Health Insurance Open Enrollment



The leaves are changing colors, the air is getting cooler, and the health insurance enrollment packet is sitting on your desk. It’s time for health insurance open enrollment!

Open enrollment is the period each year where you’re required to enroll in, opt-out of, or change your insurance coverage for the upcoming year. Open healthcare enrollment can be a head-scratching and frustrating time. Reviewing the changes in health care packages, weighing the cost of coverage, and figuring out the proper coverage for your family can be a daunting task. Adding to the stress is knowing that once open enrollment closes, you’ll be unable to make changes to your 2021 coverage. The only exception is a qualifying life event, such as having a child or getting married.

You are the one who decides which health insurance plan is the best choice for you and your family. Here is an overview of healthcare coverage and tips to ensure you're getting the best coverage for you and your family.

The timeline of your open enrollment period depends on how you get your health insurance. Here are three main ways people get health insurance coverage:

  • Employee-sponsored. Many people get their health insurance through their employers. Check with your human resources department to find out when your employer holds open enrollment.
  • Medicare. Those aged 65 and over qualify for Medicare coverage. The open enrollment period is October 15 - December 7, 2020.
  • Individual plan. If your employer doesn’t offer health insurance or if you’re an independent contractor, you can get individual insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or an insurance broker. Open enrollment is November 1 - December 15, 2020.

Depending on your current situation, you have the following health insurance options during open enrollment:

Review your current policy

If your current health insurance is still offered, you have the option to keep it. However, your current plan could have changes in store for 2021. These changes could include your primary care physician leaving your plan’s provider network or not providing coverage for your medications. Your insurance provider should mail you a letter outlining any changes.

If you choose to look for a plan that better fits your healthcare needs, open enrollment is the time to make the switch. You can research and purchase plans through the healthcare marketplace, directly from the insurance provider, or through an insurance broker.

Make changes to your employer-sponsored insurance

If you have your health insurance through your employer, you need to sign up or make changes to your coverage during your employer’s open enrollment period. As with an individual plan, review your offerings for any coverage changes.

Change your Medicare Plan

If you’re currently enrolled in Medicare you can change or update your plan during the open enrollment period. Changes would include adding prescription drug coverage (Medicare Part D) or switching to Medicare Advantage (Part C). Medicare open enrollment runs through December 7, 2020.

Purchase a short-term health plan

In the past, short-term health insurance plans were only available to young people or those who couldn’t afford traditional insurance. Short-term plans are less expensive than other planes, but they provide less coverage. For example, they may not cover basic services such as prescriptions, maternity, or mental health. This is a smart option if you need temporary health coverage.

Since 2010, Horizons Insurance & Financial Services has specialized in providing family protection, business insurance, group benefits, and retirement planning solutions. Our team of experienced personal and business consultants is committed to finding the right insurance coverage to meet your needs. To request a quote or consultation, call (954) 862-1735 today or complete our online request form.