Late Enrollee's | Qualifying Events

Open enrollment ended, can I still get health insurance in TN?

Open enrollment closes on February 15, 2016 and will not reopen until November 1st for a January 1, 2017 effective date. There are several ways you can still get health insurance coverage; Qualify for a special enrollment period, buy a short-term policy, apply for Medicaid or CoverKids. 

Apply with a Special Enrollment Period

You can apply for coverage with an individual policy or through the Marketplace for subsidized care ONLY if you have a qualifying life event or a complex situation related to the Marketplace

Qualifying life events protect you when life happens and you lose your current insurance coverage through no fault of your own. You have 30 days to enroll from the date of your "life event". Here are some examples; 

  • Marriage, having a baby, adopting a child or placing a child for adoption or foster care, moving your residence, gaining citizenship, leaving incarceration
  • Losing other health coverage”due to losing job-based coverage, divorce, the end of an individual policy plan year in 2016, COBRA expiration, aging off a parent's plan, losing eligibility for Medicaid or CHIP, and similar circumstances. Important: Voluntarily ending coverage doesn't qualify you for a special enrollment period. Neither does losing coverage that doesn't qualify as minimum essential coverage.
  • For people already enrolled in Marketplace coverage: Having a change in income or household status that affects eligibility for premium tax credits or cost-sharing reductions
  • Gaining status as member of an Indian tribe. Members of federally recognized Indian tribes can sign up for or change plans once per month throughout the year
  • Ready to enroll - apply? Click here


The penalty for not having health insurance

If you don't have health coverage that qualifies as minimum essential coverage, you must either pay a fee or get an exemption from paying the fee.

Your fee is calculated one of 2 ways. You'll pay the higher of these amounts for 2016:

  • 2.5% of your income; OR
  • $695 per adult ($347.50 per child; family maximum $2,085)

If you're uncovered for only part of the year, you owe 1/12 of the annual penalty for each month you don't have coverage. If you owe a fee, you'll pay it on your 2017 federal income tax return. You usually file this return in 2016.

Open enrollment for 2016 health insurance coverage

If none of the options for getting covered outside Open Enrollment works for you, your next chance to enroll in health coverage through the Marketplace is the next open enrollment period.

The Open Enrollment period for 2016 coverage is November 1, 2015 to January 31, 2016.

Coverage can start as soon as January 1, 2016 if you apply before December 15th. The 15th is the cutoff for coverage to begin the first of the following month. 

Short-term health insurance policies

A good option for many is just to purchase an inexpensive short-term policy until you can purchase a traditional policy at open enrollment. These policies work much like regular insurance though they generally do not cover preventative care or any pre-existing conditions. They are basically a major medical policy that will cover you if you have an accident or become sick after you have purchased the policy. You can choose deductibles from $250 to $2,500 and premiums are very affordable. Learn more here 

Have questions or need help? Feel free to call us at 615-724-1702 or send an email we would love to help you.