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MNsure Announces One-Week Special Enrollment Period to Help Minnesotans Take Advantage of Recently Enacted Premium Relief

1/28/2017 2:00:00 PM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

New Deadline is Open to All Minnesotans, Only Available at MNsure.org

St. Paul—Today MNsure announced a one-week special enrollment period (SEP) to give Minnesotans additional time to purchase health insurance and benefit from a new law that provides an automatic 25 percent reduction in health insurance premiums for the more than 125,000 Minnesotans facing significant premium increases in the individual market. The SEP will run from Wednesday, February 1, 2017, through Wednesday, February 8, 2017. It is open to all Minnesotans; however, they must purchase health insurance through the MNsure website.

"This is good news for Minnesotans," said MNsure CEO Allison O'Toole. "Given how close enactment of the premium relief bill was to the deadline for open enrollment we believe Minnesotans needed more time to benefit from this important opportunity to lower their monthly health insurance bill by 25 percent."

The current open enrollment period is scheduled to end on January 31; however, this SEP extends the time Minnesotans have to shop for health insurance by one additional week. Health insurance purchased during this SEP is effective March 1, 2017.

Because MNsure is a state-based exchange it has the authority to declare a special enrollment period under exceptional circumstances. The new law, signed with only five days remaining in the current open enrollment period, presented exceptional circumstances because it did not offer Minnesotans enough time to: 1) become aware of and 2) benefit from this new subsidy.

On December 7, 2016, Governor Dayton requested that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant an extension for the current open enrollment period. That request was denied; however, last week on January 24, 2017, Governor Dayton asked the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to reconsider his request for an extension. That request is still pending.

The premium relief bill passed by the Minnesota Legislature and signed by Governor Dayton appropriates $312 million to provide consumers who purchase health insurance in the individual market and do not receive advanced premium tax credits, an automatic 25 percent discount on their monthly health insurance premiums. The discount will be applied automatically by health insurance companies and does not require additional action by Minnesotans.

For more information on this special enrollment period please see these /shop-compare/premium-rebates/index.jspfrequently asked questions.

The 2017 open enrollment period began on November 1, 2016, and ends on January 31, 2017. Minnesotans eligible for Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare can enroll year round. As of February 2016, 96 percent of Minnesotans have health coverage—the highest percentage in state history.

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