Now that the fourth open enrollment period has ended, in order for you to obtain health coverage outside Covered California’s open-enrollment period, you must have a life-changing event. And this is what is called special enrollment.
Covered California’s special-enrollment period started immediately after open enrollment period ended on Feb. 4 (the original Jan. 31 deadline was extended this year also) and will continue until open enrollment period for 2018 starts, which would be later this year in the fall.
According to Covered California officials, the state’s health insurance marketplace has begun new marketing focused on enrolling those who are eligible to sign up now due to changes in their life circumstances.
Special-enrollment marketing will include multicultural and multi-segment radio, digital and display advertising statewide.
Some of the most common life-changing events or circumstances included but at not limited to losing their health coverage from a job or Medi-Cal, getting married, having a child, or moving your place of residency.
However, for clarification in order for people that to qualify for special enrollment because of moving your place of residency, that means moving to California from another state or moving from one price region to another.
For example moving from Los Angeles to San Francisco you might qualify for special enrollment period. However if you moved homes from one neighborhood to another in the same city or price region, you won’t qualify for special enrollment.
Here is a short list of most common qualifying life events for special enrollment.
1. Losing health coverage. You are no longer eligible for Medi-Cal, or you lose health coverage through their job.
2. Turning 26 years old and are no longer eligible to stay on your parents’ plan.
3. Change in place of residency. This includes moving to California from another state. And according to Covered California this also applies to individuals who are released from jail or prison.
4. Having a child or adopting a child, receiving a child into foster care, or placing a child in adoption or in a foster home.
5. Getting married or entering into a domestic partnership.
Also, another thing to consider is that Covered California can also determine, on a case-by-case basis, that the individual experienced an exceptional circumstance, which could allow for a special enrollment period.
In most cases, consumers must report changes and select a plan within 60 days of the qualifying life event to purchase a Covered California health insurance plan outside of open enrollment.
For many qualifying life events, individuals can enroll online. They can also call the Covered California Service Center at (800) 300-1506. Service Center representatives can answer any questions consumers have about a qualifying life event and can help them enroll in or change health insurance plans.
Consumers can also get help from a Covered California certified enrollment counselor, Covered California certified insurance agent, certified plan based enroller, or county eligibility worker and visit www.coveredca.com where you can enroll online or get information about obtaining free, confidential in-person assistance in a variety of languages through the “Help on Demand” feature. Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.
And as a reminder Medi-Cal enrollment is year-round and you don’t need a special enrollment period to enroll in Medi-Cal if you qualify for it.
Covered California website has more information on special enrollment rules and you can visit at: www.CoveredCA.com/individuals-and-families/getting-covered/special-enrollment.
Vida en el Valle will go over some of the ABC’s of the Affordable Care Act to refresh your memory of some of the terms and bring you information of the health care reform.
If you have any questions regarding the health reform you can email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and will address those concerns in future editions.