Friday, March 27, 2015

More March (Open Enrollment) Madness

As we noted a few weeks ago, Our Betters in DC© have (illegally) extended Open Enrollment season for those who flaunted the (evil) Individual Mandate last year:

"The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced today a special enrollment period (SEP) for individuals and families who did not have health coverage in 2014 and are subject to the fee or “shared responsibility payment

Aetna has emailed a helpful "message for the brokers" to let us know that "[t]his Special Enrollment Period is for on-exchange business only and all applications must go through the Marketplace." That's actually a helpful bit of info: it means that one can only satisfy the requirement this way by going to the buggy, security-challenged Exchange.

The carrier also "expects premiums to be paid prior to the member’s specified due date. Exchange rules require a payment grace period. Although this is not a new term, the grace period for Exchange premium payments will differ between non-subsidized and subsidized members."

Which is a rather long-winded way of saying that some insureds are more equal than others. You'll also note that they don't specify exactly how some are more equal, presumably to avoid giving folks any ideas about gaming the system (heh). The bottom line is that, if you're eligible for and take a subsidy, your grace period is 3 times greater than the rest of us proles.

Isn't that special.

Oh, and ICYMI, only those who meet these criteria are eligible at all:

  • Are not already enrolled in a 2015 plan.
  • Were unaware or did not understand the implications of the fee for not enrolling for 2014 until after the end of open enrollment (February 15, 2015).
  • Owe a fee for not having coverage in 2014
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