Did you just get married? Have a baby? Or have you lost your job and health insurance coverage? These are just a few of the “qualifying life events” that can make you eligible to purchase marketplace health coverage outside the official open enrollment period, which ended on Jan. 31 and doesn’t begin again until Nov. 1.
While so-called special enrollment periods offer an important opportunity to obtain health insurance coverage at critical times, the federal government recently tightened rules on what constitutes a ‘qualifying life event.” It’s intended to discourage people from waiting until they are sick to apply for marketplace health insurance coverage.
One of the biggest changes relates to moving to a different state. Several new rules apply to those seeking marketplace health insurance coverage after a move. For example, consumers must be ‘permanently’ moving to a new address outside the coverage area of their current health plan. “Individuals visiting an exchange service area for a transitory purpose, for example, to attend to a business matter, obtain medical care, or for personal pleasure, do not have a present intent to reside, and do not meet the residency requirement for marketplace coverage for the marketplace service area they are visiting,” the Department of Health and Human Services said in a memo.
What do all the changes mean to you? We can help you understand the new special enrollment period rules — and make sense of all of the changes coming to the world of health insurance. Our goal is to help you make informed choices that are right for you and your family. Call or visit us anytime if you have questions about your coverage.