You’ve just promised to love one another “in sickness and in health”.. but let’s hope you will both experience nothing but good health! Of course, enrolling in a health insurance plan is always a good idea, especially because the preventive medicine covered by most plans can help to ensure you enjoy a long and healthy life together. So now that you’ve said your vows, here’s the run-down on your health insurance options.
You can enroll in a health insurance plan now. Normally, you would have to wait until the next Open Enrollment period. But marriage is a “qualifying life event”, or a life change that allows you to make changes to your health insurance plan. Sign on to Covered California, or talk to a licensed insurance broker, within 60 days of your marriage.
You can save money. If you enroll on a plan sold through Covered California, you may receive financial assistance to cover the cost of your premiums. Couples who earn between $15,730 and $63,920 annually may qualify for a discount. Keep in mind that you can only sign up for insurance through the exchange if your employer does not offer health insurance.
You can join your partner’s existing plan. If your partner already has health insurance, you might choose to join their plan. Investigate the coverage options and deductible, and decide together whether the plan suits you. In some cases it is better to join your partner’s plan, but in others it makes more sense for the two of you to get a new plan together. For example, if you anticipate starting a family soon, you may want a plan with a lower deductible.
Remember that you only have 60 days from the date of your marriage to change your plan options, or to enroll in a new plan together. Don’t get so distracted on the honeymoon that you forget to take care of practical matters!