Enrolling in a health insurance plan is something you do every year. Some people enroll through their employer and others may shop for individual plans online. The period of time during which people are able to sign up for health insurance coverage or change their coverage status is called open enrollment. This period of time only happens once a year, unless an individual experiences a qualifying event, which is the subject of today’s post.
A qualifying event is an event such as death, marriage, divorce, loss of employment or birth of a child that would allow enrollment in a health plan without having to wait for an open enrollment period. This period of time outside of open enrollment is sometimes referred to as a special enrollment period.
When it comes to actually making changes to your health insurance plan, just give your health insurer a call to get started. BCBSKS members can get started by visiting our website. If your insurance is through your employer, check with your HR department to learn the steps you’ll need to take.
The chart below outlines some common events that may or may not allow you to enroll in a new health insurance plan.
If you want to make changes to your health insurance, but don’t have a qualifying event, you’ll have to wait until the next open enrollment period to make changes. Open enrollment for individual coverage in 2016 begins Nov. 1, 2015 and ends Jan. 31, 2016,