- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 19, 2015

Uninsured Vermonters who realize they must pay a special tax for lacking health insurance in 2014 can enroll in the state’s health exchange even though they missed Obamacare’s signup deadline, the state announced Thursday, making it the third state to extend relief to penalty payers.

Vermont Health Connect said filers who are blindsided by the law’s “individual mandate” can apply for a special enrollment period by calling the exchange’s hotline. They must enroll within 60 days of realizing they owe a penalty payment, or by May 31 at the latest.

“Our goal is to help as many Vermonters find quality health coverage as possible,” said Lawrence Miller, chief of health care reform. “When our federal partners expressed an openness to providing this enrollment flexibility, we jumped at the opportunity.”

Already, state-run exchanges in Washington state and Minnesota announced enrollment opportunities for those who missed Obamacare’s deadline Sunday.

The Health and Human Services Department is mulling whether to offer similar relief to customers in 37 states that rely on the federal exchange known as HealthCare.gov.

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