Now that health insurance has changed with the Affordable Care Act and Obamacare, one thing that has drastically changed is that you cannot purchase health insurance whenever you want.
You have to purchase health insurance during “open enrollment,” unless you have a qualifying event, which gives you access to a special enrollment period.
So why is there an open enrollment, and why can’t I just purchase health insurance whenever I want?
The question really is about preventing people to come onto plans that don’t have a pre-existing conditions and want immediate coverage–only when they actually need it. If a person could enroll whenever they wanted to, and they were guaranteed coverage, then people could easily take advantage of the system.
For example, a person could avoid paying for health insurance every month but the moment they got into a car accident could become insured by a health insurance company, then they would get the benefits of health insurance without paying the price.
So, this puts the pressure on people to purchase health insurance during a certain time and to have health insurance over an extended amount of time instead of just purchasing it right before when they need it. This idea of having an open enrollment isn’t anything new. Large corporations use open enrollment every year. It’s only changed for those that were on the individual market.
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