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What Happens if You Missed the Open Enrollment Deadline?

Posted By on Jan 6, 2019 | 0 comments


Now that January first has come and gone, you might be getting started on your New Year’s resolutions. But what if you forgot to sign up for a health insurance plan during Open Enrollment? The deadline for coverage beginning January 1 was December 21… So what now? Are you going without health insurance for the next year?

No, you still have a chance to enroll for health insurance. The final deadline is January 15, for coverage that begins February 1. If you hurry, you can still get a health insurance plan in place beginning next month.

Otherwise, if you miss that deadline, then you might be out of luck until Open Enrollment begins in the fall. But under certain conditions, you could qualify for a Special Enrollment period. These conditions include, but are not limited to, these common circumstances:

    • You are eligible for Medi-Cal (in this case, you can sign up any time during the year)
    • You lose your current health insurance coverage, due to job loss or some other circumstance
    • COBRA coverage expires (unless it’s because you didn’t pay your premium)
    • You turn 26 years old, and can’t be covered under your parents plan anymore
    • Your student health coverage expires
    • You move and gain access to new plans
    • You are released from prison
    • You get married, divorced, or add a child to your family

If you do experience a qualifying event, please remember that you must apply for new coverage within 60 days of the event. Otherwise, you will miss the opportunity, and will have to wait until Open Enrollment begins on October 15 (for coverage beginning January 1, 2020).

What you apply for health insurance coverage, you will supply information related to your family size, income, home address. Based on these factors, you might qualify for a subsidy to help with the cost of your premiums.

If you need help enrolling in a health insurance plan, please contact us right away. We can also help you during the year, if you need to determine whether a situation qualifies you for a Special Enrollment period. If you’ve already enrolled, but know someone who hasn’t, please refer them to us! We can help get them enrolled before the deadline on January 15.