The following are highlights from a conference call presented by Peter V. Lee, Executive Director of Covered California, Friday, February 20, 2015.
‘«ů Consumers who started their enrollment process or had trouble enrolling have until midnight February 22, 2015 to enroll via CoveredCA Call Center, a CoveredCA storefront, a certified agent, enrollment counselor or plan based enroller.
- If consumers enroll during this extension, coverage will begin March 1, 2015
‘«ů A new criteria for Special Enrollment Period (SEP), allows consumers facing tax penalty for 2014 or realizing tax penalties for 2014/2015 to enroll in Covered California
- New criteria for special enrollment taking effect Monday Feb 23, ending April 30, 2015; estimated 300,000 to 600,000 Californians are affected
- Consumer qualifying under this new criteria can enroll via CoveredCA.com, a Covered CA storefront, certified agent, enrollment counselor, plan based enroller, or Covered California Call Center.
- The purpose is to allow for special circumstance. Not all Californians are aware that penalties are there. First time enrollment overlapped with tax season.
- No documentation e.g. tax return showing penalty, is needed. Only attestation is required. This gives consumers the benefit of the doubt. Certified agents, CEC and PBEs should trust the consumer.
- 2014 penalties are not being waived if uninsured in 2014. Consumers are still subject to partial penalty if they don't enroll until April 30, with coverage beginning June 1.
‘«ů Next Covered CA Open Enrollment: Oct 1 through Dec 15
‘«ů Health plans were notified of this new criteria and applaud the program
‘«ů This is not a response to meet target of 1.7 enrollees. It's to make coverage available
‘«ů A campaign on getting the word out to taxpayers will be announced in two weeks