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The Affordable Care Act (ACA)

The ACA has required members to become more familiar with various health coverage terms and phrases. One term is “Open Enrollment Period.” This is the period of time when individuals may be able to enroll in a new health plan or make changes to existing coverage.

If you are a Wellmark member who buys your health insurance directly from us or through an agent, you may have enrolled or made changes during the Open Enrollment Period. This period started Oct. 1, 2013, and was extended through March 31, 2014. The next proposed Open Enrollment Period is Nov. 15, 2014, through Feb. 15, 2015.

If you have health coverage through your employer, you may have your own Open Enrollment Period with its own set of dates in which you must enroll or make changes to your coverage. Ask your employer if you have questions.
































when life happens

When LIFE happens

When your life changes, your health insurance can
change with you

Life changes. When it does, be sure you have your health insurance needs on your radar. There are life events that may happen to you and your family throughout the year that may qualify you for a Special Enrollment Period. Life events may allow you to change or add to your existing health coverage.


How quickly do I need to take advantage of making changes or adding to my coverage?

The time limits vary. With some life events, you will have up to 60 days to make a change to your health coverage. With other events, you may have only 31 days. That’s why you should always keep your health coverage and changing needs on your radar.

What do I need to do after I have a life event?

If you purchased an Individual and Family Plan, you will need to complete a Contract Change Form for life events. You can find a link to “Forms” under the Member section at the bottom of

If your health plan coverage is through your employer…
then notify your employer of the life event. In most cases, you can contact Wellmark Customer Service to add a newborn to your plan. You will be asked for the baby’s name, gender, date of birth and primary care provider.


Don’t risk being without the coverage you need

Contact Wellmark as soon as you have a life event. You should also contact your agent (if you purchased an Individual and Family Plan) or your employer.

Birth or adoption of a child
Addition of a foster child
Addition of a stepchild
Dependent resuming full-time student status
Addition of natural child by court order
Job loss
Return from military service
Court-ordered coverage

Additional events may qualify you for a Special Enrollment Period. These events vary based on how you purchased your health insurance (as an individual or through your employer).


Wellmark is here to help

Today, you have the security of knowing you have Wellmark coverage. But there are certain life events that could change your health insurance tomorrow, including job loss, divorce, or aging off of your
parent’s coverage.

If you find yourself in the market for health insurance, contact a Wellmark agent directly at 800-722-1795 (Iowa) or 877-877-8414 (South Dakota). You can also visit or find a local agent at

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