Affordable Care Act
Updated April, 30 2019.
The Affordable Care Act (the law known commonly as the ACA or Obamacare) created a nationwide open enrollment period.
Here is a list of the 2019 open enrollment dates listed by state.
Keep in mind that if your state runs its own Marketplace, your enrollment period may be different. Check to see if your state has an extended enrollment period here.
During open enrollment anyone can purchase individual and family health insurance on their own. But can you get coverage outside open enrollment?
However, if you experience a major life-changing event (termed a “qualifying life event” under the law), you may be eligible for a personal special enrollment period outside of open enrollment.
Qualifying life events that may trigger a special enrollment period for yourself and your family outside of open enrollment include the following:
Be aware that you may need to provide documentation showing that you experienced one of these (or other) qualifying life events in order to purchase a major medical plan outside of open enrollment.
If you experience a qualifying life event, you will typically have a sixty-day window during which you can enroll in a major medical plan outside of open enrollment and apply for Obamacare subsidies if you meet the income criteria.
Outside the open enrollment period, you can only purchase Obamacare-compliant health insurance if you experience a qualifying life event. However, even if you can’t get an Obamacare-compliant health insurance plan, there are supplemental insurance products available that can offer some level of protection. Although they will not meet your coverage requirements under the Affordable Care Act, and you may still be subject to a tax penalty depending on where you live (the individual mandate penalty no longer applies in 2019, but some states have their own health insurance penalties), this level of protection may still be better than having no coverage at all.
Some alternate forms of coverage may include, but are not limited to, the following:
An eHealth analysis identifies average monthly prices for supplemental insurance and other products often included in medical insurance packages.
In eHealth’s analysis reports the following average monthly premiums:
These prices are only historical averages from eHealth products in 2017 and may not reflect the prices or plans available for your specific circumstances.
The average premiums for eHealth customers shopping for short-term coverage were $113 for individuals, $277 for families during the 2019 open enrollment period.
Whether you’re looking for coverage outside of open enrollment during a special enrollment period or are looking for supplemental insurance you can find coverage through eHealth.
To get help finding the right plan for you, enter your zip code where requested on this page to see a quote.