Tag Archives: Dates

Consumers Direct Insurance Services of New Mexico Releases Dates and Times for its Medicare Seminar Series

Albuquerque, New Mexico (PRWEB) October 08, 2014

Late enrollment penalties, donut holes, calendar year maximums, catastrophic coverage – oh my. Medicare sure sounds frightening but don’t fret. With a little knowledge you’ll find it’s not nearly as scary as you may think.

Consumers Direct Insurance Services (CDIS), Inc., an Independent, Authorized Senior General Agent for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico is gearing up for Medicare’s 2014 Annual Enrollment Period (AEP), which runs from October 15th through December 7th, with the release of its Medicare Seminar Series*.

CDIS’ Medicare Seminar Series, is a grassroots initiative that places experienced local insurance agents in a controlled learning environment for Medicare beneficiaries to gather essential plan benefit information while also providing a forum for answers to their questions.

“Consumers Direct Insurance Services of New Mexico is excited about its upcoming Medicare Seminar Series, because it gives us an opportunity to engage the local public and present all of the new plan options from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico,” said Scott Loochtan, President of Consumers Direct Insurance Services, Inc. “Trying to decipher all of this material on your own can be daunting and that is why we offer this complimentary service to make the process much easier.”

The Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) is the one time of year that Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in either a standalone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan (PDP) or Medicare Advantage (MA) plan can make a change for the next year.

“The AEP is the insurance agent’s tax season,” noted Loochtan. “Medicare beneficiaries all over the country have been eagerly awaiting this time of year to review and analyze their plans so that they can secure the best options to meet their needs in the upcoming year.”

CDIS’ insurance agents go through a stringent Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) and Medicare Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage (MA), continuing education and certification process each year in order to assist current and potential clients. This certification allows them to provide full service Medicare solutions while making themselves available in a variety of ways through technology, over the phone or in person appointments.

To register for one of CDIS of New Mexico’s Medicare Seminars please visit http://www.CDISofNM.com/seminars or call directly at 888.257.6640. There is limited seating for each seminar.

About Consumers Direct Insurance Services, Inc. (CDIS)

Consumers Direct Insurance Services, Inc., (CDIS), is an Independent, Authorized Senior General Agent for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas that were founded in an effort to bridge the gap between education and insurance. Headquartered in Riverwoods, IL, the company has an executive team with over 100 years’ experience that has been providing world-class healthcare guidance to over 20,000 active clients. For more information, please visit our state specific websites at http://www.CDISofNM.com, http://www.CDISofOK.com and http://www.CDISofTX.com.

*Not connected with or endorsed by the U.S. Government or the Federal Medicare program.

Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment, Key Dates and Qualifying Life Events

affordable care act open enrollment datesNow that the Affordable Care Act is in effect for millions of newly-covered Americans and will still be available for millions of others through March 31, there are some important Affordable Care Act open enrollment dates and information people need to know about the Obamacare law and the plans available through it. One of the biggest deadlines has already passed, which was January 1, when anyone who signed up for coverage by December 24 at midnight would be able to use their new insurance.

In general, Americans who enrolled in health insurance through the state or federal Obamacare exchanges between October 1 and December 24 had insurance coverage beginning on January 1. The only exception to that rule is for those enrollees who do not pay their first month’s premium by the deadline, which varies from state to state. The federal deadline to pay insurance premiums is January 10.

2014 Affordable Care Act Key Dates

January 10 – As mentioned above, insurance companies offering plans through the federal Obamacare website extended the payment deadline for the first month’s premium from December 31, 2013 to January 10, 2014. Some states set their deadlines earlier and others are giving their residents even more time to pay. People who do not submit their payments by their state’s deadline can still get their insurance effective on February 1.

January 15 – People who want their insurance coverage to begin on February 1 will need to enroll in a plan by this date. Their payments must be received by January 31.

January 31 – The Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan expires. This is a program that allowed people who were denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions to have health insurance until the Affordable Care Act open enrollment began. It was originally set to end on December 31, but the administration extended the deadline by one month to give sick people more time due to the technical issues with the health insurance website.

January 31 – Some people who are taking prescriptions under an old plan may lose their prescription coverage. The administration requested insurance companies allow consumers to be able to fill their prescriptions under their old plans through the end of January.

February 15 – People who want their insurance coverage to begin on March 1 will need to enroll in a plan by this date. Their payments must be received by the end of February.

March 15 – People who want their insurance coverage to begin on April 1 will need to enroll in a plan by this date. Their payments must be received by March 31.

March 31 – This is the very last day of Affordable Care Act open enrollment. All Americans who plan to enroll in an Obamacare plan in 2014 must sign up by this date. People who wait until March 16 to enroll will have their coverage go into effect on May 1.

March 31 – All Americans must have health insurance coverage by this date to avoid paying the Obamacare individual mandate. People who had their previous plans cancelled because they didn’t meet the ACA standards are exempt from this deadline. In addition, people who lose their insurance after this date will have three months to regain insurance before facing a fine. Medicaid and Medicare have rolling enrollment dates, so this deadline does not apply to those programs.

2014 Tax Day

April 15 – Tax day, but fines for noncompliance with the individual mandate will not be levied until April 2015.

2015 Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment Starts

November 15 – Affordable Care Act open enrollment for 2015 begins. People will have the option of enrolling insurance for 2015 or switching plans. Rate information for 2015 plans will be officially released at this time.

December 31 – People who were allowed to remain on noncompliant plans for 2014 will have to find other coverage by this date, as the one-year extension expires on December 31, 2014.

Obamacare Qualifying Events

The Affordable Care Act open enrollment period is the deadline when Americans can sign up for health insurance through Obamacare exchanges without experiencing a qualifying event. People who have an Obamacare qualifying life event are allowed to participate in a special enrollment period that falls outside of the regular Affordable Care Act open enrollment period.

Most enrollment periods for Obamacare qualifying life events last for 60 days after the date of the event. There are several events that are included in this category, which are:

  • The loss of health coverage due to a job loss, divorce, COBRA expiration, loss of Medicaid or CHIP eligibility or the decertification of a health plan. It is important to note that people who stop paying their premiums voluntarily are not eligible for a special enrollment period. In addition, people who lose coverage that does not meet the standards of the Affordable Care Act also do not qualify for a special enrollment period.
  • Marriage.
  • Having a baby or adopting a child.
  • Income changes that affect tax credit and cost-sharing reduction status.
  • Permanent moving to a new area that does not offer the current health plan.
  • Changes to citizenship status (people who gain lawful citizenship status in the United States have 60 days to enroll in an insurance plan through an Affordable Care Act exchange).

The entire country will be watching the healthcare system in the United States as these important Affordable Care Act dates come to pass. The Obama administration is hoping they will pass without the need for additional changes or delays to the law.


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