Last Updated
September 13, 2019

Notes: Short-term policies are not subject to the federal consumer protections of the ACA. Under federal regulations finalized in August 2018, short-term policies may provide coverage for a period of 364 days and may be renewed, at the discretion of the insurance company, for up to 36 months. This table identifies states that, by limiting the maximum duration of short-term coverage to less than 364 days, or by applying state law consumer protections to such coverage, impose limitations on the sale of short-term plans than are more strict than those mandated under the default federal approach.

The states identified entirely prohibit short-term coverage or bar short-term insurers from discriminating on the basis of an applicant's health status.

A state is identified as having limited the initial contract duration of underwritten short-term coverage to less than 364 days if a short-term plan lasting longer than the specified duration would become subject to one or more of the following state consumer protections: guaranteed issue, guaranteed renewability, or required coverage of essential health benefits. Such states typically impose limitations on the renewal of short-term policies, but, in most cases, do not prohibit insurers from issuing multiple new short-term policies consecutively.

A state is identified as having limited the total length of time a consumer may be enrolled in underwritten short-term coverage to less than 364 days if it prohibits the issuance of multiple short-term policies consecutively, closing a loophole that otherwise may permit continuous enrollment in such plans.

Connecticut makes consecutive short-term policies subject to certain preexisting condition coverage requirements.

Hawaii also prohibits the issuance of a short-term policy to an individual who was eligible to purchase coverage through the ACA marketplace during an open or special enrollment period in the previous calendar year.

California prohibits the issuance of any health insurance policy with a duration of less than 12 months.

Washington also prohibits the issuance of a short-term policy during the annual open enrollment period, for coverage beginning in the upcoming year.

Delaware prohibits insurers from (1) issuing the same short-term policy to an enrollee for successive back-to-back terms; and (2) from issuing a different short-term policy to the same individual more than once in any given year.