to sign up.

However, there are still valid reasons to be exempt from mandatory health insurance without facing a penalty.

“I haven’t had the time to get health insurance and I’ve noticed that people keep talking about the penalty but most of the jobs I’ve had, I’ve already been below the poverty line,” said Christian Torres of Springfield.

According to, Americans are exempt if the lowest-priced coverage available costs more than 8 percent of their household income, or if they don’t file a tax return because their income is too low.

The website,, has had its share of problems. People who at least started enrollment will have until mid-April to complete the process without getting penalized.

For most everyone else without private insurance, the time to enroll is now.

“I have a son so he, I know I should have it. I have health insurance, so I don’t have to worry about it…But I feel if you’re a single person and you feel like you don’t need it, if you don’t go to the doctor’s enough to have to pay for it every month, I don’t think they should have to have it,” Jimmy Gagne of Ware told 22News.

You can find out how to sign up here.

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