On March 23, 2010, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The law put in place comprehensive health insurance reforms that will roll out over a series of years. Some of these reforms are focused on health insurance companies and mandates for coverage, many of which have already been implemented. Another component of the ACA requires that Americans purchase health insurance coverage.
The Open Enrollment period for 2016 coverage starts November 1, 2015 and will run through January 31, 2016.
What’s New Thanks to ACA
- All health insurance plans have to cover important benefits, like doctor visits, hospitalizations, prescriptions, and more.
- The costs and benefits of each plan must be explained in easy-to-understand language.
- You can’t be denied coverage for a pre-existing condition.
- Preventive care is free, free, free.
Important Dates for 2015 Coverage
- November 1, 2015: Open Enrollment starts — first day you can enroll in a 2016 insurance plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Coverage can start as soon as January 1, 2016.
- December 15, 2015: Last day to enroll in or change plans for new coverage to start January 1, 2016.
- January 1, 2016: Coverage starts for those who enroll or change plans by December 15.
- January 15, 2016: Last day to enroll in or change plans for new coverage to start February 1, 2016.
- January 31, 2016:: 2016 Open Enrollment ends. Enrollments or changes between January 16 and January 31 take effect March 1, 2016.