Health insurance basics
Health insurance guide
What is a health insurance premium?
What is the Affordable Care Act?
What is a health insurance deductible?
Types of health insurance
What is a health maintenance organization (HMO)?
What is a preferred provider organization (PPO)?
What is an exclusive provider organization (EPO)?
What are the differences between an HMO, PPO, EPO, and POS plan?
Common health insurance costs
Frequently asked questions
Open enrollment is the time to buy health insurance on the Obamacare marketplace. Find out when your open enrollment is and whether premiums will be changing.
Federal open enrollment for Americans in need of a 2021 health care plan will run from Nov. 1, 2020, to Dec. 15, 2020. If you live in a state that has its own health insurance exchange, the deadline may be later. You can check out the guide below to find out the details in your state.
Obamacare open enrollment is for people who want to buy or make changes to their individual health plan. If your employer provides health insurance, ask your human resources department when open enrollment takes place; new employees should be able to purchase their company’s health insurance outside of open enrollment if doing so for the first time.
Premium rates remain mostly stable over last year, with most insurers posting only a small increase.
If you miss the healthcare open enrollment deadline, you can still purchase health insurance during a special enrollment period to buy coverage. Special enrollment is generally tied to a qualifying life event, like marriage, divorce, the birth or adoption of a child, a move across state lines, or the loss of health insurance.
If you’re eligible for Medicaid, you can apply for it at any time during the year. Read this state-by-state guide to Medicaid to see if you qualify. If you’re eligible for Medicare, then you may already be enrolled, although many people still need to apply for it, so be sure to check your enrollment status on Medicare.gov. Medicare is a public health insurance program for people over age 65 and people with severe disabilities.
Scroll down to see open enrollment dates, projected premiums, participating insurers and other important information regarding open enrollment 2020 in your state. Plans purchased through the health insurance marketplaces during the upcoming open enrollment period will begin January 1, 2021.
Note: Unless otherwise noted, premium rate changes are pending approval by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.
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If your state health insurance marketplace has closed and you're not eligible for Medicaid or Medicare, the federal health insurance program for citizens and permanent residents at retirement age, you will need to qualify for a special enrollment period to buy an Obamacare plan.
You generally qualify for special enrollment after:
The loss other health coverage Marriage Divorce The birth of a baby The adoption a child Moving across state lines Gaining Citizenship or "lawful presence in the U.S." Leaving incarceration
If you qualify for special enrollment, check out our guide to shopping the health insurance exchanges.
If you don't qualify for special enrollment and need health insurance or can't find an affordable plan in your area, there are a few ways to get at least some level of coverage. These include:
Health insurance and life insurance work together to offer financial protection.
Health insurance can pay your medical expenses. Life insurance keeps your loved ones whole after you die.
Elissa is a personal finance editor at Policygenius in New York City. She writes about estate planning, mortgages, and occasionally health insurance. In the past she has written about film and music.
Derek is a tax expert at Policygenius in New York City. He has written about multiple personal finance topics in the past, and his work has been covered by Yahoo Finance, MSN, Business Insider and CNBC.
Policygenius’ editorial content is not written by an insurance agent. It’s intended for informational purposes and should not be considered legal or financial advice. Consult a professional to learn what financial products are right for you.
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