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What to Expect From Open Enrollment When You're Expecting

  • Becoming pregnant typically isn't a so-called "qualifying life event" that lets you change or enroll in health coverage mid-year. So if you're hoping to start a family next year, picking the right plan during open enrollment is crucial.

  • In addition to choosing a health plan, consider loading up on tax-advantaged accounts, such as a health savings account or medical flexible spending account, to handle medical bills.

  • Some companies also offer open enrollment programs such as vacation-buying plans, which could help extend paid leave.

If you expect to welcome a new baby to the family in 2019, cast a critical eye to your health benefits this fall.

It's open enrollment season, a time when many Americans sign up for a health plan for the coming year, including those through an employer or on government exchanges.

Plenty make those decisions on autopilot: Ninety-three percent of employees choose the same benefits each year, and 56 percent spend less than 30 minutes researching their options, according to a report from Aflac.