Can I Switch Plans More Than Once in a Year?
My husband and I are college students and are planning on moving twice next calendar year. We will be moving to another state to live with my parents during the summer, and then moving to graduate school in another state in the fall. There is also a good chance I will be pregnant during this time, so we are very concerned about gaps in our health insurance coverage. Will the Marketplace allow me to switch my plan twice in one year? And without any gaps in my coverage?
You can switch health plans via ObamaCare's special enrollment every time you have a qualifying life event, even if it's the same event more than once. Aside from that you can only switch plans during open enrollment.
Typically you'll be able to enroll up to 30 days before the event with coverage starting on or around the date of the event. Make sure to coordinate start and end dates of coverage to avoid gaps in coverage and to avoid paying for two insurances at once. Keep in mind that some states use HealthCare.Gov and some states use their own Marketplace.
Also keep in mind that cost sharing is based on annual policy periods. So if you switch plans you'll lose the money you paid into your cost sharing amounts.
I have a similar question. I had health insurance in Hawaii where I lived and worked. I moved to NH which then qualified me for the special enrollment period. I have decided after being in NH that I want to go back to college which is out of state again (Missouri). Should I wait another two weeks when I will be in Missouri to get Health insurance? I want to make sure I don’t get penalized for not having health coverage. Do I have 60 days after the original loss of health insurance from Hawaii to enroll in new coverage, or do I have an additional 60 days because I am moving again. I don’t want to get health insurance in NH just to switch again in 2 weeks when I move but I also don’t want to get penalized. Please help!
You can have a special enrollment period of 60 days after each move in order to have access to the marketplaces outside of the annual open enrollment periods. However, the coverage GAP exemption from owing the fee for not having coverage tax wise is 3 consecutive months. So you’ll want to keep your current coverage until you are able to establish coverage in the new state of residence if you move more than once during a tax year.