Open Enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplace® is over, but for people with certain life-events, there are windows of time throughout the year in which you can still secure health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
These windows of time are called Special Enrollment Periods. This period takes into account significant life events that would require an individual to seek health insurance throughout the year.
The Health Insurance Special Enrollment Period
You qualify for a Special Enrollment Period for reasons including:
- Losing health coverage
- Moving from out of state
- Getting married
- Having a baby
- Adopting a child
The Special Enrollment Period will vary based on which event you experienced. The window for the special enrollment can begin as soon as 60 days before the qualifying event and can run until 60 days following the event. Understanding the time frame is extremely important, because if you miss the Special Enrollment Period window for which you qualify, you may have to wait until the next Open Enrollment Period to apply for health insurance.
There is another key date to keep in mind. Individual ACA plans only start on the first day of the following month. So if you don’t enroll by the last day of the month, you will have to wait an entire month before your policy is effective.
Affordable Health Insurance Help
Help is available to navigate the health insurance process during these Special Enrollment Periods. Insurance agent services are free to all consumers, and using an agent can save you time, money, and frustration. Agents can help you when you’ve experienced one of the qualifying life events. Plus, if you lose your job or have a cut in pay, an agent can help determine if you qualify for a Marketplace plan using a subsidy credit to help pay some or all of your premium.
As the leading health insurance broker in Charleston, the Benefit Concepts team provides options and solutions to help you make an informed decision that meets your health insurance needs regardless of the size of your family or organization.