The annual Open Enrollment Period (OEP) is a set period of time when you can enroll in the majority of medical health insurance plans or ACA-compliant health insurance plans each year. The Open Enrollment Period is consistent across the majority of the states, but some states might have an earlier date for their OEP. With 2023 progressing toward the last quarter, it’s almost time for employers and employees to get prepared for the OEP for the 2024 coverage.
This article will provide important OEP dates and enrollment guidance for all states.
When is Open Enrollment for Health Insurance 2024?
OEP for States Participate in Federal Exchange
Most states in the U.S. follow the federal Open Enrollment Period dates for 2024 health insurance coverage, running from November 1, 2023 to January 15, 2024. To get coverage that starts on January 1, 2024, employees will need to enroll by December 15, 2023. The following is a full list of states that follow the federal Open Enrollment Period:
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
OEP for States with State-Based Exchange
Some states operate their state-based exchanges and might have their own OEP for 2024 plans (not all of them). The following list covers all those states with state-based exchanges and their OEP dates for 2024:
- California: November 1, 2023 - January 31, 2024
- Colorado: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- Connecticut: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- District of Columbia: November 1, 2023 - January 31, 2024
- Idaho: October 15, 2023 - December 15, 2023
- Kentucky: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- Maine: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- Maryland: November 1, 2023 - December 15, 2023
- Massachusetts: November 1, 2023 - January 23, 2024
- Minnesota: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- Nevada: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- New Jersey: November 1, 2023 - January 31, 2024
- New Mexico: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- New York: November 16, 2023 - January 31, 2024
- Pennsylvania: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- Rhode Island: November 1, 2023 - January 31, 2024
- Vermont: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
- Washington: November 1, 2023 - January 15, 2024
What If I Missed the Open Enrollment Deadline for 2024 Health Insurance Plans?
People who missed the Open Enrollment deadline can still apply for health insurance through a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). You can qualify for SEP if you’ve experienced a qualifying life event.
Qualifying Life Event
A Qualifying Life Event (QLE) is something you experience that results in a life situation change and thus makes you eligible for a Special Enrollment Period to apply for health insurance even if you’ve missed the annual open enrollment deadline. Qualifying life event includes:
- Loss of health insurance through your job, school, family
- Changes in the household such as getting married or divorced, having a baby or adopting a child, death of a family member
- Change of home address
- Your employer offers to help with the cost of coverage
- Other qualifying events
- Changes in your income
- Gaining membership in a federally recognized tribe or status as an Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Corporation shareholder
- Becoming a U.S. citizen
- Leaving jail or prison
- AmeriCorps members starting or ending their service
How Long is the Special Enrollment Period (SEP)?
If you are qualified for a special enrollment period, you’ll have 60 days to enroll in a plan. If you miss that 60-day window, you’ll have to wait until the open enrollment period of that year.
Get Prepared for Open Enrollment for 2024 Health Insurance Plans
It’s never too early to start preparing for open enrollment this year. Employers should inform their employees of the important dates and requirements regarding enrollment for health insurance plans for 2024. If you need any help or guidance on navigating this period, contact an HR services provider.