What is Obamacare and the Affordable Care Act?
Obamacare is the shorthand name for the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA), which was signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2010.
This wide-reaching law does many things, but most significantly it:
- protects consumers -- for example, by requiring insurance companies to cover people with pre-existing conditions and preventing them from arbitrarily canceling your coverage
- requires most U.S. citizens and legal residents to have health insurance or, if they don't, to pay a tax penalty
- allows states to expand Medicaid coverage
- creates marketplaces (sometimes called "exchanges") for affordable health insurance plans, and
- establishes new funding for public health and prevention.
As a result of the law, new health plans will be available for individuals, families, and small businesses. You can compare plans and providers, and choose the coverage that’s best for you.
At ObamacareByZipCode, we focus on helping you understand how Obamacare works in Illinois, to help you get the coverage you need.
Here are some topics that answer frequently asked questions about Obamacare.