Tips for helping applicants "in line" for 2014 coverage

Assisting consumers who are trying to enroll by March 31?

CMS offers the following tips to help consumers complete enrollments that were started before March 31 but not completed. A PDF of the guidance is available here.

March 27, 2014 - Assisting consumers who are trying to enroll by March 31? We can help.
We know you are working hard to finish enrolling consumers for coverage in the Health Insurance Marketplace. Although we are enrolling more consumers every day, CMS anticipates that high traffic across consumer enrollment channels (i.e.,,, or the Marketplace Call Center) leading up to the March 31 deadline could potentially keep consumers from completing the enrollment process despite their efforts to meet the deadline. If a consumer is “in line” and has tried to enroll through the website, our Call Center, or a state Medicaid or CHIP agency by the March 31 enrollment deadline for coverage in 2014, we will help make sure they can complete the application process in order to get covered.
Sometimes, despite your best efforts, you may run into delays caused by heavy traffic to or our Call Center, maintenance periods, or another issue that prevents you from helping consumers finish the process on time. If this happens, don’t worry – we will take steps to get individuals affected by these issues insured in 2014.
If you are still in the process of trying to enroll consumers when Open Enrollment ends on March 31 and can’t finish, keep trying. If consumers are “in line” working on the application process by March 31, they will have a chance to complete their enrollment.
After March 31, assisters should help these “in line” consumers complete their applications either online at or or through the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596; TTY users should call 1-855-889-4325. Individuals applying online must attest that they tried to enroll in coverage through either the Health Insurance Marketplace or a state Medicaid or Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) agency, either online or over the phone, by March 31, 2014, and didn’t complete enrollment in Marketplace coverage because of a problem that wasn’t their own fault. If people you are assisting call the Call Center, be sure that they tell the customer service representative that they’ve been trying to enroll the consumer and explain why they couldn’t finish by the March 31 deadline. Information related to paper applications will be processed if they are received by April 7 to ensure that consumers who were “in line” with paper applications and supporting documentation on March 31 are able to complete enrollment.
Other reminders:
· If you continue to experience difficulty enrolling consumers due to system errors, please contact the Call Center and continue to keep a record of those issues and tell the Marketplace about them, as you have been doing for the past several months.
· If you are assisting a consumer who is waiting to receive an eligibility notice via U.S. mail, we suggest that consumers utilize the Call Center to learn the status of their application. If the Call Center is not able to identify the status of the application, consumers should consider starting a new application online or through the Call Center, attesting that they had problems doing so on or before March 31. These consumers are considered “in line” by March 31.
· Finally, if you are assisting a consumer who is not able to successfully pass identity proofing by answering the identity proofing questions on or by working with the Experian
Help Desk, we recommend the consumer upload documents to their My Account as soon as possible. These consumers are considered “in line” by March 31.
Thank you again for your dedication and support in enrolling consumers, many for the first time, in health coverage.