The signing of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act began a series of healthcare reforms that took effect in 2014. Hundreds of uninsured Americans were able to obtain insurance, and insurance policies that were dishonest or failed to cover enough were shut down. However, with the insurance reforms came changes to health insurance enrollments that people need to keep in mind. These changes to health insurance enrollment may result in loss of coverage, missed coverage opportunities, or fines for lack of coverage for those who do not pay attention to the health insurance enrollment deadlines.

What do I do for health insurance enrollment?

First, check if your job offers health insurance as a part of your benefits package. Many Americans are covered through their jobs and do not have to go through a separate health insurance enrollment process. If you are a full time university student, your college or university might offer health insurance enrollment through their on campus health and wellness clinic, through their enrollment process, or through the campus bursar’s office. Ask your university if they offer health insurance enrollment in a special student plan. If you are not covered by health insurance from a job or university or you want to shop around for a different plan, you can find health insurance enrollment through a health insurance marketplace or health insurance exchange set up by the federal government or your state government.

Things to keep in mind when seeking health insurance enrollment:

  • There is a limited window of time each year for open health insurance enrollment.
  • You may be able to get or change coverage outside of the open health insurance enrollment window if you have experienced certain life changes or significant life events.
  • You do not need to pursue health insurance enrollment through a health insurance marketplace if you qualify for Medicare.