Open enrollment for health insurance runs from Nov. 1, 2023, to Jan. 15, 2024.

This open enrollment period is for people who want to get health insurance coverage from the federal marketplace set up by the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. Not everyone gets health coverage from the Obamacare marketplace, though. Some get it from an employer. Others get it from Medicare or Medicaid.

This article tells you all you need to know about 2024 health insurance open enrollment for Obamacare and employer coverage.

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When can I get health insurance for 2024?

The 2024 open enrollment period for health insurance goes from Nov. 1, 2023, to Jan. 15, 2024, if you want Obamacare coverage.

Within this window, you can enroll in, re-enroll in or change a health insurance plan through the health insurance marketplace. (You may also know this as the health exchange.)

You might have even longer to buy health insurance for 2024 if you live in one of these states:

  • California
  • Massachusetts
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington, D.C.

These and some other states run their own health insurance exchanges or marketplaces. Because of that, they can expand their open enrollment windows.

For 2024, this means you can get health insurance between the following dates.

State or district 2024 open enrollment period
California Nov. 1, 2023, through Jan. 31, 2024*
Massachusetts Nov. 1, 2023, through Jan. 23, 2024
New Jersey Nov. 1, 2023, through Jan. 31, 2024
New York Nov. 1, 2023, through Jan. 31, 2024*
Rhode Island Nov. 1, 2023, through Jan. 31, 2024*
Washington, D.C. Nov. 1, 2023, through Jan. 31, 2024*
*These dates were used for 2023 open enrollment. Dates for 2024 open enrollment have yet to be announced.

When is open enrollment if I get health insurance from an employer?

The open enrollment periods tied to employer-sponsored health insurance plans often happen between October and December.

We can’t give specific dates because every employer sets its own health insurance open enrollment period.

If you get health insurance from an employer and you don’t know its open enrollment 2024 deadlines, check with human resources.

Is health insurance open enrollment only once a year?

Yes, health insurance open enrollment happens just once a year.

For example, unless you qualify for a special enrollment period, you can only get Obamacare coverage during the open enrollment period that starts at the end of the year. The same tends to be true of health coverage you get from an employer.

In other words, you usually can’t get health insurance any time you want.

When does 2024 health insurance coverage start?

Most 2024 health insurance plans start on Jan. 1.

If you want Obamacare coverage and you live in a state with expanded open enrollment, it may not take effect until later.

Most employer-sponsored health insurance plans also start on Jan. 1. This isn’t true of all employers, though, so check with yours if you don’t know when your 2024 coverage begins.

Do I have to wait for open enrollment to get health insurance for 2024?

You have to wait for open enrollment to get coverage for 2024 through the health insurance marketplace or an employer.

The only way you can get these kinds of health insurance plans outside open enrollment is to qualify for a special enrollment period.

Open enrollment impacts on uninsured rates

QuoteWizard analysts have been tracking health insurance changes since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. While the number of uninsured Americans has gone down by 14% since the beginning of 2021, health insurance coverage varies wildly by state.

Maine, for example, saw a 124% increase in its number of uninsured residents, while states like Minnesota had a 40% decrease in its uninsured rate.

States with the most uninsured
State Uninsured January 2021 Currently uninsured % change in uninsured
U.S. average 14% 12% -16%
Alabama 18% 13% -29%
Alaska 13% 11% -13%
Arizona 13% 10% -23%
Arkansas 11% 10% -10%
California 12% 10% -15%
Colorado 11% 9% -22%
Connecticut 8% 5% -41%
Delaware 9% 7% -26%
Florida 17% 18% 2%
Georgia 18% 14% -18%
Hawaii 10% 4% -55%
Idaho 13% 12% -10%
Illinois 8% 11% 28%
Indiana 10% 8% -17%
Iowa 7% 4% -46%
Kansas 13% 11% -15%
Kentucky 10% 10% 5%
Louisiana 11% 12% 11%
Maine 5% 12% 124%
Maryland 6% 6% 2%
Massachusetts 5% 0% 100%
Michigan 9% 8% -5%
Minnesota 7% 4% -40%
Mississippi 15% 13% -17%
Missouri 13% 13% -4%
Montana 9% 10% 13%
Nebraska 5% 9% 79%
Nevada 17% 12% -27%
New Hampshire 8% 0% -100%
New Jersey 9% 7% -14%
New Mexico 13% 9% -27%
New York 8% 8% -9%
North Carolina 14% 12% -11%
North Dakota 10% 8% -22%
Ohio 9% 7% -23%
Oklahoma 20% 17% -16%
Oregon 9% 8% -8%
Pennsylvania 7% 7% -5%
Rhode Island 6% 0% -100%
South Carolina 16% 12% -24%
South Dakota 13% 8% -44%
Tennessee 12% 12% -1%
Texas 26% 21% -21%
Utah 8% 7% -8%
Vermont 5% 1% -79%
Virginia 8% 7% -7%
Washington 10% 8% -20%
West Virginia 9% 7% -21%
Wisconsin 5% 5% -7%
Wyoming 19% 15% -21%
QuoteWizard analysts tracked health insurance coverage by monitoring changes in the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Household Pulse Survey.

Can I get health insurance outside of open enrollment?

You can get health insurance from the Obamacare marketplace or an employer outside open enrollment if you qualify for a special enrollment period.

To qualify for a special enrollment period, you need to go through a life change or qualifying life event like:

  • Getting married
  • Getting divorced or legally separated and losing health insurance
  • Having a baby, adopting a child or placing a child for foster care
  • Moving to a new ZIP code or county
  • Losing your job
  • Losing health coverage — including Medicare, Medicaid or CHIP — for some other reason

Also, you usually need to have gone through one of these life events in the last 60 days to qualify for a special enrollment period.

How to get health insurance after open enrollment

You can get health insurance outside of open enrollment by:

  • Qualifying for a special enrollment period
  • Getting a new or additional job that offers health insurance
  • Getting short-term health insurance
  • Qualifying for Medicaid or CHIP coverage

When is the next open enrollment for health insurance?

Health insurance open enrollment for 2025 should go from Nov. 1, 2024, to Jan. 15, 2025.

These dates are for people who plan to get Obamacare coverage. You may have longer if you live in a state with expanded open enrollment.

Is health insurance mandatory for 2024?

Health insurance is not mandatory for most Americans in 2024.

The Affordable Care Act used to require people to carry “qualifying health coverage.” Those who didn’t get qualifying health insurance had to pay a fee when they filed their federal taxes.

The federal government no longer penalizes people for not having health insurance. Some states do, though. If you live in one of them, you might pay a fee with your state taxes if you don’t have health coverage in 2024.

These states currently require health insurance:

Washington, D.C., also has a health insurance mandate.

How do I apply for Obamacare?

You can apply for 2024 Obamacare coverage over the phone, through the mail or online at

Does your state run its own exchange or marketplace? If so, you’ll need to contact it or use its website to get health insurance coverage for 2024.

Don’t worry if you have no idea if your state runs its own exchange. When you go to apply for Obamacare coverage at, it will tell you.

Before you take any of the steps mentioned above, though, figure out which type of Obamacare plan is right for you.

What do I need to apply for Obamacare?

You need to have certain pieces of information and documents on hand when you apply for 2024 Obamacare health insurance coverage. They include:

  • Your Social Security Number
  • The Social Security Numbers of anyone else who will be on your plan
  • The birth dates and addresses of anyone your plan will cover
  • W-2 statements or employer and income information for anyone your plan will cover
  • Information about your current health insurance coverage (if you currently have coverage)
  • An estimate of your 2023 household income

Is it too late to get health insurance for 2023?

It is too late to get 2023 health insurance coverage from the Obamacare marketplace if you haven’t recently gone through a qualifying life event. This is true if you get health insurance from an employer as well.

When was open enrollment for 2023?

Health insurance open enrollment for 2023 ran from Nov. 1, 2022, to Jan. 15, 2023, in most states. Some states extended open enrollment beyond that date. LLC has made every effort to ensure that the information on this site is correct, but we cannot guarantee that it is free of inaccuracies, errors, or omissions. All content and services provided on or through this site are provided "as is" and "as available" for use. LLC makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, as to the operation of this site or to the information, content, materials, or products included on this site. You expressly agree that your use of this site is at your sole risk.