ACA Open Enrollment Begins Nov. 1

Beginning Nov. 1, individuals will have the opportunity to change their current health plan, insurance carrier, or obtain coverage with the start of the annual Affordable Care Act (ACA) open enrollment period.

The open enrollment period ends Jan. 31, 2017, and will be the last chance individuals have to obtain or change their coverage for next year.  ACA-compliant plans are available on and off of the insurance exchanges during this time.  A qualifying event or special enrollment period will be required to obtain coverage outside of the open enrollment period.  Individuals without health coverage may be subject to a tax penalty under the ACA.

A plan’s effective date will depend on its date of purchase as noted below:

  • Sign up between Nov. 1, 2016 – Dec. 15, 2016: Coverage will begin Jan. 1, 2017
  • Sign up between Dec. 16, 2016 – Jan. 15, 2017: Coverage will begin Feb. 1, 2017
  • Sign up between Jan. 16, 2017 – Jan. 31, 2017: Coverage will begin March 1, 2017

Qualifying events allow individuals to apply for health coverage outside of open enrollment.  Examples of qualifying life events include:

  • Involuntary loss of coverage through employer plan
  • No longer a dependent
  • Marriage
  • Birth or adoption
  • Permanent move causing current plan to be involuntarily terminated

The special enrollment period generally gives you a 60-day time period in which to apply and obtain coverage on the individual market.

Do you need help determining your eligibility for coverage?  Contact a Caravus Individual Market consultant for more information.