HHS delays 2015 marketplace open enrollment by 30 days

Posted by Tony Pugh on November 22, 2013 

The Obama administration is about to change another provision of the Affordable Care Act.

The latest change moves the start of marketplace open enrollment for 2015 from October 15, 2014 to November 15, 2014.

The 30-day delay means the enrollment period for 2015 coverage will end on January 15, 2015 instead of of December 7, 2014.

The move gives insurers more time to assess and evaluate their costs and experiences from the 2014 plan year - including late enrolees and the sign-up rates for young adults - before setting rates for 2015.  

The technical problems with Healthcare.gov and President Obama's decision to allow people to renew or extend their cancelled 2013 policies have complicated insurers' previous enrollment and cost projections for the 2014 plan year.

 Insurers will now have until the end of May 2014 to submit applications to offer marketplace health plans in 2015. Coverage for 2014 will not be affected by the change.

Congressional Republicans say the move conveniently moves information about 2015 marketplace premiums beyond the 2014 November elections.

"That means that if premiums go through the roof in the first year of Obamacare, no one will know about it until after the election," said Sem. Charles Grassley, R-IA. "This is clearly a cynical political move by the Obama Administration to use, any means necessary, to keep this program afloat and hide key information from voters."

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