The Coronavirus pandemic has had a dramatic health impact on Americans, in addition to leaving many unemployed and uninsured. As a result, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has reopened HealthCare.gov for a “Special Enrollment Period,” from February 15, 2021 – May 15, 2021. This Special Enrollment Period will give people who need health care coverage the chance to sign up. However, this gives scammers a new opportunity to call, email, and send letters and texts to try and get personal information.
Here are some things to know to help keep your money and personal information safe while getting the insurance coverage you need:
No one from the government will call you about health insurance or ask you to verify your Social Security number and financial information. People calling and posing as part of a government agency and organization who do ask for this type of information are scammers.
People who offer legitimate help with the Health Insurance Marketplace, sometimes called “Navigators” or “Assisters”, are not allowed to charge you for their help. If someone asks you for payment, it is a scam.
People representing Affordable Care Act plans will not contact you by phone, email, or in person unless you are already enrolled.
If you are planning to sign up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act, only do so at HealthCare.gov.
Suspect a scam? Let the FTC know at ReportFraud.ftc.gov. Your reports give them the information they need to launch investigations and put scammers out of business.
Stay connected to stay informed. Subscribe to consumer alerts from the FTC. When you do, you will get updates delivered right to your email inbox.
If you are interested in learning more about protecting yourself from health insurance scams, we encourage you to speak with a Community Resource Specialist by calling (408) 350-3200, option 1.