Health insurance scam alert

Reported by: Erik Avanier
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Updated: 11/07/2013 6:45 pm
CHATTANOOGA, Tennessee(WDEF) - There are con artist who are pretending to be Affordable Health Insurance navigators or people who help register folks for Obamacare.

The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance has received reports of people pretending to be navigators or certified application counselors. The one thing the con artist have in common is telling unsuspecting people over the phone they need to pay to register for health insurance.

"They say that this is the cost of enrollment. If you give me your credit card information I'd be happy to run it and walk you through the process. That is an incredible red flag," said TDCI spokesperson, Kate Abernathy.

The truth is that navigator services are free and so is registration. Furthermore, navigators are not supposed to solicit services over the phone.

"We are not allowed to initiate any kind of phone calls, emails and text messages; only if a client or consumer gives us permission," said Erlanger CAC manager Katherlyn Geter.

Navigators and CAC's undergo criminal background checks before they receive their federal certification and their given a certification card to identify their legitimacy.

"So we recommend that Tennesseans whenever they do go to get the help of a navigator that they ask to see that federal certification," said Abernathy.

And once the certification card is shown, there are some specific things to pay close attention to.

"That person's name, their federal ID number, and that they have been completely certified to do CAC work," said Geter.

Any person seeking a navigator or CAC can also go on to the Affordable Healthcare website to locate Navigators and certified application councilors in their area.

"So all of us who are navigators and CAC's in Tennessee; if they've gone through the process, they should be listed on that website," Geter said.




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