Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How is the Texas Bar Private Insurance Exchange different than healthcare.gov?
A: Applying through the Texas Bar Private Insurance Exchange allows for you to shop and compare all of the carriers in the private market at once and provides you with the advice of a licensed Benefits Counselor that has your individual needs in mind. You are also able to enroll in other exclusive benefits such as supplemental health, dental, vision, disability, etc. at the same time as your medical enrollment. This creates a one-stop-shop for all of your benefit needs. Your benefit elections are held in your personal exchange account where you are able to log back in and view your benefits at any time during the year.
Q: What are the important dates for enrolling in 2017 health coverage?
- November 1, 2016: Open Enrollment begins.
- December 15, 2016: Last day to enroll in or change plans for new coverage to start January 1, 2017.
- January 1, 2017: 2017 coverage starts for those who enroll or change plans by December 15.
- January 31, 2017: Open Enrollment ends. Enrollments or changes between January 16 and January 31 take effect March 1, 2017.
- After January 31, 2017: You can still buy a health plan if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.
Q: What information do I need to enroll?
A: For all family members that will be included in coverage you will need the dates of birth, social security numbers and premium payment. All carriers require that the initial premium payment is submitted upon applying. A carrier will not accept an application that does not have payment.
Q: How long do I have before I need to apply?
A: Please try to enroll as soon as possible as carriers are extremely backed up due to all policies being issued and renewing on the same date. Please note that if your deadline occurs on a week end you should submit your application to us by noon on the Friday before or if it occurs on a week day please submit before noon on day prior to the final day to ensure that the application is processed and you receive your requested issue date.
Q: Does the law require me to be insured by a qualified health plan all year to avoid a tax penalty (individual mandate)?
A: No. If you have coverage for part of the year, the fee is 1/12 of the annual amount for each month you (or your tax dependents) don’t have coverage. If you’re uncovered only 1 or 2 months, you don’t have to pay the fee at all.
Q: How do I look up my doctors?
A: Inside the exchange there is a provider search link next to each plan description and includes instructions of how to search the network.
Q: If my employer offers coverage am I able to enroll in a plan through the Texas Bar Private Insurance Exchange?
A: Yes, you are able to enroll in an individual policy on the private exchange if your employer offers coverage however, because your employer offers coverage you are not eligible for a subsidy on the public exchanges.
Q: If I have a claim issue who do I contact?
A: You will want to call the number on the back of your insurance ID card. All of the carriers have a designated claims department that will be able review any claims that a provider has submitted and explain the charges. If you have created a member log in with the insurance carrier you should also be able to access your claims online through the carrier website listed on your card.
Q: How do I update or change my billing information for my health insurance?
A: To change or update your health insurance billing information you may contact the carrier’s billing department by calling the number on the back of your ID card. If you have created a member log in with the insurance carrier you may also be able to change your billing online through the carrier website listed on your card. For any other products through the Texas Bar Private Insurance Exchange you will want to submit the change through the link below www.texasbar.memberbenefits.com/contact
Q: How do I change my address?
A: To change your address with your health insurance carrier information you may call the number on the back of your ID card. If you have created a member log in with the insurance carrier you may also be able to change your address online through the carrier website listed on your card. For any other products through the Texas Bar Private Insurance Exchange you will want to submit the change through the link below www.texasbar.memberbenefits.com/contact/