With all of the controversy surrounding ObamaCare, understanding it can be pretty confusing and overwhelming.
To make it somewhat affordable, perhaps the most controversial part of the Affordable Care Act is about to go into effect.
By 2014 every American, with some very few exceptions, will have to have some form of health insurance or be fined.
What you need to know:
Open Enrollment: October 1, 2013-March 31, 2013
Beginning October 1, the government site Healthcare.gov will link you to where you sign up for the program. In the health insurance marketplace, plan and cost information will be available, but you do not have to sign up on October 1. The deadline is March 31.
You can also check to see if you are eligible for Medicaid, because many states are moving toward expanding who is eligible for the government-funded program that assists lower income families and individuals.
There are also certain exemptions from having to purchase healthcare including: inability to pay due to hardship, people who make so little they don't have to file a tax return, and people who are in this country without authorization.
Unless you already have insurance, if you miss the deadline and are not exempt from signing up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act, you will have to pay a fee. If you don't sign up to get insurance, you'll list that on your 2014 tax return.
The fee in 2014 is 1% of your yearly income or $95 per person for the year, whichever is higher. The fee increases every year.