Hey everyone. I think this is my first call for help diary since I joined Kos back in 2004. I hope the community can help me answer a few stupid questions about enrolling in the Affordable Care Act.

First off I am sorry I haven't been writing diaries since the election. I have been reading and "lurking" a lot just not really posting. A lot has been going on. I checked into the site tonight because of two very big things happening.

First and foremost we have this stupid Government Shutdown. Every time a Republican in the House speaks I face-palm. Partially because I can't believe how stupid these people are but also because the only time they make any sense to me is after suffering a slight trauma to my head.

Second we have open enrollment for Obamacare, and it's on that issue that I need some help. So if you're in mood to offer advice please follow me down below the cloud of Cheeto dust and see if you can answer my questions.

So one of the big things that has been going on with me since I wrote my last diary almost a year ago "An Open Letter to the GOP" and why I am interested in the Government Shut Down and the Obamacare enrollment is that I was fired on Friday.

Don't get me wrong, other big things have happened since November. But the most pressing right now is the whole feeling washed up and not having job thing. That sucks. I am not the type of person who likes to do nothing. Sure, now and then when I feel like I deserve a break I will take a few days and have some fun. But I can only enjoy that because I know I earned that time off and I am going right back to being a productive member of society after the fun is over.

Today I just feel useless. I feel like a failure.

My boss for the last 4 years decided to call it quits when another doctor offered to purchase his practice. Of course he will not be hiring on any of my bosses staff. He just wanted the patient records, the equipment and the elimination of near by competition.

Like a large portion of the uninsured people in this country I am a single man. I'm 32 years old and despite having worked lots of jobs ever since I was old enough have one, I have never had health insurance. None of my employers have ever once offered that as a benefit.

I live in California so I can enroll in Obamacare using the very handy marketplace website Covered California.

But I am not sure what to put for my annual income. Being recently let go I don't know if I am supposed to put what I have made in 2013 or what I expect to make next year. I have been reading everything I can find on both the Covered California site and the federal Healthcare.gov website. I can't seem to find anything on this. Last year I made just over $16,000 and I was on track to do so again this year but now I am unemployed.

Do I put the year-to-date as of my last pay stub?

Am I supposed to include unemployment benefits? I haven't gotten any yet, and I might not at all if the Government Shutdown goes on indefinitely. Did that "sequester" ever end? I stopped paying attention to that hot mess. Also since health coverage doesn't start until January of next year am I supposed to put my projected income for 2014? Because at the moment I feel like that's probably a big fat zero.

I am not optimistic. Last time I was unemployed it took me 10 months to find a real job. I worked some minimum wage, part time gigs here and there during that time period, but I was basically unemployed the whole time. It sucked. I am going to be pounding the pavement every chance I get to find a new job, but in the meantime I don't know what to do.

What happens if I enroll using one estimate, and then I get a really good paying job? Can I go back and change that? I have no idea how long I will be unemployed this time around, or how much I will make when I do finally find a job.

I suppose I can wait until January to see if things are clearer and easier then. I am not sure it will be. But either way I have gone this long without insurance I guess I can wait and hope I find a job between now and the end of Open Enrollment.

What bothers me is I am sure there must be somebody else out these in a similar situation who does in fact need to get signed up in a hurry. What information do they input in a situation like this? Personally I am mostly worried about committing insurance fraud if I fill this out wrong.

Any help or information would be very much appreciated.

Originally posted to DeanDemocrat on Tue Oct 01, 2013 at 09:37 AM PDT.

Also republished by Unemployment Chronicles.

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