Special Enrollment Period

What is special enrollment?

Special enrollment is a 60-day period following a major life change when you can enroll in a new health plan or make changes to your coverage. (See “How can I qualify…” below for examples of qualifying life changes.) You can apply for special enrollment anytime during the year.

How is special enrollment different from open enrollment?

Open enrollment happens from November 1 through January 31 each year. In general, this is the only time when individuals who purchase their own insurance (because they’re not eligible for group coverage, Medicaid, or Medicare) can apply for coverage, or make changes to their coverage. The exception is if you have a major life change and qualify for special enrollment (see above).

How can I qualify for special enrollment?

You can qualify for special enrollment if any of these major life changes apply to you:

  • Legal separation or divorce
  • Marriage
  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • Death of a spouse
  • Job loss (you or a spouse)
  • COBRA benefits exhausted
  • Loss of coverage under your parents’ health plan

However, you won’t qualify for special enrollment if you voluntarily choose to end your existing insurance coverage. You would have to wait until the next year’s open enrollment period to enroll in a new health plan.

When does special enrollment end?

Special enrollment ends 60 days after your qualifying life change happens.

Questions? We’re here to help.

Have questions or want to talk about your options? Give us a call toll-free at 1-855-690-2583. Or, stop by one of our three Your Blue Store℠ locations.