If you haven’t already, add these items to your December to-do list:
- Shop and enroll in a 2015 health insurance plan
- Cancel your 2014 plan if you switched to something new for 2015.
Do not get stuck paying two health insurance premiums in January. There are various cancelation scenarios that could apply as you move from 2014 to 2015 coverage. The correct action will vary depending on where you live and where you buy your health insurance coverage.
The brief guide below is a starting point. Make sure you contact your state or federal health insurance exchange, health insurance agent and/or health insurance company for help with your specific situation.
You switched from one state or federal exchange plan to another
If you purchased your 2014 health insurance coverage through a state-based or federally facilitated health insurance exchange and switched to another exchange-based plan for 2015, the exchange should notify your old insurer. However, you may want to double check.
Contact your state or federal health insurance exchange to see if there is any additional action required of you. It would also be wise to contact your 2014 health insurance company to confirm your cancelation and ensure your automatic payments will end with your coverage.
If you qualify for premium tax credits and/or cost-sharing subsidies, remember to report changes in financial status and household size to your state or federal exchange. Failure to do so may mean you receive more financial assistance than you’re eligible for and must repay the IRS at tax time; it could also mean you qualify for more financial assistance than you receive and miss out on lower premiums and out-of-pocket amounts.
You switched from a state or federal exchange plan to private marketplace
If you decided to buy health insurance in the private marketplace for 2015 but purchased 2014 coverage from a state or federal exchange, you will need to contact that exchange to cancel your 2014 coverage and any financial assistance you received. You may be instructed to log in to your state or federal exchange account and terminate coverage from there.
Those enrolled through the federal exchange must log in to their account, select “My Plans and Programs” and then the red “End/Terminate All Coverage” button or call 800-318-2596.
You switched from a private marketplace plan to a state or federal exchange plan
If you decide to move from a private marketplace plan to a state or federal exchange plan for 2015, you must contact your 2014 health insurance company and notify them of your decision to end coverage. Different companies may have different cancelation processes. Some may send out a form; others may want a handwritten and signed note. Call the member services number on the back of your health insurance card to find out what action you must take.
Also, if you believe you qualify for financial assistance and want to receive it for your exchange-based plan, you will have to apply through your state or federal exchange. Be ready to provide documentation of your income (e.g., pay stubs and tax returns).
You switched plans in the private marketplace
To determine the correct cancellation process, contact your old health insurance company by calling the member services number on the back of your health insurance card.
When in doubt, contact your health insurance company.
Again, if you are uncertain you correctly canceled your plan or are unsure how to cancel it, contact your health insurance company.
Do you still need to buy 2015 coverage?
Visit HealthCare.com to browse plans in your area and use the subsidy calculator to see if you qualify for financial assistance. If you do, visit your state or federal exchange to shop and enroll in 2015 coverage—and be sure to cancel your 2014 plan.
If you need help selecting the right health insurance for the new year, call 877-275-0485 to speak with a licensed health insurance agent from one of our trusted insurance partners.
 Healthcare.gov. “Changing Health Plans After You Enroll.” https://www.healthcare.gov/apply-and-enroll/change-after-enrolling/.