Special Enrollment – Outside of Covered California Open Enrollment

by Holly Davies
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If you missed the first Open Enrollment for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), you may be eligible for Special Enrollment if you experience a ‘qualifying life event’.  A Special Enrollment period allows you to enroll during the 60 days following your qualifying event. This way you will not be required to wait until the next Open Enrollment period, like the one that begins on November 15, 2014.

A ‘qualifying life event’ is a change in your life that allows you to enroll in a health insurance plan. Your qualifying life event could be that you got married/divorced, you had a baby, you lost your plan through your employer or you simply moved to or within California.  Let’s look closer at some of the most common situations:

  • You entered into or ended a marriage or domestic partnership.
  • You had a child, adopted a child, you are fostering a child in your home or you place your child in adoption or foster care.
  • Your coverage under your parents ended because you turned 26 or they lost the coverage you were on.
  • You lost your health coverage through your job, Cobra, Medi-Cal or school.
  • Your income went down and you are now eligible for assistance to help you buy your insurance.
  • You returned from active duty in the military
  • You moved to or within the state of California, and gain access to at least one new Covered California health insurance plan.
  • You became a citizen, national or lawfully present individual
  • You are a federally recognized American Indian or Alaskan Native.
  • You were released from jail or prison.

Less common life events may include your status with AmeriCorps changed or you received a court order to provide health insurance for a child. There are plenty of reasons that could apply to your situation and allow you to enroll in affordable health insurance. It may sound overwhelming but don’t worry, Covered CA created a video so you can hear Special Enrollment explained. If you are not sure, that’s ok; we will talk through your specific situation with you.

How Do I Enroll?

Start with a quote on HealthForCalifornia.com. A
Covered California quote will provide you with plan details and your estimated monthly rates for each available plan. If you are eligible for a subsidy, this amount will be displayed and also subtracted so you can see the price you pay.  From your quote you will choose a plan and click the button that says ‘Apply Now’.  Your application page will display with the plan you selected, then you will select your enrollment reason and complete all the fields on the page. Then you type your name in the signature box and click ‘Submit Application’. We will send you an email when the enrollment process is complete. Keep an eye out for this, it will provide important information and payment instructions.”

What Do I Need To Know?
  • You must apply within 60 days or you will have to wait until Open Enrollment in the fall. Start early so you can go through the process without rushing.
  • Apply by the 15th of the month in order to have your coverage begin on the 1st of the next month.
  • Apply any time of the year if you are eligible for Medi-Cal or if you are an American Indian or Alaskan Native.

It’s also good to know we are just a phone call away, Monday through Friday at 1-877-752-4737

Posted: August 22nd, 2014 under Apply with Covered California