What is a qualifying event?

A qualifying life event (QLE) is a change in your circumstances that can make you eligible to obtain health coverage during a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). Typically, you can only enroll in an Individual or family plan during the annual Open Enrollment Period (OEP), which goes from Nov. 1 to Jan. 15. There are different qualifying life events, including a loss of qualifying health coverage, aging off a parent's plan, birth of a child and adoption.

Is marriage a qualifying event for health coverage?

Yes. Marriage, legal separation and divorce are all qualifying events that make you eligible to change your health plan. The Special Enrollment Period will start on the day of the marriage and last for 60 days. During that time, you can sign up for an Individual or family plan through the Marketplace.

Adding a spouse to health coverage after a marriage

If one spouse had health coverage for at least one day in the 60 days before the marriage, the other spouse may have the opportunity to join their plan.

If both spouses previously had health coverage, they could decide whether to keep their existing plans or join their spouse's plan. There are several factors they'll want to consider, including the cost of the plans, coverage and participation with existing health care providers.

How long does it take to get coverage after a marriage?

Your health coverage will begin on the first day of the month after you enroll. For instance, if you enroll on April 1, or April 30, your health coverage will start on May 1.

Do health plan companies verify marriage?

Yes, your health plan provider will need an official document on record that proves the date the marriage took place.

Obtaining proof of marriage for health coverage

Several documents are accepted as proof of marriage for health coverage. They include:

  • Marriage certificates and licenses
  • Public records
  • Religious documents
  • Affidavits that have been signed and dated by an officiant or official witness

A copy of one of those documents can be mailed or sent electronically to your health plan provider. If you don't have one of those documents available, we recommend you reach out to your health plan company.

It's a good idea to send the documents soon after your marriage because the 60-day Special Enrollment Period will begin on the day of the marriage. Acting quickly will allow for any issues with documents or mailing to be resolved without cutting too close to the deadline.

How to choose a new health plan after marriage?

Why choose Priority Health?

We are a Michigan-based company that is deeply rooted in our community and we continue to be recognized as a leader in quality, customer service, transparency and product innovation. Our plans are centered around improving our member's health while keeping the cost affordable.

MyPriority® Individual and family plans give you more for your money and do more for your health. With lots of extra benefits in every MyPriority plan, you can take control of your health at an affordable price. 

Priority Health also has one of the largest networks of primary care doctors across lower Michigan, including metro Detroit.

See if qualify for additional savings

Are you changing health care plans after marriage? See our plans and prices to find the right one for you. When you get a quote, we'll check to see if you qualify for financial assistance through a tax subsidy. If you have questions or need help enrolling, you can chat or call an enrollment specialist at Priority Health.

Frequently asked questions

Will I lose my health coverage if I get married?

No, getting married does not require you to change your health plan. You can continue using your current health plan if you're happy with it.

Can you stay on your parent's health plan after marriage?

Yes, individuals can remain on their parent's health plan until the age of 26, even if they get married. Newlyweds should carefully consider their options to determine if remaining on their parents' plans or having a joint plan would grant necessary coverage at the best price.

Can married couples have separate health plans?

Yes, you and your spouse can have separate health plans or even plans with different providers, if you choose.

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