What you need to know
Canceling a health insurance policy can be as easy as calling up your insurance company and asking them to cancel the coverage. But canceling a health insurance policy without having a new health insurance policy in place (or alternative coverage like Medicare) could leave you open to a fine. If you're outside of Open Enrollment, you can only purchase health insurance if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. It's smart to line up your next health insurance policy before you cancel your existing policy. That way, you never have a gap in coverage.
If you're canceling a plan that you purchased on a health insurance marketplace, such as healthcare.gov or a state marketplace, you can cancel the policy by logging into your marketplace account, selecting "My Plans & Programs," and hitting "End (Terminate) All Coverage." Set your coverage end date and follow the final instructions to cancel your policy. You can also call the marketplace help center if you need help or are switching to a government-run health program.
If you're cancelling a privately purchased plan, you can call your health insurance company directly. Your insurer's phone number should be printed on your policy, health insurance card, and your premium bills. Your insurer may allow you to cancel over phone. They may also require that you fax or mail them a confirmation letter.
If you want to cancel an employer-provided health insurance plan, talk to your HR department or the person at your company that handles benefits.