Premiums in the individual market may increase up to 70% according to SC Insurance Director Ray Farmer.  How you will be affected depends on your age, medicval status and smoking status.

“Due to a number of new federal requirements going into effect next year as part of the Affordable Care Act, consumers should plan for premiums to increase significantly,” Farmer said in the prepared statement. “Overall, we expect to see average rates increase by 50 to 70 percent in the individual market and 10 to 20 percent in the small group market.”  Health plans now have to cover wellness, maternity, and all illnesses.  Plans are guaranteed issue and must cover all pre-existing conditions.

There will be four companies on the individual exchange, called the “marketplace” –  BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, Blue Choice Health Plan, Consumer’s Choice Health Insurance and Coventry Health Care of the Carolinas.  I will have more on each as I get certified to sell them.