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Converted domestic partners eligible for different insurance

THURSDAY, JULY 3, 2014, 12:28 P.M.

State health plan opens special enrollment

OLYMPIA _ Same-sex couples who had their domestic partnerships converted to marriages this week will have two months to sign up for different medical insurance through Washington’s online health plan exchange.

The state opened a special 60-day enrollment window for those couples who were automatically married by a provision in the state law that allowed for same-sex marriage. Couples who were in domestic partnerships were declared married on June 30 unless at least one partner was 62 or older.

Those new unions might not have been eligible for coverage as spouses earlier this year when the Washington HealthPlanFinder had open enrollment for state residents under the Affordable Care Act. The next statewide open enrollment period doesn’t start until Nov. 15.

But the conversion of the domestic partnerships to marriage will be considered a “qualifying life event” that allows for a special 60-day enrollment period, just as individual marriages are throughout the year.

Through Aug. 28, former domestic partners declared married on Monday can apply for insurance at, and if eligible for a qualified health plan will be helped through the steps to sign up.

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