December 8, 2015

Administration Won’t Offer Special Enrollment Period This Tax Season

The Wall Street Journal  (12/8, A2, Radnofsky, Subscription Publication) reports that Federal officials said Monday that uninsured people who do not get coverage by the end of the ACA’s enrollment period on Jan. 31 will not be given an extension to avoid the penalty for not having coverage. In a blog post, Kevin Counihan, chief executive of, wrote, “A Special Enrollment Period around the April 15 tax filing deadline won’t be offered this year. If you don’t enroll by then, you could have to wait another year to get coverage and may have to pay the fee when you file your 2016 income taxes.”

CNBC  (12/8) reports that in the two previous ACA enrollment periods, people who didn’t know about the penalty for going without insurance until they filed their income taxes “were granted a grace period that let them sign up late.” CNBC notes that fewer than 144,000 people in states using the Federal marketplace took advantage of the special enrollment period last year. Meanwhile, Administration officials said Monday that they are seeing enrollments pick up ahead of a Dec. 15 deadline to buy coverage effective Jan. 1. HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell tweeted: “Last Monday-Friday were our top five days for new consumers signing-up to date this Open Enrollment.”

The Washington Examiner  (12/8) also reports the story.