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Insurance agents can't answer questions regarding new changes to - KOAM TV 7

Insurance agents can't answer questions regarding new changes to healthcare law

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Local insurance agents are among the many trying to understand another change to President Obama's new healthcare law.  The President announced this week he will allow Americans to keep their old insurance plans that were automatically canceled by the new healthcare law.

"You go to your insurance agent to find out about insurance.  If your car breaks down, you go to your mechanic," says Allstate insurance agent Loretta Bailey.

The "good hands" at Allstate are trying to reach for answers, though.

"It's an embarrassment, I think, to the insurance industry," says Bailey.

Insurance agents with other companies say the same.  They don't have answers to questions like those of Joplin resident Jim Wilkilson.

"How does he, willy-nilly, pick part of the law he likes, and cancel out the part he doesn't like?  I mean, how does that work?  I thought the law was the law," says Wilkilson.

Insurance companies say President Obama's new healthcare law was too strict on some insurance policies, so they were no longer offered.  

The President now says people can keep their original healthcare plans, if they were canceled because of the new healthcare law.

But insurance agent Bailey asks,"We get to keep it, but at what price do we get to keep it?"

There's no answer yet from the government or insurance agents like Bailey.

"I called my people, my underwriters, and I had a lady who said Loretta, I've been doing this for 25 years.  This is the first time I don't have an answer,' says Bailey.

What's the process of getting an old insurance plan back?  Will the insurance company contact people, or will that be up to the insured?

"I can't go get the answers.  I mean, I've tried," says Bailey.

Insurance agents say basic questions are being left unanswered by the federal government.  For the time being, a new healthcare system that's been plagued with problems so far has yet to settle down.

"I think he's (President Obama) just trying to gain the respect of the American people back," says Webb City resident Lori Venable.

But some Americans, including Venable, are already saying President Obama's latest attempted compromise has turned against him.

Too little, too late.

Americans will be allowed to keep their old healthcare plans for one year.  Insurance agents say it might be some time before this latest change to the healthcare law is fully understood and implemented.  Watch the associated video for details.

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