Six State Experiences with Marketplace Renewals

A study of six states shows they effectively re-enrolled insurance marketplace customers in large numbers, in spite of challenges helping consumers balance convenience and health plan affordability.

The Issue

The study uses enrollment data and stakeholder interviews to identify the challenges, successes, and lessons learned from year two re-enrollment in six states—California, Colorado, Kentucky, Maryland, Rhode Island, and Washington.

Key Findings

Among the six study states:

  • Enrollee retention is high.

  • Surprising levels of enrollees shopping within the marketplaces during the 2015 open enrollment period (i.e., consumers switching plans based on price or services offered).

  • Challenges included: re-determining consumers’ eligibility for tax credits based on income changes, technology glitches with marketplace websites, and how to best communicate with consumers about re-enrolling.

Despite challenges and the added pressure of signing up new enrollees, the authors note that states were largely successful in retaining consumers from 2014, but will need to improve their renewal processes in order to meet long-term enrollment goals.

About the Grantee

The nonprofit Urban Institute is dedicated to elevating the debate on social and economic policy. For nearly five decades, Urban scholars have conducted research and offered evidence-based solutions that improve lives and strengthen communities across a rapidly urbanizing world. Their objective research helps expand opportunities for all, reduce hardship among the most vulner­able and strengthen the effectiveness of the public sector. For more information specific to the Urban Institute’s Health Policy Center, its staff and its recent research, visit

About the Center on Health Insurance Reforms

The Center on Health Insurance Reforms at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute is a nonpartisan, expert team of faculty and staff dedicated to conducting research on the complex and developing relationship between state and federal oversight of health insurance markets.