It's almost November, and that means it's time for open enrollment. For those wondering when healthcare open enrollment 2020 is, it starts on 1st November and ends on 15th December. However, some states have set other deadlines: California, DC, and Colorado.
Here are five things you should know before the six-week period comes along soon:
1. Special Enrollment Period
You may miss out on the open enrollment in the next six weeks. Not to worry, you might still have a chance to apply for coverage even after that. Through the special enrollment period, individuals who miss out on the open enrollment still have an opportunity to get insurance cover. However, they must prove that they were previously unable to apply because of exceptional circumstances like marriage or divorce. Losing coverage, moving addresses, and having a kid are also some reasons that are recognized.
2. Required Documentation
For proper preparation, there are a few things you need to have in place. Firstly, you must have social security numbers for everyone who will be on the plan. Secondly, you must also provide tax information and the health coverage information that you have from 2019. Thirdly, you should provide extensive details regarding dependents on the plan. You must also consider any new developments that you expect in the near future, for instance, having kids.
3. Shorter Enrollment Period
As it was in 2019, the healthcare open enrollment 2020 will have a short period of just six weeks. The reasoning behind that decision is to ensure that everyone acquires insurance for the whole year starting 1st January. A sick person is at a disadvantage with a more extended period as he or she may not be covered for some time. A shorter period is becoming the norm to avoid such scenarios.
4. If Your Employer Already Provides Insurance
Some people may be wondering what happens if their employer is already providing insurance. For one, the enrollment period might be different. The above information is in regards to the individual marketplace, and employers often have a separate process. However, most try and provide coverage before January 1st. If your employer offers choices, make sure to look through them before making a decision. Also, take note of the premiums that you'll be paying.
5. No Penalties for Lack of Insurance
Finally, it is important to know the repercussions of failing to acquire insurance for 2020. In the past, the federal government fined such individuals. Currently, there are no such penalties. While you can now go without coverage, it's not recommended. Healthcare emergencies can arise at any time, and you don't want to face those without coverage. It is imperative to note that while the federal government doesn't impose penalties anymore, some states may do so.
The next six weeks after 1st November are critical. Shop around for the best alternatives that you can get. While there is no federal penalty for failing to acquire coverage, it isn't in your best interest. For those who qualify for Medicare, you can sign up through our site here, and find the best plan for you.