Best Illinois Short Term Health Insurance

Read our Advertiser Disclosure.
Contributor, Benzinga
May 11, 2022

Quick Look: Best Illinois Short Term Health Insurance

  • Best for Comparing Short-Term Health Plans: Pivot
  • Best for No Enrollment Period Insurance: Sidecar
  • Best for Flexible Plans and Coverage Options: UnitedHealthcare
  • Best for Anybody Who Needs Temporary Health Insurance: Everest
  • Best for Temporary Health Insurance: Aetna

If you need to get affordable health insurance quickly, it’s smart to get online quotes from top-rated health insurance providers. When it comes to short term health insurance, Illinois residents have some solid options to choose from. But, how do you know which companies offer the best Illinois short term health insurance? Benzinga compared the best health insurance providers to help secure a great deal on coverage for you and your family.

Best Illinois Short Term Health Insurance

Now that you understand how temporary health insurance plans work, it’s time to explore your coverage options. Below are some of the top-rated health insurance providers offering short term health insurance options in Illinois.

1. Pivot Health

  • Pivot Health
    Best For:
    Comparing short term health plans
    securely through Pivot Health's website

    Availability of plans and policy duration vary by state.

2. Sidecar Health

  • Sidecar Health Access Plan
    Best For:
    No enrollment period health insurance
    securely through Sidecar Health Access Plan's website

    Plans referred to above are excepted benefit fixed indemnity insurance products marketed and administered by Sidecar Health Insurance Solutions, LLC and underwritten by Sirius America Insurance Company or United States Fire Insurance Company, depending on the state. As an excepted benefit plan, it does not provide comprehensive/major medical expenses coverage, minimum essential coverage, or essential health benefits. You cannot receive a subsidy (premium tax credit and/or cost-sharing reduction) under the ACA in connection with your purchase of such an excepted benefit fixed indemnity insurance plan. Also, the termination or loss of this policy does not entitle you to a special enrollment period to purchase a health benefit plan that qualifies as minimum essential coverage outside of an open enrollment period. Coverage and plan options may vary or may not be available in all states.

3. UnitedHealthcare

4. Everest

5. Aetna

Illinois Health Insurance Laws

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) recommends that you should have health insurance. Practically, however, the tax punishment for having no health insurance has been eliminated. This implies that you still need to report your coverage status on your tax return, but won’t pay any penalty if you’re not under any coverage.

As a resident of Illinois, you aren’t legally required to possess any type of temporary health insurance. However, here are some quick facts about its provisions:

  • Illinois short health insurance plans are limited to a duration of less than 181 days. Renewals are not permitted within a period of 365 days from the end of an individual’s coverage under the policy.
  • Enrollees cannot buy a new short term plan from the same provider within 60 days of the termination of the previous plan.
  • Short term plans aren’t minimum essential coverage, don’t cover any preexisting conditions, and don’t include coverage for all of ACA’s essential health benefits.

What is Short Term Health Insurance?

Temporary insurance typically covers the most basic healthcare costs for short time frames and should be a last resort between 2 long-term plans. You could opt for a short term health insurance plan if you’re waiting for your major medical plan to begin, missed the open enrollment period for an ACA-compliant plan or need proof of insurance fast.

Short term plans are usually the best affordable health insurance options since they are cheaper than most other health insurance plans and are open for enrollment all year. These plans are typically controlled by the state government of Illinois. You can’t have more than 181 days of temporary insurance in one 365-day period. Besides, you cannot renew your plan within 60 days of the termination of the previous plan.

It’s crucial to understand that short term health insurance plans are not a substitute for long-term coverages. These plans aren’t required to comply with the ACA guidelines, therefore, they won’t provide the coverage you may need. Short term health insurance offers some level of coverage for:

  • Emergency care
  • Doctor visits
  • Prescription medications
  • Diagnostic services
  • Hospital, medical and surgical services (outpatient and inpatient)
  • Occupational, speech and physical therapy

While ACA plans stipulate that insurers approve all applicants irrespective of their health status, short term plans could reject you. Additionally, some might require “guaranteed issue,” which means a plan must cover you, a requirement that the federal law does not demand for short health plans. Being denied coverage by short term plans is common for people with preexisting conditions. Besides, you may have to pay exorbitant premiums for coverage.

Who Needs Short Term Health Insurance?

Short term insurance may be a great solution if there’s a gap between your health insurance policies, like when you’re shifting jobs. It’s also a good alternative to the expensive coverage options like COBRA coverage or plans that are available through the ACA. It isn’t a good idea financially to live without insurance because, in the event of a medical emergency, you could find yourself strapped in thousands of dollars in debt.

A temporary health insurance plan might be useful in some situations. Consider a temporary plan to help cover your medical needs in the interim:

  • Seasonal employees: If you hold a seasonal or temporary position with your current employer, the chances are that they don’t provide health insurance. A short term plan would be a great option.
  • Changing jobs:  A majority of employers provide medical insurance benefits, but if you’ve been paid off or are between jobs, the employer-sponsored insurance isn’t effective. Even for the short transitions, a temporary insurance plan could ensure that you have the minimal coverage for your health and medical needs.
  • Aging out of your parent’s coverage: 26 is the magic number in Illinois and across the U.S. If you’re approaching this age and are still covered by your parent’s insurance, it’s time to explore other options. After hitting the 26-year mark, you’ll be ineligible for medical health benefits as a dependent and will need your own policy.
  • Missed open or special enrollment periods:  A temporary plan could be great if you missed out on the open enrollment time frame for an employer-sponsored insurance or any ACA policy. Until the next enrollment period, a short term cover could shield you from major medical expenses.
  • Immigrants: If you recently immigrated to the U.S. a temporary policy could ensure you’re covered until an employer plan or any type of sponsored insurance takes effect.
  • Coverage for children: You may need to cover your children when you are in the process of a divorce and must arrange for insurance as the decree and custody plans are worked out. At times, court orders may force you to purchase these coverage quickly before your children are added to a standard health insurance plan.

When Can You Enroll for Short Term Health Insurance?

Contrary to major medical or ACA-compliant insurance plans, short term plans have no open enrollment period. This implies that you can apply for a temporary health insurance year-round without having to worry about blackout dates. So even if you missed the enrollment deadline and still don’t have a qualifying life event, a temporary insurance plan could be a good option to fill the gaps in coverage.

Where Can You Enroll for Short Term Health Insurance?

Before settling on a short term insurance plan, be sure you get a few quotes online from insurance providers. Getting a quote online is simple and fast, and you can view all your coverage options after filling in a short form with just a little of your personal information. Once you receive your quote and compare plan options, you can enroll on the insurance provider’s website.

Get Your Short Term Insurance Coverage Today

Is it outside the open enrollment period and you’re wondering how to get health insurance? Illinois short term health insurance might fulfill your needs. And since it’s a temporary cover, it would be a good option for anyone who’s transitioning between health plans. Start by getting quotes online to see how much you should pay. After that, compare your options in monthly pay, coverage, coinsurance and deductibles before settling on an option. Why not protect yourself today?

Frequently Asked Questions


How long can you have short term health insurance?


This depends on the laws where you live as well as what your provider offers, but typically, short term health plans last no longer than 364 days. Some can be renewed, often up to 3 times for a total of 36 months.


Can you extend short term coverage?


In some states and with some plans from certain providers, you can renew or extend your coverage, but this varies on a case-by-case basis.

Philip Loyd, Licensed Insurance Agent

About Philip Loyd, Licensed Insurance Agent

Loyd has written for, Red News Real Estate,,, McGraw Hill,, WikiHow,, S.R. Education, Society of Petroleum Engineers and BioTech Fortunes. He is a licensed insurance agent and financial advisor with both his series 6 and 7 certifications.