Some consumers using Washington’s health exchange continue to experience problems months after the deadline for getting insurance. To help some of them, Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler announced Monday that effective Aug. 27 he was instituting a special enrollment period for individuals who are experiencing billing or payment issues. The special enrollment will run until Nov.14, 2014 and will be available only to those who have enrollment, billing or payment issues with an Exchange plan.
During the special enrollment period, if you have experienced getting or keeping coverage through the Exchange, you can either stay with your health insurer but switch to a plan sold outside of the Exchange or switch to a new health insurer outside of the Exchange.
Those who choose to leave the Exchange to pursue insurance coverage elsewhere will lose their premium and cost-sharing subsidies. They may also lose any credit toward their cost-sharing deductible or out-of-pocket maximum.
Those losses mean that even if you are eligible for the special enrollment, choosing a plan outside the Exchange may not be in your best interest.
Those who do choose to take advantage of the special enrollment period must select a plan within the same “metal” level that they chose through the Exchange. If you wish to exercise this option, you must first call the Healthplanfinder customer support center at 1-855-923-4633.
For those who wish to hang on. The new Enrollment period for individual and family coverage starts Nov. 15, 2014.