Individual and Family
In most states, you can sign up for health insurance during the national open enrollment period. The national open enrollment period typically runs from November 1st through December 15th for health insurance starting the following year on January 1st. This means that open enrollment has ended in most states.
However, some states have permanently extended open enrollment. These states have permanently extended their open enrollment period to November 1, 2019 through January 31,2020 for health insurance coverage beginning in 2020:
Legislators in Colorado have permanently extended open enrollment, but it has since ended for the 2020 coverage year.
The open enrollment period for New York was extended for the 2020 coverage year to run from November 1, 2019 through January 31, 2020.
Other states that chose to extend their open enrollment periods for the 2020 coverage year included Massachusetts, Idaho, Minnesota, Washington, and Rhode Island.
It’s important to keep in mind that states with their own health insurance exchanges have the flexibility to extended open enrollment every year. You can learn more about the open enrollment dates in our break down of open enrollment dates by state.
You can still sign up for health insurance in 2020 for you and your family until January 31st 2020 if you live in California, Washington D.C., or New York.
Open enrollment has ended in all other states for the 2020 coverage year.
However, if you experience a qualifying life event – such as giving birth, losing your coverage through work, or moving outside of your coverage area – you can enroll in health insurance during a special enrollment period. Special enrollment periods typically last 60-days and allow you to enroll outside of open enrollment for health insurance in 2020 if you qualify.
If you don’t qualify for a special enrollment period and you make under 138% of the federal poverty line (FPL), you are likely to qualify for Medicaid. If you make over 138% of the FPL you are unlikely to qualify for Medicaid or other government health insurance programs unless you are pregnant, a child, or otherwise medically needy. Unlike major medical health insurance, there is no open enrollment date for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
The individual mandate tax has been repealed at the national level. In most states, you will not have to pay a fine for going uninsured in 2020.
However, there are some states that have chosen to implement an individual mandate tax at the state level. The states that have implemented an individual mandate tax are
To learn more, you can read more about states with an individual mandate tax in our more detailed article.
If open enrollment is over in your state, you may be able to apply for Affordable Care Act (ACA) compliant plans if you experience a qualify life event. Qualifying life events – such as moving outside of your coverage area, having a child, or losing coverage through work – typically trigger special enrollment periods. Special enrollment periods are 60-day periods where you can enroll in ACA-complaint health insurance.
If you do not qualify for a special enrollment period, you will not be able to enroll in ACA-compliant health insurance until the next special enrollment period.
In some states, you can enroll in short-term health insurance which may help provide you with coverage in worst-case-scenario situations if you are experiencing a lapse in coverage. However, short-term health insurance is not ACA-compliant and will not keep you from paying a tax penalty if you go uninsured in a state with an individual mandate tax penalty law in place.
According to eHealth’s “Half-Time” Report, the average cost of a monthly premium for 2020 health insurance coverage for an individual was $456. On average, premiums for individuals in 2020 are 4% less than they were for 2019 coverage.
According to eHealth’s “Half-Time” Report, the average cost of a monthly premium for 2020 health insurance coverage for a family was $1,134 as of November of 2019. On average, the cost of family premiums in 2020 declined 2%.
While most people do get their insurance from their employer, you can purchase health insurance on your own for yourself or your family. eHealth can help you find a plan that satisfies both your medical coverage and budgetary needs.
To start shopping for health insurance in 2020, enter your zip code below.