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Small Business Employee Benefits and HR Blog

Annual Open Enrollment Periods 2015 - 2020 [Chart]

There are now annual open enrollment periods for guaranteed-issue individual health insurance. The chart below displays the annual open enrollment periods for 2015 through 2020.

Chart of Annual Open Enrollment Periods (2015 - 2020)

COVERAGE YEAR

ANNUAL OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD

2015

November 15, 2014 – February 15, 2015

2016

November 1, 2015 - January 31, 2016

2017

November 1, 2016 - January 31, 2017

2018

November 1, 2017 - December 15, 2017

2019

November 1, 2018 - December 15, 2018

2020

November 1, 2019 - December 15, 2019

Note: These dates are current as of May 10, 2017. Dates may change. 

What are the Annual Open Enrollment Periods?

Chart of Annual Open Enrollment Periods

As of 2014, you can only enroll in guaranteed issue individual health insurance during limited annual or special enrollment periods defined by the federal government.

The purpose of these enrollment periods is to control costs - it keeps people from waiting until they get sick to purchase health insurance.

There are two types of enrollment periods: (1) open enrollment periods; and (2) special enrollment periods.

As the chart above shows, the annual enrollment period for coverage in 2015 begins November 15, 2014 and extends through February 15, 2015. During this time, you can purchase any health plan available on the individual market.

If you fail to purchase health insurance coverage during the annual enrollment period, you will be unable to purchase coverage until the following year unless you qualify for a special enrollment period.

And, if you miss the deadline you may have to pay a penalty for not having insurance. In 2015, the penalty is $325 per person up to a maximum of three times that amount for a family ($975), or 2% of household income if greater. 

The Comprehensive Guide to the Small Business HRA