Consumers to Wait for Insurance Marketplace Rates

This application obtained by The Associated Press shows the short form for the new federal Affordable Care Act. (AP Photo/J. David Ake)

CHICAGO (AP) -- Illinois residents planning to shop for health insurance on a new online marketplace won't know which companies will offer plans or what the policies will cost until it opens Oct. 1.

Federal officials told Illinois community groups and insurance brokers on a conference call this week that prices won't be made public until then but didn't say why. The marketplace is a key part of the Obama administration's health care law.

More than a dozen states have released prices for their marketplaces, but Washington is controlling most of the important aspects of Illinois' marketplace, including the release of the price data.

Insurance brokers in Illinois say the uncertainty is causing frustration among small business owners and self-employed people, who want to plan for their health care costs in 2014.

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