This article was last updated in 2014. For the most up-to-date information on health insurance, visit our Health Insurance Guide.
Last week The New York Times reported that 20 percent of health care marketplace enrollees didn't pay the first month's premium in time, which means they weren't covered in January. Some shoppers may have simply changed their minds, but for anyone else still waiting to hear from the insurer, this is a good time to go back and double-check that your application was correctly processed.
Most insurers require payment anywhere from 10-30 days upon receipt of an invoice, but if you never got your invoice then you should do the following:
1. Log in to your health insurance marketplace and confirm that you successfully completed your application. If you see problems, contact the marketplace's customer support for help. 2. If your marketplace application is in order, then call the insurance company. It's possible that your application was accepted but something went wrong on the billing side of things. You can find the insurer's customer service number on your plan's Summary of Benefits and Coverage statement, which you can always download from your chosen plan's detail page on the marketplace (see below).
If you’re still not covered but want to be, you just missed the enrollment deadline for March 1st coverage (it was on February 15th). But there might still be hope for people who missed the February 15th deadline. Starting February 18th, you can call 1-800-318-2596 to request coverage starting March 1. This special exception was granted because the Social Security databases were undergoing maintenance from February 15 through February 17 (which prevented Social Security number verifications required for health plan enrollment).