Can You Cancel Your Health Insurance Policy?

Can You Cancel Your Health Insurance Policy? text overlaying image of a person ripping a contract in half So, you’ve decided it’s time to cut ties with your health insurance plan, but can you cancel your policy? The answer is both yes and no. You can cancel your health insurance, but if you do it at the wrong time or without a backup plan ready to go you could face fines or massive coverage gaps.

When To Cancel Your Health Plan

It’s best to cancel your health insurance policy once you have a replacement ready to take its place. If you don’t, you will have coverage gaps, leaving you vulnerable in the event of a health emergency. If you are looking to make the switch,Open Enrollment Period (OEP) is the best time to look into a different health insurance plan. The only time you can switch to a new health insurance plan outside of the OEP is if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). You qualify for an SEP if:


  • You just got married
  • Filed for divorce
  • Just had a baby
  • You or your spouse got a new job, losing your group health insurance coverage
  • You’re moving outside of your coverage area
  • Your current plan is no longer offering coverage in your area
  • Your current health insurance company is out of business

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The Right Way To Cancel Your Private Health Plan

It’s important to cancel your health insurance plan properly so that there is no confusion or loose ends. Below are the steps you can take to cancel your plan the right way.

Call your health insurance company

If you have health insurance through the Marketplace, you can login to your account and terminate the plan’s coverage. If you need help canceling your plan online, you call their customer service line. When you’re canceling a private health insurance plan, you can contact your insurance company directly. Your health insurance company’s phone number is printed right on your policy, health insurance card, and premium bills. Your health insurance provider may let you cancel over the phone. Occasionally, they may request that you fax or mail them additional documentation such as a confirmation letter.

Follow Your Plan’s Cancellation Process

Every health insurance provider has a cancellation procedure you must adhere to, such as ensuring your policy end dates are accurate to avoid a lapse in coverage. During your online or phone cancellation, an insurance agent will confirm the steps you have to take to successfully cancel your health insurance plan. Note the name of the representative and any cancellation confirmation numbers. This is important in the event that there are any procedure errors during the cancellation you’ll be able to quickly prove when the policy was ended.

Ask About Premium Refunds and Check Your Bank 

If you paid your plan in full for the year and want to cancel it before it expires, ask your health insurance company if it will reimburse you for the months you’ve already paid for but have not used yet. Many insurers will issue a refund for the remaining time on your policy. Check your bank statements after your new health insurance coverage begins to ensure that the canceled plan is no longer in effect and charging your account. You’ll also want to make sure that the new policy is active and has taken the first payment if you have one.

Check Your Active Health Coverage

Don’t cancel your old policy until you’ve gotten a new one and reviewed the coverage start date. Make sure the active coverage periods don’t overlap, as it’s illegal to submit claims to two separate major medical policies. You’ll also want to check your monthly health allowance if your employer reimburses you for your insurance premium or other out-of-pocket medical expenses through a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA) or health insurance stipend. This amount may affect your desired premium payment and the types of medical expenses you may get. Additionally, check the type of HRA your company offers. Integrated HRAs supplement employer-sponsored health insurance plans by helping to pay for deductibles, copayments, medical services, and other out-of-pocket costs, but cannot reimburse health insurance premiums.

Know Your Rights

Every state has consumer protection laws and insurance regulators who can help you with questions or complaints regarding your individual coverage. Your state laws may address health coverage requirements, prompt payment of claims, access to specific specialists, and certain treatment coverage. These protection laws apply to all plans, whether individual coverage or employer-provided health insurance, in order to safeguard your access to health services. If you submit false information on your health insurance application, your policy could be canceled. However, they cannot terminate your coverage if you made an honest error on your application. If you have unpaid premiums, your provider can terminate your coverage. In the majority of instances, your health insurance provider must give you at least 30 days notice before canceling your coverage due to missed monthly payments. This notice affords you the opportunity to appeal the decision or find a more cost-effective alternative.

How To Cancel Your Group Health Plan

You may need to cancel your employer-sponsored health insurance plan, even if you remain employed with the company. For example, your spouse or domestic partner’s employer may offer a more affordable plan option. Canceling an employer-sponsored plan is fairly easy if you follow these steps:


  • Contact HR – Your company’s human resources department will be able to answer your questions and will be your primary contact through the entire cancellation process
  • Ask about dates – Make sure you know the cancellation date, and make sure your new coverage will begin on or right after that date. You don’t want your plans to overlap. 
  • Complete the paperwork – If you’re opting out of your group plan early, there will likely be a bunch of paperwork that comes with it. Make sure you complete, sign, and submit these forms on time 

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Cancellation Penalties

In most instances, there is no fee for canceling a health insurance policy. However, some insurance providers do charge a cancellation fee. This would be specified in your plan’s terms and conditions, so you are aware of this policy before you buy it. While the federal government no longer imposes a tax penalty for not having health insurance, some states do. The District of Columbia, California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Rhode Island have penalties for not having health insurance. Each state has its own system of fees. Check your state’s regulations before you cancel your health insurance, as you may qualify for an exemption from the tax penalties.

When Can’t I Cancel My Health Plan?

There are very few circumstances where you’re not able to cancel a health plan early. Some employer group health plans are paid for out of your paycheck prior to taxes being taken out. These plans are called Section 125 plans. They can be an excellent way to save money on insurance and taxes. If you have one of these plans, however, you can only change or cancel it during the Open Enrollment Period, or if you have a qualifying life event. Your HR department will be able to let you know if that’s the case with your group plan.


Additionally, if you are under 30 and have a short-term or catastrophic insurance plan, you may not be able to cancel your coverage early. Many of these plans are bought for a specific period of time and can’t be canceled early. Make sure you understand the terms and conditions of these plans before enrolling.

Why You Need Health Insurance

So far we’ve talked about how to switch health insurance plans, but we haven’t mentioned people canceling health insurance with no plans to get another plan. We know that sometimes when money is tight you start cutting expenses and health insurance is one of the first things to go. Especially if you’re healthy you think “well, I don’t use it, I don’t need to pay for it”, but that way of thinking can be detrimental.  While being healthy is great, the objective here is to maintain that health throughout one’s life. Unfortunately, neither disease nor accidents can be predicted. Without health insurance, you are responsible for all of your medical expenses. Which poses a substantial threat to your financial and medical stability.

Health Benefits Of Health Insurance

The greatest benefit of health insurance is access to necessary medical care. Health insurance provides access to a comprehensive network of physicians, specialists, hospitals, and laboratories. This network collaborates with you and each other to help you prioritize wellness and prevention. In fact, the majority of healthcare plans include free preventative services, such as immunizations and screenings, to help you stay healthy and avoid illness and its consequences.


Additionally, the Affordable Care Act requires Marketplace plans to cover pre-existing conditions. This means that even if you already have a chronic illness, you will not be denied coverage or charged more for your pre-existing condition. Since you’ll have regular access to the necessary doctors and specialists, your healthcare plan will also assist you in managing the care for any chronic illnesses you may be living with. 


Your health insurance provides you with the most effective means of maintaining your health. Having access to this type of continuous care can ultimately result in a longer and healthier life. In fact the mortality rate of adults between 17-64 without health insurance is 40% higher than those without insurance, according to the National Library of Medicine.

Financial Benefits of Health Insurance

Health insurance protects not only your health but also your finances. With an insurance plan, you will have less out-of-pocket healthcare costs, as your insurance will cover your medical services for a monthly premium. You will also be healthier, which will lower your out-of-pocket costs. Consider how much you would pay out of pocket for an unexpected medical emergency Which could easily cost you thousands of dollars. 

Working With An EZ Agent

It can be frustrating to organize your own health insurance because there are so many variables to take into account. Why not let a professional do all the hard work for you, for free? A licensed EZ insurance agent can describe the advantages and disadvantages of each plan, and help you choose the best plan for your needs. EZ agents can save you hundreds annually on health insurance premiums. This is accomplished by our ability to search both on and off market for the most cost-effective plans. We can also locate and apply any discounts you may be eligible for. And we don’t stop at finding you a plan; we also assist with plan maintenance after the fact! We can assist you in filing claims with your insurance company and renewing your policy when the time comes. To begin, enter your zip code in the box below or call one of our licensed agents at 877-670-3575.

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What Health Insurance Protections Are There for Domestic Abuse Survivors?

On average, nearly 20 people are physically abused by an intimate partner every minute in the United States. This equates to almost 10 million people each year suffering domestic abuse. The sad reality is that many people in this situation feel like there’s no way out. And feel that they can’t manage alone or start fresh because their partner controls every part of their lives. But it is possible to seek help and start a new life, despite the incredible stress of taking that step forward. 

If you’re worried about starting over, it might be helpful to know that you can enroll in a health insurance plan when leaving a domestic abuse situation. Meaning you’ll have one less thing to stress heart wrapped in white bandage with the article title placed on top

Special Enrollment Period

A Special Enrollment Period (SEP) is a 60-day window when people can sign up for new health insurance coverage (or change existing coverage) outside of the annual Open Enrollment Period (OEP). Various situations (known as qualifying life events) can trigger a SEP, including leaving a domestic violence situation.  

Since 2015, victims of domestic violence and spousal abandonment can apply for health insurance at any point during the year. Not only that, but they will face fewer restrictions than they would with a regular Special Enrollment Period. This SEP is available to both men and women and does not require documentation.

Domestic Violence As a Qualifying Life Event

human figure yelling at a sad human figure
Several forms of domestic abuse qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.

How do you qualify for this SEP? According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), experiencing any of the following will open up a Special Enrollment Period:

  • Physical abuse
  • Psychological abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse, including efforts by the perpetrator to control, isolate, humiliate, intimidate, or undermine your ability to reason independently
  • Spousal abandonment, which means you are unable to locate your spouse after trying diligently and “taking all facts and circumstances into account”

Need Help?

If you are a victim of domestic violence or abuse, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233. And if you are looking to find your own health insurance plan, call the call center hotline at (800) 318-2596. Tell the representative about your domestic violence or spousal abandonment situation, so you can qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. After you are granted a SEP, you have 60 days to enroll in a plan. Once you’re ready to take that step and look for a plan of your own, come to EZ.Insure. We offer a wide range of health insurance plans from top-rated insurance companies in every state. And because we work with so many companies, and can offer all of the plans available in your area. We can find you a plan that saves you a lot of money – even hundreds of dollars – even if you don’t qualify for a subsidy. There is no obligation, or hassle, just free quotes on all available plans in your area. To get free instant quotes, simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or to speak to a local agent, call 888-350-1890.

Missed The OEP? Don’t Worry, You Can Still Get Great Health Insurance!

Life can get hectic, and it’s easy to forget about the little things – or even the big things, like getting health insurance! And if you were one of the people who completely forgot to look into health insurance during the Open Enrollment Period (OEP), you’re probably stressing out about what you can do. But you don’t have to stress about it! There are ways to enroll in a health insurance plan outside of the OEP, so you don’t have to wait until next year to find a plan. In fact, you can still find an affordable plan that will keep you covered until the next Open Enrollment Period, with the help of an EZ agent.a clear hourglass that indicates time is up on a black background with the article title

Why the Open Enrollment Period Exists

Before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed in 2010, insurance companies could raise insurance premiums. Or refuse coverage to a person based on their medical history and conditions. But the Affordable Care Act made it illegal for insurance companies to deny coverage. Or charge more based on someone’s pre-existing conditions. But in order to ensure that people don’t only purchase health insurance once they get sick, the ACA set up a specific time during the year when people are allowed to purchase health insurance on the ACA Marketplace – the Open Enrollment Period. 

Your Options Outside of the Open Enrollment Period

While it might sound like there’s no way to get health insurance now that the OEP is over, there are actually a few ways. For example: 

A Special Enrollment Period Based on Qualifying Life Events

If you experience a major change in your life, known as a qualifying life event, you will be eligible for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). Which allows you 60 days to enroll in a health insurance plan or change your current plan. What exactly are the qualifying life events that trigger a SEP?


A qualifying life event is a significant change in your life that would make you eligible to enroll outside of an Open Enrollment Period. These changes include:

  • Getting  married
  • Getting  divorced (specifically, if you were getting your health insurance through your spouse’s employer)
  • Having a baby, adopting a baby, or placing a child up for adoption or into foster care
  • Losing your spouse/partner, and being left without health insurance
  • Your spouse/partner losing their job (specifically if you had coverage through their employer)
  • Losing your job and employer-based coverage
  • No longer being a full-time employee eligible for workplace coverage
  • Moving outside your plan’s coverage area
  • Leaving jail/prison
  • Gaining citizenship

Short-Term Plans

illustration of two hands holding a clock on an orange background
Short term plans are cheaper than ACA plans!

If you do not qualify for a Special Enrollment Period, the next step is to consider a short-term plan. These plans are much cheaper than ACA plans but do not offer as much coverage. They are worth considering, though: short-term healthcare plans provide fast, flexible insurance with many benefits. You can pick your deductible amount from many options. And you can drop coverage without a penalty for a long-term insurance option.


You can get one of these policies at any time and it will cover you for 364 days. It’s important to note that they do not have to cover pre-existing conditions. So premiums can be based on your medical history. 


These plans are considered minimum essential coverage because they are not regulated by the Affordable Care Act. Because they are not subject to ACA rules, these plans do not have to cover all the ACA’s 10 essential health benefits, which include:

  • Ambulatory patient services
  • Emergency services
  • Hospitalization
  • Pregnancy, maternity, and newborn care (both before and after birth)
  • Mental health and substance use disorder services, including behavioral health treatment
  • Prescription drugs
  • Rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices
  • Laboratory services
  • Preventive and wellness services, and chronic disease management
  • Pediatric services

How EZ Can Help

Missing the Open Enrollment Period is more common than you might think, so don’t feel alone. And even if you missed it, you don’t have to go uninsured. EZ.Insure wants to make sure that you are protected from any catastrophic and unexpected healthcare emergencies. We will compare all available short-term plans in your area to find a plan that gives you the most coverage with the most savings. And because we just want to make sure you are properly insured, we offer all of our services at no cost to you. We will provide you with your own personal agent who will go over your needs and find a great short-term plan that can temporarily insure you until the next Open Enrollment Period. To get free quotes, simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or to speak to a licensed agent, call 888-350-1890.

Have Pre-Existing Conditions? Your Guide to Getting a Medicare Supplement Plan

Having a pre-existing condition used to be a serious problem for people looking for health insurance. Fortunately, the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010 changed that for people purchasing private insurance. But what about Medicare beneficiaries? Medicare Parts A and B cover anyone who paid into these programs, but what about Medicare Supplement Plans? Can you be denied for these plans – or charged more for one – if you have a pre-existing condition? With pre-existing conditions affecting an estimated 53.8 million adults 65 and older, this is an important question.article title and clipboard that says pre-existing conditions on a blue background

What Is Considered a Pre-Existing Condition?

Almost any illness or injury you had prior to enrolling in your insurance plan can be considered a pre-existing condition. The list is long but some of the most common ones are cancer, diabetes, end stage renal disease, and stroke. Not all pre-existing conditions are as serious, though: things like asthma, sleep apnea, and lupus can be pre-existing, too.

When it comes to Medicare specifically, for a condition to be considered a pre-existing, you have to be diagnosed and begin treatment before your Medicare start date. Even if you don’t receive a diagnosis before enrollment, your condition can still be count as pre-existing. For example, if you have a condition with emergent symptoms that the average person would have already had treated, your insurer can classify it as pre-existing. 

What Are Medicare Supplement Plans? 

Medicare Supplement Plans are insurance plans offered by private companies. They help cover the out-of-pocket costs of Original Medicare. While Medicare covers most of your health services it won’t cover everything: for example, Medicare Part B only covers 80% of medical services, leaving you to pay a 20% coinsurance. But if you have a Medicare Supplement Plan, this coverage will kick in and pick up the remaining costs.

Medicare Supplement Plans cover a number of things like copays, coinsurance, and deductibles, meaning you’ll only have to pay a low monthly premium. Some Medicare Supplement Plans even cover care you receive outside of the country, which Original Medicare won’t cover at all. 

Can I Get a Medicare Supplement Plan with a Pre-Existing Condition?medical record paperwork on desk

Fortunately, the answer to this is yes! You can get a Medicare Supplement Plan even with pre-existing health issues. Companies that offer these plans are usually able to use underwriting to determine your eligibility. Luckily there is a way around it. It all depends on when you sign up for your plan.

The best time to get a Medicare Supplement Plan without worrying about being denied or paying more for your plan because of health issues is during your Medicare Open Enrollment Period. This period begins the first day of the month your Medicare Part B. And is in effect and lasts for 6 months. 

Your Open Enrollment Period is the best time to get Medicare Supplement Insurance with pre-existing conditions. During this time, you have something called a guaranteed issue. This means that insurers have to offer you the best rates available. And they can’t deny you based on your health.

If you miss your Open Enrollment Period, you can still get a Medicare Supplement Plan.  But you may run into problems like high premiums or a 6-month waiting period. This means that you will have to pay for expenses related to your pre-existing condition for 6 months. Once that waiting period is over, your Medicare Supplement Plan will start covering your costs as normal.

Some states do offer additional enrollment periods though, so check with your state’s Medicare office. Additionally, if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period, you can skip the pre-existing condition waiting period.

How Do I Qualify for a Special Enrollment Period?a bunch of gray question marks piled together with one blue and one orange question mark in the pile

 If you’ve missed your Open Enrollment Period, you can still get a plan with the better rates. There are a number of circumstances that can trigger a Special Enrollment Period. During which you can get a new Medicare Supplement Plan:

  • Your employer’s supplemental insurance ends, or benefits are reduced
  • Your Medicare Advantage Plan changes or ends its terms
  • You move out of your plan’s coverage area
  • Your Medicare Supplement Plan insurer commits fraud
  • You are utilizing your “trial right” within 12 months of applying for a Medicare Advantage Plan for the first time

Need Help?

Enrolling in a Medicare Supplement Insurance plan with pre-existing conditions can be tricky. If you need help navigating the enrollment process, EZ.Insure is here to help! Our highly trained insurance agents are always available to help you with any questions. We also provide free instant quotes. Simply put your zip code in the bar above, or you can speak to an agent directly, just call 888-753-7207.

Co-written by Brianna Hartnett

Can You Get Health Insurance After An Accident?

Ah – life is just full of surprises isn’t it? It would be so much easier if we had a crystal ball telling us exactly what kind of health insurance we should get and when. Who wouldn’t want to not pay for insurance until it was needed?

There may be years, even decades, where you don’t need to go to the doctor or have an injury, and you think you don’t need insurance. Sadly, life happens and unexpected things and accidents occur. Let’s just say you’re going about your day and you get some pain and have to rush to the hospital. Once there you find out you have appendicitis and need an appendectomy. A few weeks later a bill arrives in your mailbox for thousands of dollars. If you don’t have a health insurance plan this trip to the hospital could wreak havoc on your bank account and credit. Hopefully you never find yourself in this scenario but it makes you wonder…what if you don’t have health insurance? What do you do? Can you retroactively be covered if you buy a plan after you leave the hospital? Let’s find out.

crystal ball
Since you can’t predict the future, be sure you have a health insurance plan that fits your needs.

The Short Answer

emergency room
Getting health insurance after an injury will not cover bills that have already been incurred.

Sadly if you do not have insurance at the time of an accident you cannot sign up for health insurance coverage after being injured and incur a bill from a healthcare provider. It makes sense that this is not possible because otherwise no one would buy a health insurance policy unless it was absolutely necessary. There is an open enrollment period in the fall where people can enroll in a health insurance plan for the next calendar year. There are exceptions to this if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. Some life events such as getting married or having a baby would qualify you to enroll outside of the open enrollment period, but in general you should get a plan during open enrollment to cover yourself in the event of an accident or to get coverage for wellness checks.

Finding a Plan That’s Right For you

Talk to an EZ Agent today to find a health insurance plan that works for you.

Opting out of health insurance is extremely risky. With one accident you could put yourself in financial distress for years to come. This is why health insurance, even a basic plan with a high deductible would be better than nothing. At EZ we have agents that work with top-rated insurance companies in the nation and are able to find a plan that works for you. Don’t find yourself in a position that would create financial hardship because of an accident. Simply enter your zip code in the bar above to get free, instant, no obligation quotes, or to speak to a local agent, call 888-350-1890.

What Happens If I Don’t Do Anything During The Open Enrollment Period?

The ACA Open Enrollment Period only comes around once a year, usually lasting from November 1- December 15, although this year the deadline has been extended to January 15. During this period, you can enroll in a new health insurance plan, or make changes to your current  plan. If you’re happy with your current plan, though, you might opt to not do anything at all during the Open Enrollment Period – but not doing anything can have certain consequences, depending on your situation.

You Could Get Stuck With Your Current Plan

This might not necessarily be a bad thing if you are happy with your current plan, but if your plan isn’t quite right for you, you will unfortunately be stuck with it until the next Open Enrollment Period opens up again.

You’ll Miss The Opportunity To Change Your Plan

If you don’t take the opportunity to review your current plan and do nothing during the Open Enrollment Period, you won’t be able to change your plan. What this really means is that your health insurance might:man looking at laptop frustrated while on the phone

  • Not provide enough coverage for the following year, which will cost you money.
  • Have too much coverage that you don’t need, essentially leaving you to pay for insurance that you don’t need.
  • Be too expensive. If you don’t change your plan during the OEP, you’ll be stuck with the rise in rates and costs for the following year. 

Options Are Limited Afterwards

If you don’t have health insurance and are looking to enroll in a plan, but you do nothing during the Open Enrollment Period, you won’t be able to get a Marketplace or exchange health insurance plan – in other words, you won’t be able to get an ACA-compliant health plan. With that being said, you do have other options even if you miss the OEP, but you should be aware that they are very limited. For example, you can opt to get a short-term health insurance plan that covers the essentials and nothing more; this type of insurance is temporary and not ideal for those who require more comprehensive coverage, or have health conditions. Short term plans are not guaranteed issue, meaning they do not cover pre-existing conditions.

You Will Need To Qualify For an SEP

The only way to get an affordable health insurance plan that is ACA-compliant outside of the OEP is to qualify for a Special Enrollment Period, or SEP. A Special Enrollment Period is only available to those who have a qualifying life event, including: movers with boxes and a truck and houses in the background

  • Change in residence (moving to a different zip code or county)
  • Change in household size (having a baby or adopting a child, getting married, or getting divorced)
  • Loss of health insurance (losing employment, turning 26 and getting kicked off of a parent’s plan, or a death in the family)
  • Changes in income

Don’t Do Nothing…

Compare plans! There’s no harm in comparing plans and seeing your options before the Open Enrollment Period ends. But we get that it can be a headache to try and research all the different plans around, so we’re here to help! Our highly trained agents will take the time to talk with you and thoroughly explain all of your options. Once you are ready to enroll, they will search through all the plans in your area and find the right plan for you, making sure the plan fits your needs and budget. EZ always provides you with your own personal agent, so there’s never any need to worry about bouncing around from agent to agent or getting hassled by endless sales calls. To get started, enter your zip code in the bar above, or to speak to an agent directly, call 888-350-1890.