Insurance Blog 7 DEC

How to Get Health Insurance After the Death of a Spouse

December 07, 2020

How to Get Health Insurance After the Death of a Spouse

When a loved one passes away, you are left with a lot of difficult decisions to make. One of your primary concerns is getting a health insurance plan that matches the adjustments in your life. Fortunately, you do not have to wait until open enrollment (November 1st – December 15th) to get coverage. Under the Affordable Care Act, you can enroll in or adjust your insurance plan any time after the death of a loved one.

If you are unsure how to get insurance after a spouse’s death or how to update our plan, you may want to speak with a health insurance broker or agent. An agent can help you find an individual or family health plan that meets your needs and budget. If you have any further questions about health insurance, feel free to contact Insurance Enterprise. Let us guide you through this new stage of your life.

What is the Special Enrollment Period?

A special enrollment period (SEP) is a 60-day window that allows you to change or sign up for new health insurance coverage outside of the open enrollment period. To qualify for special enrollment, you need to have experienced a qualifying life event (QLE).

There are many types of QLEs, includin:

  • Death of a loved one
  • Change in household size that impacts your taxes
  • Significant changes in income
  • Loss of employer health insurance
  • Relocating to a different state or zip code

These types of qualifying life events are situations that may be related to the death of a spouse. As such, they grant you access to insurance coverage for 60 days.

Staying Insured as a Surviving Spouse

You or your family can do two things to stay insured after you lose a loved one.

1. Enter a Special Enrollment Period

You need to apply for health insurance coverage as soon as possible so that your current coverage does not lapse or you miss the 60-day deadline for enrollment. You qualify for a special enrollment period if you meet the following criteria:

  • Your spouse has passed away in the last 60 days.
  • Your spouse was your health insurance dependent.
  • You were dependent on your spouse’s health insurance coverage.
  • The health insurance was in your spouse’s, but you were named on the plan.
  • The health insurance coverage is in your name.

If your current monthly income is substantially reduced following a loved one’s death, you may qualify for increased payment help or Medicaid.

2. Continue Your Deceased Spouse Insurance Using COBRA:

If your spouse had health insurance through a large group or an employer, and you were dependent on that plan, you may qualify for COBRA coverage. With COBRA, you pay the monthly premiums of your employer’s health insurance plan. While the cost of coverage can be expensive, you still have health insurance temporarily until you find a better option.

If the primary policyholder passed away in the last 60 days, and you want to continue to stay on their group health insurance plan, COBRA rules allow you to do so. COBRA is not a permanent or long-term solution, though, as it only lasts for up to 18 months after you enroll. You can qualify for COBRA if you meet the following criteria:

  • Your spouse passed away in the last 60 days
  • You were a named dependent on your spouse’s health insurance plan
  • You want to stay on your spouse’s employer-based health insurance plan.

How to Choose a Health Plan?

You may be wondering which health insurance company is the best? When choosing a plan, you first need to assess your personal healthcare needs, look at all your options, and choose a health insurance plan that fits your budget. How do you determine which health insurance is best? Ask yourself these questions:

  • How often do you visit your doctor?
  • What type of treatment do you need in the next 12 months?
  • What prescription drugs do you currently take?
  • Which healthcare providers/physicians do you prefer?

Once you decide your healthcare needs, you can narrow your search to health insurance companies in your state.

Welcome to the MultiPlan PHCS Network

What are the benefits of PHCS coverage? You get to choose any doctor within the PPO network. This gives you an additional opportunity to save your healthcare dollars. MultiPlan’s PHCS Limited Benefit Network gives you discounted access to qualified doctors, healthcare facilities, labs, imaging centers, and hospitals at no additional charge.

Multiplan is one of the oldest and largest healthcare networks in the U.S. Currently, MultiPlan contracts with over 770,000 respected practitioners, 5,000 hospitals, and 70,000 ancillary care facilities, making it easier than ever to find a participating healthcare provider in your area. You save an average of 20-30% off inpatient and outpatient hospital charges when you use the MultiPlan Network.

We Offer Affordable Health Insurance in These States:

Contact Insurance Enterprise for Premier Health Insurance

If you have questions about group or individual health insurance and need health insurance quotes, contact Insurance Enterprise at 888-350-6605. Speak to a licensed agent and find out more about how you can get an affordable health insurance plan.