Sign up for coverage and financial assistance by August 15th
The outset of the COVID-19 public health crisis threatened millions of Americans’ health and financial security. In response to this unprecedented crisis, President Biden announced a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) insurance marketplace through August 15. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) passed by Congress in March, eligible Americans seeking health care coverage during the SEP will also have access to temporarily expanded financial assistance.
Enrollment in health care coverage through the ACA marketplace is typically only open for people with qualifying life events such as a household change or loss of coverage. Due to the unprecedented circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the current SEP allows all Americans to apply for coverage through August 15 by visiting HealthCare.gov – including those who do not currently have health care coverage and those who are currently enrolled and wish to change health plans. Individuals eligible for Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Plan (CHIP) can apply for affordable coverage at any time.
Due to the ARPA tax credits, millions more Americans seeking coverage are now eligible for expanded financial assistance to make premiums more affordable. This includes people with incomes over 400% of the federal poverty level who were previously ineligible for subsidies, and current enrollees who can now access even more premium savings. On average, monthly premiums for Americans who enroll in ACA marketplace coverage during the SEP will be lower by $50 per person. 4 out of 10 people will be able to get a plan for $10 per month or less with financial assistance, and over 50% of enrollees will be able to enroll in a silver plan for $10 or less per month.
More than 2 million Americans have received coverage through the ACA marketplace since the SEP began in February 2021. For individuals who do not currently have health coverage, signing up before August 15 is a crucial step toward maintaining your health and financial security as our nation works to overcome the COVID-19 crisis.
To apply for coverage, visit HealthCare.gov. For more information about understanding your coverage options, check out the following resources:
- Understanding Special Enrollment Periods
- Marketplace coverage and Coronavirus Information
- Quick Guide to the Health Insurance Marketplace
- Determining Medicaid Eligibility
- Determining what type of Marketplace your state uses
- Navigating the 2021 Special Enrollment Period
- People with limited English proficiency can visit www.healthcare.gov/language-resource/ or call 1-800-318-2596 for help in their native language