Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like Reviews.com.

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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The lowdown...

  • You can enroll in health insurance if you have certain qualifying life events such as marriage or the birth/adoption of a child
  • Open enrollment for health insurance typically occurs in the fall of every year
  • Check with the insurance provider you want to work with to learn when you are eligible to enroll


One thing that is absolutely certain in life is that our lives do not remain exactly the same from year to year. We all go through periods when we are able to relax a bit and enjoy the changes, but we know that unexpected things will sometimes throw everything off balance.

Health insurance gives us peace of mind that we will be able to take care of ourselves in case the unexpected happens. Compare health insurance rates now by using our FREE tool above!

Whether you are looking to change your health insurance coverage or looking for replacement coverage, you need to be aware of the times at which point you can obtain new coverage.

Open Enrollment

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Every year whether you have healthcare available through your employer or need to obtain individual coverage, you have access to an Open Enrollment Period when you can purchase healthcare insurance.

A great advantage of the Open Enrollment Period is that anyone who applies for coverage is able, by law, to obtain a policy. Insurers are required to provide coverage to everyone who applies.

You will not need to provide any type of proof that you are insurable, nor will you need to undergo an in-depth physical exam prior to being insured.

It is most important that you learn when the Open Enrollment Period is scheduled. If you do not enroll during this time, unless you experience a Qualifying Life Event, you will not be able to obtain coverage until the next Open Enrollment Period.

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Qualifying Life Events

The Affordable Care Act allow an individual to obtain new coverage or change existing coverage when he or she experiences a qualifying life event. These life events not only have an impact on your day to day life, but they also make you eligible for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). During the SEP for your particular life event, you are typically given 60 days in which to obtain coverage.

Following are many of the qualifying life events that will allow you to enroll in healthcare coverage outside of the Open Enrollment Period. Please note that this is not a complete list of reasons you may be eligible to enroll outside of the scheduled enrollment period.

  • Marriage or divorce
  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • Loss of coverage due to loss of job or change of student status
  • Loss of coverage due to aging out of a parent’s healthcare plan – usually at age 26
  • Loss of coverage due to the death or job loss of a policyholder who covered you under his/her policy
  • Relocation to any new address
  • Any address changes to or from transitional housing or leaving incarceration

It is important to understand that if you qualify for a Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) or Medicaid, you are eligible to enroll at any time.

When You are Ready to Enroll

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Finding the right healthcare coverage can be complicated. The best way for you to ensure that you have coverage that meets your needs is to compare what options are available.

Along with reviewing co-pays, procedures covered, and premium amount, one of the most important things you can do is make sure you understand what may happen when life changes again.

Enter your zip code in our FREE tool below to compare car insurance rates now!

Read all of the information about any plan you are considering to make sure you know when you’ll be able to add dependents, how to change your address and your payment choices.