Switching to Covered California

I am getting ready to leave my job sometime in the next couple of months, which means losing my employer sponsored healthcare for my family. I am confused by the Covered California website, and wondered if anyone has recently been through this transition. Is a voluntary separation from employment a covered life event? Do I have to buy COBRA for some period of time? (perhaps as a bridge?) How long does it take to have your application approved? (website says up to 45 days, which seems like a long time to go without insurance!) Are there more local (Berkeley to Pinole) dentists available through the DHMO or DPPO? Thanks for any thoughts.

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I have been using Cover California since it started.  I do not know all the answers to your questions. I believe, yes a change in jobs is a qualifying life event even if you institute the change.  For your other questions give them a call.  Phone number on the website gets answered by helpful, knowledgeable people.  Every time I have called over the years I have gotten the help I need to navigate the system. 

Hope that's helpful.  Good luck.

My husband and I just signed up with Covered California and had excellent assistance from Steve Moeller, Principal Advisor, at SDMI Insurance. He answered our many questions (we joined after deciding our COBRA coverage was too expensive)  about the eligibility and application process and was incredibly responsive. There is no cost. He's located in Fremont and his number/email is (510) 284-2125 and steve [at] sdmifinancial.com