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Getting the Coverage You Need

Open enrollment is the period each year when health insurance plans or聽HMOs (health maintenance organizations)聽are required by law to accept applications from聽new plan聽enrollees regardless of their health history. This also is the time when you can choose to stay with your existing health plan for the coming year if it still meets your needs. Open enrollment dates vary, depending on the state you live in and whether you get your coverage from your employer, an ACA Marketplace, or another source 鈥 but for many people, open enrollment takes place annually in the fall.

If you get insurance through your job, check with your human resources department to find out when your company鈥檚 open enrollment period begins and ends. If you get your health insurance through the ACA Marketplace, open enrollment deadlines have been extended. Check聽here聽for your state’s deadlines.

REVIEW YOUR HEALTH COVERAGE: Recent Federal Law Lowers Costs, Opens Up New Options

For people with聽Medicare聽coverage, open enrollment runs from聽Oct. 15 鈥 Dec. 7, annually.聽The open enrollment period for聽Medicaid聽is 365 days a year, available to those who need it, whenever that occurs.

What About the ACA?

You may have heard there is a case currently pending in the Supreme Court that concerns the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. While this lawsuit is highly concerning (you can read more about it here), please know that the case does not affect your coverage or your protections, today or for your 2021 plan options. The ACA remains the law of the land for now. Furthermore, if you sign up for a health insurance policy during open enrollment, your policy will remain in effect through 2021 even if the Supreme Court (in a worst-case scenario) were to overturn the ACA.

Be an Active Participant

As you consider your insurance options,聽READ YOUR POLICY. This is critical because the health insurance plan you choose will be yours for 12 months unless you have a聽qualifying life event聽that allows you to switch plans.


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