Sometimes life changes are so sudden, or so big that you don’t even know where to start. Luckily, you don’t need to sweat the big stuff as long as you start the process quickly.
Most major life changes trigger a Special Enrollment Period, and it is not hard to report them. The trick is you need to start the process as soon as you can so that you don’t miss your window, or deadlines for coverage.
60 days – How long you have to report a life change. If you know something is coming up you can even report your change before it happens. If, for example, you know your divorce will go through on July 16th, and your coverage will end on July 31st, you can apply before July 15th and have no gap in coverage. The same thing applies to job changes.
The 15th of the month – The last day to apply for coverage starting the next month. For example, if you apply on May 15th your new plan can begin on June 1, but if you apply on May 20th you plan won’t begin until at least July 1.
90 days – The maximum amount of time you can go without coverage and get a waiver of the individual mandate penalty. “Rats, I missed the 15th now I am gonna get stuck paying the penalty.” Not necessarily, sometimes we can’t anticipate these life changes, and with the deadlines to apply, sometimes you just end up with a gap. There is a grace period written into the law to let people who got laid-off on the 27th to get their coverage squared away without having to pay the penalty. You will still want to take care of business as soon as possible to make sure your coverage gap isn’t too long, or you miss your window on your Special Enrollment Period.
Think you had a life change. Reach out to us today.
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