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California health insurance  -  Individual California health insurance  -  Enrollment for Individual health plans

What is the process of enrolling in California individual health insurance?

The good news is that the hard part is done.

Once you have decided on a plan, you are now faced with the enrollment process. Let's walk through the health insurance enrollment process step by step so that you know what to expect.

The California individual health insurance application

The major carriers in California now offer both a hard copy of the health application and an online version.

 The online application typically processes more quickly and we recommend this approach as long as it seems to be moving smoothly for you. The online apps are relatively new (last five years) so they can get stuck now and then.

There are considerable privacy requirements for insurance companies so we feel confident in their online systems to protect private health information.

Sections of the individual health application

Each carrier's application is slightly different but we'll go through some of the key sections. The online applications pretty much follow the same structure as the hard copy apps with some added clarifications on online signatures, etc.

1. General information. This is your basic information. You will have an option for a residence address (needs to be in the State) and a billing address in case someone else is paying for the policy.

2. Plan Selection. The carriers have needed to have two companies to roll new plans so go by the plan name. For example, Anthem Blue Cross's new plans are under their BC Life and Health banner.

3. Prior insurance. This is important to the carriers because it can affect waiting periods for pre-existing conditions. If you have qualified coverage that did not lapse prior to the new plan, this can go towards your waiting period. It also affect your potential options for HIPAA guaranteed issue coverage if you meet the requirements.
4. Signatures and Authorizations. You will need to sign the document (or e-sign) and complete a HIPAA authorization which allows them to request medical records if they wish to look deeper into a given health situation.

5. Billing Section. Depending on the carrier, you will probably be able to request a billing (monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly), monthly credit card deduction, or automatic checking account deduction.

7. California health Broker information. This section is for us and it allows us to help with both the enrollment process and future membership issues.

The California individual health insurance underwriting process

Since 2014, health insurance plans are no longer medically underwritten due to the ACA law.  This means that health history is no longer used for ACA health plans.

The 10 Day Free Look Window

In California, you have a "10 day free look period" from when you receive notification of their decision to decline the offer with no payment required. The plan is called a "policy never effective". You do not need to bind the policy outside of paying the premium. The ID card and policy will typically arrive in 5-7 business days.
 

Call us at 800-320-6269 with any questions.  Our services are free to you as licensed health agents.

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