Lillian Cheesman, an attorney from West Allis and member of Citizen Action of Wisconsin, applies for health insurance on Healthcare.gov. The open enrollment period ends Tuesday, Dec. 15. Cheesman's application took 15 minutes, and selecting her health insurance took another 15. (Photo by Jonathon Sadowski)
Lillian Cheesman, an attorney from West Allis and member of Citizen Action of Wisconsin, applies for health insurance on Healthcare.gov. The open enrollment period ends Tuesday, Dec. 15. Cheesman's application took 15 minutes, and selecting her health insurance took another 15. (Photo by Jonathon Sadowski)

It can take just a few minutes to sign up for health insurance.

Tuesday, Dec. 15, is the final day to apply for healthcare coverage through the Healthcare.gov marketplace.

If you haven’t applied yet, don’t stress out. Applying takes less than half an hour, even for securing coverage for multiple people. Here’s a checklist of everything needed.

First, create an account at Healthcare.gov, then follow the guided application steps.

“A lot of this is just very simple demographic information,” said Lillian Cheesman, 39, an attorney from West Allis and member of Citizen Action of Wisconsin who has gotten her health insurance from Healthcare.gov for several years.

The application process will ask for names, addresses, and social security numbers of everyone receiving coverage, as well as your estimated income for 2021. It will also ask for your primary care provider to help pick out the best health plan for you.

Cheesman allowed UpNorthNews to watch her apply for and select her healthcare plan for 2021. The application took about 15 minutes to complete—slightly faster because it had saved some of her information from past years—and about another 15 minutes to select health and dental coverage.

“I promise you, if you do the best with the information you have, you’ll be fine,” Cheesman said. “Don’t lie, don’t try to scam the system. It’s not worth it. The system is really meant to help people, so just try to answer the questions as honestly as possible.”

The Healthcare.gov marketplace can present many different plans, so Cheesman said it’s good practice to dedicate a few hours to researching the coverage options to figure out what’s best for you. Detailed information on every plan is available right on the selection website.

The website also displays the monthly cost of the plans.

Once you make your selection, you must pay your first month’s premium before coverage begins. The deadline to pay is Jan. 1.