Why can't I cancel my health insurance ANYTIME?

I have $275.00 a week deducted from my paycheck for health insurance coverage. Our company is slow, dropping me to 20 hours a week. I want to cancel my policy. This is money that they TAKE from my check, I have no choice. I'm told open enrollment is the time, that's months away. I now take home about $175.00 a week. (I pay more to insurance than what I get to keep). In signing the contract, I guess I never realized that PROMISES the insurance company YOUR money until open enrollment. Is there anything that can be done short of marriage, divorce, child birth or death? If I obtained other insurance, would that work? I would need to show proof though right? Aren't there any laws to protect us? Why wouldn't losing 20 hours a week be qualifying grounds?

So many questions, so frustrating.



6 years ago - 6 answers

Best Answer

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It's part of the deal, for any group health insurance policy where the employer contributes - you can only make changes if you have a qualifying event.

Getting other insurance won't help. It's a LAW that says you can't make changes, except during open enrollment.

But I agree with you, going from full to part time, SHOULD be a qualifying event.


6 years ago

Other Answers

This is common. Your real problem is the 20 hours per week. If your full-time employment isn't going to come back soon, sounds like you need to be job hunting.

by bud68 - 6 years ago

The open enrollment argument is pretty weak, but I guess it depends on the terms of the plan. Many plans, however, require full time employment to be eligible and that's generally no less than 30 hours per week. Check that bit out if you really want to drop it.

by botygy - 6 years ago

Going part time should change your employment status. And getting other coverage should qualify you to drop coverage. I just pulled a daughter of a plan to get an indiviudal plan and we just checked the box under event stating "other coverage." They never asked questions or for proof. Sometimes though that other coverage does need to be group coverage.

But, yes for group you can get ON or OFF without a qualifying event. And, if you got another job, for example, and that other job gave you coverage you would not have to keep the group plan. You can get off if you try hard enough.

Good luck,


by Insurance - 6 years ago

You are required to wait for open enrollment by IRS section 125 for as long as you meet the definition of "eligible employee" If you no longer meet the definition of eligible employee , and your company does not include part timers as eligible employees, you should be able to discontinue coverage. These rules are determined in your company's Section 125 plan (cafeteria plan) documents. Ask your benefits manager to review their documents.
Use link below to IRS section 125.


by Don - 6 years ago

okay what you need to do is read your benefit booklet. if you dont have one, call the insurance or get one from the employer. you should be able to cancel. the company i work for (in CA) has a cancellation clause that allows you to opt out at any time.. so you should read up on that.


by Angee - 6 years ago