Tag Archives: February 15th

Still Don’t Have Health Insurance? Don’t Worry!

Special Enrollment Period for Health Insurance

Even though the open enrollment period to invest in health insurance ended on February 15th, you still have a chance to enroll in a policy to ensure that you do not have to pay the fine. Covered California is offering a special enrollment period for those who were not aware of the tax penalty for not having health insurance in 2014, or learned that they may now face a fine in 2015.

The special enrollment period runs from now until April 30th, and gives people the chance to be covered with the right health insurance policy if they are not already. In order to qualify, you must prove that you were not aware of the penalty for not having health insurance by selecting the “Informed of Tax Penalty Risk” on the Covered California website.

Along with the new special enrollment period, there are other qualifying life events that can qualify you for a special enrollment period so that you can sign up for health care. Some of the most common qualifying life events include:

  • Getting married, entering into a domestic partnership, or getting a divorce.
  • Having a child, putting a child up for adoption, or adopting a child.
  • Moving your permanent residence to a different state that does not offer the same health plan that you are currently enrolled in.
  • Having a change in your income that effects your eligibility for cost sharing reductions or other government assistance.
  • Being a member of a federally recognized Alaska Native or American Indian tribe. If you fall into this category, you can change your health insurance plan, or enroll in a plan once a month.

Contact the insurance professionals at Integrity First Insurance in Thousand Oaks, California for all of your Conejo Valley health insurance coverage needs.

What Happens If I Miss Open Enrollment?

Your Next Steps After The Deadline Passes

February 15th is not just the day many people will wake up in a panic because they forget to do something special for their sweethearts on Valentine’s Day. It also marks the day that open enrollment ends. Under the Affordable Care Act, individuals and families have been able to secure healthcare in the marketplace since November 15th, 2014 and will be able to do so until the 15th of February. If you fail to secure coverage by that date, you have two options.

  1. Qualify For A Special Enrollment Period: If you have experienced major changes in your life (e.g. getting married or divorced, having or adopting a child, moving to a new state), you might be able to get an extension on your enrollment period. These qualifying life events or loss of coverage through your work can yield a sixty-day extension from the date of the qualifying life event.
  2. Pay The Penalty Fee & Secure Short Term Insurance: If you miss the open enrollment period and do not have a qualifying life event enabling you to secure an extension, you will face a penalty fee when you file your 2015 taxes. For 2015 the fee is 2% of your household income or $325 per adult ($162.50 per child), whichever is greater. You will not be able to secure a marketplace healthcare plan, but you may be able to secure short term insurance to save yourself from significant out of pocket expenses until the next open enrollment period begins.

Fortunately, you still have a little over a week to secure coverage before the upcoming open enrollment deadline! Contact Integrity First Insurance in Thousand Oaks, California for all of your Conejo Valley health insurance needs. Get started by securing a quick and easy quote today!