Health Insurance open enrollment for 2016 closed on January 31, 2016.
Outside of Open Enrollment, you must have a qualifying event in order to purchase Affordable Care Act-compliant coverage which is effective in 2016.
Examples of Qualifying Events for Health Insurance
- Change in marital status (marriage/divorce/death of a spouse)
- Relocation to a new state
- Change in family size (birth/adoption/death of a child)
- Loss of minimum essential health coverage (change in employment status, cancellation of current coverage)
- Certain changes in income
- Expiration of COBRA
Qualifying Events Trigger a Special Enrollment Period
A qualifying event triggers a special enrollment period during which you can enroll in a health insurance plan outside of open enrollment.
Most special enrollment periods last 60 days. Be sure to act quickly if you have one of these events.
Proof of Qualifying Event
If you do have a qualifying event, you must have proof of the event. When applying for coverage, you will be asked to submit verification of the event and the date it occurred. Without verification, most carriers will not process the application.
If you have a qualifying event and you are eligible for a 2016 subsidy, then you must purchase coverage on your state’s health insurance exchange in order to collect the subsidy.
- Virginia residents can browse plans and apply for coverage using our expedited portal into the Federal Marketplace.
- Maryland residents must shop through the Maryland Health Connection.
- DC residents must shop on the DC exchange, known as DCHealthlink.
If you are not eligible for a subsidy, we can help you apply directly with these carriers:
What if You Don’t Have a Qualifying Event?
Absent a qualifying event, most individuals will not be able to purchase Affordable Care Act (ACA)-compliant health insurance coverage for 2016 after January 31. Instead, you will need to wait until next year’s open enrollment to buy coverage effective in 2017.
If you are concerned about being uninsured for the remainder of 2016, you may be able to secure short-term, temporary coverage as a bridge through the end of the year.
Temporary short-term plans are not ACA-compliant.
As such, short-term plans do not cover pre-existing conditions. However, you would be covered for any new illness or injury that arises. Although not ideal, a temporary plan is better than having no coverage at all.
We work with the following carriers to offer short term, temporary coverage and are happy to assist!
Virginia Medical Plans Can Help
If you have a qualifying event, let us know right away! We will help you find new coverage to best meet your needs.
Even without a qualifying event, if you do not have health insurance, give us a call. We may be able to help you secure temporary coverage, giving you peace of mind until 2017.
Give us a call at 703-707-8270.