A letter was released on July 20, 2023, from the Departments of Labor, Health, and Human Services and the Treasury (Departments). This letter asks employers who sponsor group health plans to extend their HIPAA special enrollment period beyond the typical 60 days for individuals losing Medicaid or Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage.
The Departments claim that a large number of individuals will need more than 60 days to apply for other coverage after losing CHIP or Medicaid coverage. Many individuals do not realize they have lost coverage until they attempt to access care, and at that point, they could be beyond their special enrollment window. To remedy this issue, the federal Marketplace offers a temporary special enrollment period for those who lost Medicaid and CHIP coverage and apply for coverage by July 31, 2024.
Now, the Departments are requesting that employers take similar measures and extend their special enrollment period as well. It is important to note that this extension is not required.
Employers who choose to extend their special enrollment period must update their plan documents and communicate the extension with employees. Employers with fully insured health plans must confirm that the extension complies with enrollment requirements imposed by their carriers.
If you have any questions about extending your special enrollment period, please contact your dedicated Creative Benefits, Inc. account manager.