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Colleen Callahan talks about Open Enrollment

Jan 01, 2016 01:31PM ● By Colleen Callahan

After such a deadline-heavy fall insurance season, it is difficult to comprehend it is time to start looking at the year ahead.  We pride ourselves on our service, but during October, November, and December, it became increasingly more difficult to return calls in a timely manner.  I hope that fall 2016 will be a little easier!

Here are two new year reminders related to insurance:

On January first, your health insurance deductible and out of pocket maximums reset.

If you anticipate changes in income and you have Covered California, you must submit an update. To report changes, call Covered California at (800) 300-1506 or log in to your online account at

There is still time to apply for individual health insurance for 2016. Remember, there are tax penalties for not having coverage.

·  January 15, 2016: Last day to enroll in or change plans for new coverage to start February 1, 2016.

·  January 31, 2016: 2016 Open Enrollment ends. Enrollments or changes between January 16 and January 31 take effect March 1, 2016.

I know one Medicare supplement company has announced rate changes for March 2016.  Please call me if you would like to review your plan.  During your birthday month, you can be guaranteed the opportunity to obtain other, potentially less expensive coverage.  Give yourself a present this year and review your Medicare Supplement!

Finally, a reader asked how long you need to keep records. With regard to tax records, that is a good question for your CPA.  As for medical records, health insurance applications no longer ask medical questions, but life and long-term care insurance applications ask for current and recent health issues as well as health-related issues from the past five or ten years.  Normally, the physician provides copies when requested by the insurance company.

Colleen Callahan CLU, CASL, LUTCF

[email protected]