If you don’t have health insurance, you can explore your options during the next open enrollment period. This provides the chance for you to find new coverage or a new plan to replace your existing coverage. You can learn more about this period and the opportunities it provides for health insurance coverage now to help you make a better-informed decision later.

When is Open Enrollment

If you live in a state that offers heathcare.gov plans, you may already be eligible for enrollment. These states are still offering enrollment for people who have been receiving unemployment benefits. In other states, the new open enrollment phase begins on November 1 and will last until December 15. This time period is necessarily brief to ensure all policies can go into effect for 2022. Some states run their own exchanges, and they may extend deadlines until December 31. If you live in California, Connecticut, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, or Washington, D.C., you have that extended December 31 deadline.

What is the ACA Subsidy?

The Affordable Care Act offers a tax credit to help families better afford health insurance coverage. In the past, this subsidy only applied to households with a combined income of 400% of the poverty level or higher, but that stipulation has been removed. Instead, you can earn the tax credit if your insurance coverage costs 8.5% of your household income or higher. Households with lower income levels can receive cheaper health insurance coverage through the American Rescue Plan since this plan lowers the percentage of income that plans charge.

How to Prepare to Enroll

To complete your enrollment, you’ll need to have some documentation ready. This will include identification that verifies your name, address, and citizenship status. You’ll also need to provide information regarding the size of your household. You’ll be asked for banking information to process premiums as well. To complete enrollment, you’ll be asked for your doctor’s name and information to verify that they are in-network, and you’ll be asked for the prescription information for any medication you’re taking.

No matter how long you have gone without coverage, this is the ideal time to get health insurance for you or your family. Taking the time to compare plans will help you discover the coverage that’s best for your situation.