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Administration Announces Extension of March 31 Deadline for Obamacare

Date: March 27, 2014

Extension granted for those starting process before end of month

The Obama Administration announced on Wednesday that it would extend the March 31 deadline to enroll for health insurance for those who started the process before the deadline and were prevented from enrolling by the website’s flaws. Specifically, Americans in the 36 states served by the federal health insurance marketplace and who applied for new healthcare insurance by the March 31 deadline but were prevented from enrolling due to technical issues, will get an automatic extension to enroll in April. Users will reportedly be allowed to self-attest on the exchange site that they have attempted to enroll before the original deadline and are thus eligible for the extension.

What It Means for Small Business:

Sole proprietors who meet the criteria and still wish to sign up for insurance may be granted more time from the limited extension. On the other hand, the announcement has prompted more negative media coverage about all the uncertainty still hovering over Obamacare. Get all the facts about Obamacare at NFIB's Healthcare Playbook.

Further Reading:

FOX Business, Reuters, Bloomberg News, Politico, The Hill, the Daily Caller, and the Washington Times all had reports on the extension.

Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal editorialized that after the numerous delays and extensions, there is very little of the original law still intact. The Journal says that the delay is significant because HHS has repeatedly denied that there was any chance of the deadline being extended, to reverse itself at the last minute. Meanwhile, the new rules based on an honors system, the Journal says, are an invitation for enrollees to cheat the system.

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