Short-term Insurance

Can I Still Get Health Insurance for 2019?

Updated on December 07, 2019


Open enrollment is over and many people are left wondering if they can still get health insurance for 2019.
There are a few circumstances under which you can still get health insurance this year, which include:

  • Experiencing a life event that qualifies you for a special enrollment period
  • Qualifying for Medicaid or CHIP
  • Applying for short term health insurance

Qualifying life events and special enrollment periods

There are some life events that you may experience that qualify you for special enrollment periods, which allow you to still get health insurance outside of the open enrollment period.

Some examples of qualifying life events include:

  • Changes in household – Some changes in household include marriage, divorce, death, or birth or adoption of a child
  • Changes in residence – A few examples of changes in residence include moving outside of your coverage area, moving to a new state, moving to or from where you’re attending college, or moving from a country to the US.
    *Note that vacationing or moving for only for medical treatment usually do not count as a qualifying life event and may not trigger a special enrollment period.
  • Loss of health insurance – A few instances in which you might lose health insurance include job loss, loss of eligibility for Medicaid or CHIP, or loss of coverage through a family member. Another example of this is when you turn 26 or are no longer a dependent which would make you ineligible to be covered through your parents.
  • Other changes – other life events that would allow you to still get health insurance after open enrollment would be becoming a US citizen, leaving incarceration, and starting/ending service as an AmeriCorps, VISTA, or NCC member.
    *Note that there are other complicated life events that may trigger a special enrollment period.

If you have one of these or another qualifying life event, you will be eligible to still get health insurance through a special enrollment period.

Keep in mind that you will have to be able to prove that you’ve experienced one of these life events.

Special enrollment periods usually last around 60 days. During that time, you are still able to get health insurance through your state’s market place, directly from an insurance company, or through an online broker – like eHealth!

Ehealth has plans that aren’t offered on government exchanges and allows you to compare coverage options side by side.

Medicaid or CHIP

Unlike other health insurance plans, Medicaid and CHIP do not have open enrollment periods. This means that you can still get health insurance through these government programs.

These programs provide free or low-cost health insurance for low-income individuals, families, children, pregnant women, elderly, and those with disabilities.

Note that Medicaid and CHIP may have different names in your state.

Even if you don’t think that you qualify for Medicaid or CHIP by income you should still apply. You may qualify if you have children, are pregnant, or have a disability. If you believe you might qualify for Medicaid or CHIP, make sure to visit their websites to see more details.

Short term health insurance

Even if you don’t qualify for Medicaid or CHIP and haven’t had a qualifying life event to trigger a special enrollment period, you still may be able to get health insurance.

Short term health insurance provides coverage for a short period of time – some plans last from a few months to a year depending on your state’s regulations – and they provide coverage fast with some plans approving your application as soon as next day.

This is a great option if you’re looking to fill gaps in coverage or get covered if you’ve missed the open enrollment period.

There is no open enrollment period for short term health insurance you can apply any time you may find yourself needing health insurance.

While there is no set list of standardized benefits like there is with Affordable Care Act (ACA) plans and you will not receive the same level of care as you would with a major medical plan, they do offer some coverage at lower monthly rates.

If you think short term health insurance is right for you, eHealth offers over 3,600 short term plans from more than 16 carriers that will keep you covered and help you save money. Get a quote from eHealth, today.

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