how to enroll

navigating health insurance

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how to enroll

navigating health insurance

How and when can you enroll in a health insurance plan? Well, that depends on a variety of variables. Let’s dive in.

what's in this lesson?

How and when can you enroll in a health insurance plan? Well, that depends on a variety of variables. Let’s dive in.

overview

What is “Open Enrollment”?

 

Open enrollment refers to the time of the year in which the public can sign up for health insurance coverage through one of the online exchanges. There are Open Enrollment periods for both employer-sponsored insurance and on the insurance exchanges.

 

Open Enrollment on the Exchanges

 

On the exchanges (for more info on the exchanges, check out lesson 3: where you get health insurance), open enrollment is once per year (Generally November – December) unless you have a qualifying life event (lost your job, your spouse, etc–see a list of qualifying events below in our resources). As 2021 open enrollment is approaching, here’s how you can enroll if you don’t have employer-sponsored health insurance:

 

As of November 1, you can log in to the exchange at HealthCare.gov, fill out an application, and enroll in a health insurance plan for 2021– the process is entirely online and your coverage will last the whole year. The deadline to enroll is December 15th nationally, but some states have extended their enrollment deadline–check out the resources tab for more information.

 

Open Enrollment with Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance

 

For those with employer-sponsored health insurance, you have a window after you’re hired that counts as a qualifying life event. DON’T MISS THIS WINDOW or else you’ll be on your own. Your employer will then have open enrollment for a new plan every year when you can add/change your current coverage. They’ll let you know when it’s the right time to sign up.

 

Other Ways to Enroll

 

If you’re married, you can generally enroll on your spouse’s plan (a wedding counts as a qualifying life event, or you can enroll during the open enrollment period at the company).

 

If you’re under the age of 26, you can be added to your parents’ plan. Upon your 26th birthday, you are eligible to enroll on the exchange (your 26th birthday is a qualifying life event).

 

One more scenario to cover: if you leave or lose your job, you’re eligible for COBRA, which is a law that allows you to pay your former employer to keep you on their plan for several months. This route can often be expensive, but, depending on your medical needs, it might be the right one for you.

 

Source(s): healthcare.gov, Medical Mutual

overview

What is “Open Enrollment”?

 

Open enrollment refers to the time of the year in which the public can sign up for health insurance coverage through one of the online exchanges. There are Open Enrollment periods for both employer-sponsored insurance and on the insurance exchanges.

 

Open Enrollment on the Exchanges

 

On the exchanges (for more info on the exchanges, check out lesson 3: where you get health insurance), open enrollment is once per year (Generally November – December) unless you have a qualifying life event (lost your job, your spouse, etc–see a list of qualifying events below in our resources). As 2021 open enrollment is approaching, here’s how you can enroll if you don’t have employer-sponsored health insurance:

 

As of November 1, you can log in to the exchange at HealthCare.gov, fill out an application, and enroll in a health insurance plan for 2021– the process is entirely online and your coverage will last the whole year. The deadline to enroll is December 15th nationally, but some states have extended their enrollment deadline–check out the resources tab for more information.

 

Open Enrollment with Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance

 

For those with employer-sponsored health insurance, you have a window after you’re hired that counts as a qualifying life event. DON’T MISS THIS WINDOW or else you’ll be on your own. Your employer will then have open enrollment for a new plan every year when you can add/change your current coverage. They’ll let you know when it’s the right time to sign up.

 

Other Ways to Enroll

 

If you’re married, you can generally enroll on your spouse’s plan (a wedding counts as a qualifying life event, or you can enroll during the open enrollment period at the company).

 

If you’re under the age of 26, you can be added to your parents’ plan. Upon your 26th birthday, you are eligible to enroll on the exchange (your 26th birthday is a qualifying life event).

 

One more scenario to cover: if you leave or lose your job, you’re eligible for COBRA, which is a law that allows you to pay your former employer to keep you on their plan for several months. This route can often be expensive, but, depending on your medical needs, it might be the right one for you.

 

Source(s): healthcare.gov, Medical Mutual

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