Can I Change My Insurance Plan If I Get Pregnant

When Can I Enroll In A Health Insurance Plan To Cover My Pregnancy

Can I Get Health Insurance While I am Pregnant

You can enroll in coverage during the Open Enrollment Period for coverage that starts the following year. Open enrollment usually starts on November 1st of every year.

In most states, being pregnant is not a qualifying event that lets you enroll in or change your health insurance outside of open enrollment. However, there are other life changes that may qualify you for a Special Enrollment Period:

  • Birth of a child, placing a child in foster care, or adopting a child
  • Getting married
  • A divorce or legal separation that results in loss of coverage
  • Moving to a new residence

Even thoughpregnancy isnt usually a qualifying event, some states have different laws. Atthe time of publishing, pregnancy qualifies you for special enrollment in NewYork and Maryland. Contact your states health department to learn if pregnancyis a qualifying event where you live.

Compare Health Coverage Options

Start by digging into how the plans available to you cover costs related to pregnancy and giving birth.

Comparing some maternity costs across plans may be easier than you might think: Pregnancy and having a baby are among the “common medical events” that the Affordable Care Act requires insurers to detail coverage for in a plan’s Summary of Benefits and Coverage document.

Many employers also offer modeling tools to help workers estimate out-of-pocket costs for a particular condition or procedure, said Karen Frost, senior vice president of health strategy and solutions for Alight Solutions. Maternity expenses are a popular health need included there.

But take all those coverage estimates with a grain of salt. Figures are often comparing against national averages, and focus on a “normal delivery,” said Fish-Parcharm. It’s still important to look at plan details such as your coinsurance rates and out-of-pocket maximums for the most you might spend.

Check to make sure your preferred doctors and medical facilities are in-network.

It’s worth casting a glance at out-of-network coverage, too. Charges from anesthesiologists and neonatal intensive care units are common surprise bills, Fish-Parcharm said.

Weigh those potential maternity expenses in conjunction with coverage for your family’s other medical needs and out-of-pocket costs. And don’t forget that the baby will have his or her own bills, with a deductible to meet, upon arrival.

What Is The Cost

None. Medicaid law prohibits states from charging deductibles, copayments, or similar charges for services related to pregnancy or conditions that might complicate pregnancy, regardless of the Medicaid enrollment category. HHS presumes pregnancy related services includes all services otherwise covered under the state plan, unless the state has justified classification of a specific service as not pregnancy-related in its state plan. States may, however, impose monthly premiums on pregnant women with incomes above 150% of FPL and charge for non-preferred drugs.

Most states that cover pregnant women in their CHIP program do not have cost-sharing or any other fees associated with participation in the program.

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How Can I Find Health Plans That Cover My Pregnancy

As mentioned, all Marketplace plans must cover maternity care as an essential health benefit. As a leading licensed insurance broker, eHealth offers a wide selection of individual and family health plans at different price points. We make it easy for you to find affordable care that fits your needs. If youd like to get started, just enter your zip code into our plan finder tool to browse plan options. If you have questions, our licensed insurance agents can help you find customized coverage solutions.

Maternity Leave And Disability Benefits: 6 Common Questions

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While pregnancy itself isnt a disability, complications may stem from it or arise independently. Maybe you want to start a family but somewhere along the way, a medical condition rears its ugly head, rendering you disabled and unable to work. How exactly do you balance a pregnancy or maternity leave and disability benefits?

Whether pregnancy or disability came first, the concern is that insurance companies wont pay for your parental or maternity leave. Additionally, if the insurer sees a parent taking care of a newborn child on their own, they will view that as evidence that the parent is able to return to work.

In this article, I answer 6 common questions about pregnancy leave, maternity leave, and disability claims. I talk about how they affect one another, and what you should be aware of when making a claim.

This article is part of our Ultimate Guide to Short-term Disability Benefits.

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Best Health Insurance For Pregnancy

The best health insurance for pregnancy will be determined by your income and whether your or your spouse’s employer provides health insurance. There are three types of health insurance plans that provide the best affordable options for pregnancy: employer-provided coverage, Affordable Care Act plans and Medicaid.

If You Lose Or Quit Your Job

Life is rarely predictable, especially when it comes to work. If you happen to lose your job or change jobs during your pregnancy or soon after your baby is born, you’ll need to pay careful attention to health insurance issues. Otherwise, you could be left uninsured at one of the most important times in your life.

When you change jobs, you usually give up health insurance coverage through your former employer and sign up for health benefits with your new employer. But expectant parents need to be especially careful when making job-related health insurance changes. This is because some employers impose a waiting period of a few months before you are eligible for health insurance coverage. If your baby is born while you are waiting for your benefits to kick in, you’ll be responsible for the bills.

Even if you are immediately eligible for health insurance benefits through your new employer, look before you leap: The terms of your new health insurance plan could be quite different than those of your old plan, and you may be forced to switch physicians at a very inconvenient time — midway through your pregnancy, for example. You also need to watch out for exclusions for preexisting conditions –your pregnancy could qualify.

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Change Of Residence: Gwen Moves Her Family Across The Country

Gwen, 46, is a single mom three boys in Raleigh, North Carolina. She just got some great news: Her employer has offered her a promotion overseeing a large sales force in Los Angeles. Her current plan features a robust network of health care providers in Raleigh, but none in Los Angeles. While not every change in residence is considered a qualifying life event, Gwens move outside her plans service area is. Gwen notifies her human resources department that she’d like to switch health plans so that finding covered providers near her new home won’t be a challenge.

If youve got questions about health savings accounts, read all about FSAs and HSAs.

Other changes in residence include:

  • Moving to a different ZIP code or county
  • A student moving to or from the place they attend school
  • A seasonal worker moving to or from the place they live and work
  • Moving to or from a shelter or other transitional housing

How To Change Insurance During Pregnancy

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Changing insurance during a pregnancy often creates anxiety for the mom-to-be. Thoroughly understanding the implications of switching your insurance coverage while pregnant eases some of the stress. Because of the high cost of prenatal care and the hospital charges for delivering a baby, it is important to maintain coverage and understand what you need to do to ensure you have no lapse in coverage. Always ask questions if something is unclear to avoid a misunderstanding that could cost you thousands of dollars.

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The Open Enrollment Period

Open enrollment period is the time to switch policies for pregnancy or any other reason. The open enrollment provides a right to buy insurance, and any eligible person can purchase, cancel, and replace a policy. The freedom of action during the open enrollment is in contrast to the time after it closes when no one can buy a qualified policy.

Policies purchased in the Obamacare marketplace offer premium tax credits, costs assistance and Health Savings Accounts, and costs reduction subsidies. Subscribers can only get these financial and cost benefits through the Obamacare Marketplace and state exchanges.

Switching Health Insurance During Annual Open Enrollment

Open enrollment is the time of year when anyone can change their health insurance plan, for any reason. The open enrollment period is every year from November 1 to December 15 .

During open enrollment, you can accept your current plans health insurance renewal, or you can shop around to find a better fit for you and your family. The new plan you choose will begin January 1.

Want to shop around? Here are a couple ways to make the experience a little simpler:

  • If you want to look at new plans with your same insurance provider, you can usually compare plans online or call their team. At HealthPartners, its easy to review health insurance plans online or get personal help by calling .
  • If you want to see options from different health insurance providers, you can either contact them directly, call your broker or use the health insurance marketplace. On the health insurance marketplace, you can see plan information from many different companies all at once. You can also find out if you qualify for financial assistance. In Minnesota, get started at In Wisconsin, go to

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Key Takeaways About Qualifying Life Events

The bottom line is, you might not need to wait for your employer or the government’s next open enrollment period to make changes to your health plan. Here’s what else you should know:

  • To make changes to your health plan, you must be experiencing a qualifying life event. If youre not sure an event qualifies, visit or contact your current or future health plan sponsors for more specific information.
  • Qualifying life events trigger a “special enrollment period” that typically lasts 30 to 60 days, depending on your plan, during which you can select a new plan or add a new dependent to your plan.
  • To change your plan selections, notify your current or future health plan sponsor of the qualifying event in your life as soon as possible.
  • Other qualifying life events include getting married, losing coverage due to divorce, losing eligibility for Medicaid, and exhausting your COBRA coverage.
  • Different plans have different rules. Contact your plan administrator about any change in status that impacts your health coverage to find out your rights.

Who Pays My Insurance Plan When Im On Mat Leave

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One key factor thats often overlooked by individuals while on maternity leave or before going off of work for a sick leave is what to do about the benefits they currently receive through their employer.

Mainly, the question is: Who is responsible for paying them?

This depends on your employer and your specific insurance provider. Some employers pay 100% of insurance plans, but this might change while youre on leave. You might have to pay a portion or the full amount in order to keep your plan in place.

I often hear that individuals arent aware of this and dont plan for it in their budget. People often only find out that their benefits are ending when they receive a notice so, they lose out on their benefits when they dont have to. Usually its just a matter of not knowing to ask about it. Be sure to contact your HR department to learn whos responsible for paying before its too late.

This advice applies to any pension programs that youre paying into, as well. You might lose out for the months youre away you may be able to contribute while youre away or make up for your lost contributions once you return to work. Always ask your employer how taking a leave will affect your contributions.

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Will A Marketplace Health Plan Also Cover A Newborn

Yes. The ACAs EHB requirement mandates coverage of maternity and newborn care. Newborn care covers childbirth and immediate care for the baby after birth. The specifics of this coverage will vary by state and by each individual plan, but all women in Marketplace coverage must also enroll their baby in coverage soon after birth.

If the newborn is eligible for Marketplace coverage, then the parents can choose to add the baby to the familys existing Marketplace plan or choose a new Marketplace plan for the baby. If they opt for the latter, they can enroll the baby into a new Marketplace plan at any metal tier. However, when enrolling a newborn into Marketplace coverage, other members of the household are generally not permitted to change their existing Marketplace coverage.

Find Cheap Health Insurance Quotes In Your Area

Maternity coverage has greatly improved in recent years, as the Affordable Care Act requires health care plans to cover pregnancy services. The best health insurance will provide coverage for all pregnancy costs, including prenatal testing, blood work, ultrasounds, monthly or weekly doctor visits, and the labor and delivery of the baby. These medical bills can add up quickly, with the average cost of pregnancy ranging from $9,000 to $200,000 without insurance. More affordable plans are also available, such as hospital indemnity policies, but they don’t include as many benefits as other maternity coverage.

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If You Dont Have Health Coverage

  • Health coverage makes it easier to get the medical check-ups and screening tests to help keep both you and your baby healthy during pregnancy.
  • If you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period due to a life event like moving or losing other coverage, you may be able to enroll in a Marketplace health plan right now. Being pregnant doesnt make you eligible, but the birth of a child does.
  • Create an account now to apply for Marketplace coverage through the Open Enrollment Period or a Special Enrollment Period. If you select the option to get help paying for coverage on your application, youll be asked if youre pregnant. Reporting your pregnancy may help you and your family members get the most affordable coverage.
  • If you dont qualify for a Special Enrollment Period right now, youll be eligible to apply within 60 days of your childs birth. You can also enroll in 2021 coverage during the next Open Enrollment Period this fall.
  • If eligible for Medicaid or CHIP, your coverage can begin at any time.

Your Baby Probably Has A Separate Deductible

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When your baby is born, you may assume he or she will just get necessary care as part of your birthing costs. But this isn’t necessarily the case.

Babies are separate people from their mom or dad, so many insurers require them to meet their own deductible before their care is covered. If your baby needs medical interventions after birth, you may have to pay the deductible first before your insurance starts covering some of the bills.

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Can A Health Plan Refuse To Let Me Enroll Because I’m Pregnant

No.* In the past, insurance companies could turn you down if you applied for coverage while you were pregnant. At that time, many health plans considered pregnancy a pre-existing condition.

Health plans can no longer deny you coverage if you are pregnant. That’s true whether you get insurance through your employer or buy it on your own.

What’s more, health plans cannot charge you more to have a policy because you are pregnant. An insurance company can’t increase your premium based on your sex or health condition. A premium is the amount you pay each month to have insurance.

What Is Supplemental Insurance For Pregnancy

Supplemental maternity insurance coverage is a health insurance policy that makes cash payments directly to you rather than paying the gynecologist, hospital or other health care providers. There are two main forms of additional insurance that you can purchase for pregnancy: short-term disability and hospital indemnity. However, both of these policies must be purchased before conception, as they do not include coverage for pre-existing conditions.

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Can I Get Ei Maternity Benefits And Disability Benefits Like Ei Sickness At The Same Time

EI has regular and special benefits sickness, maternity, and parental benefits all fall under the special umbrella. You can receive both EI sickness and another special benefit during the same benefit period. This includes maternity and parental leave.

You shouldnt wait to receive the benefits after one another rather, you should apply for both as soon as you qualify for both. You can only typically receive 50 weeks of a benefit in a 52-week benefit period. But, the maximum number of weeks may increase to 102 when you combine sickness and maternity.

Be sure to review the criteria and gather the appropriate medical documentation for each of your applications. This is because you must qualify for each plan independently.

Prior To 2014 Most Individual Plans Excluded Maternity Coverage Today All New Policies Include Maternity Benefits

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Prior to 2014, women who purchased their own health insurance were often completely out of luck if they wanted to have coverage for maternity. In 2013, the National Womens Law Center reported that just 12 percent of individual market plans included maternity benefits. And that was despite the fact that nine states required maternity benefits to be included on all individual plans.

In the rest of the states, maternity coverage in the individual market was extremely rare, and if it did exist, it was generally in the form of an expensive rider that could be added to a plan, usually with a waiting period. Yet even on plans that excluded maternity coverage, women were charged premiums that were at least 30 percent higher than those charged to men for the same coverage.

Before Obamacare made coverage guaranteed issue, pregnancy itself was also considered a pre-existing condition that would prevent an expectant parent male or female from obtaining coverage in all but five states. And many individual health insurance carriers considered a previous cesarean section to be a reason to decline an application or charge a higher initial premium. .

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