What is a binder payment and how do I make one?

What is a binder payment and how do I make one?

A binder payment is the first month's premium for a new individual health insurance policy you've agreed to purchase. You must pay the first month’s premium ("binder payment") to complete the enrollment process.  If you fail to make your binder payment, your policy will not take effect ("effectuate") and you will not be enrolled in coverage. In other words, you will lose your health insurance before you had it. And if you're outside of the open enrollment period, you will not be able to purchase a new policy until next year's open enrollment unless you qualify for a special enrollment period.

In general, the binder payment is due on the start date of coverage. The specific due date varies by insurance company and state.

Billing processes are unique to each health insurance company. Find your insurance company below for specific instructions on how to make a binder payment.

Once you pay your binder payment and it is processed by the insurance company, you are officially enrolled. You can then set up monthly automatic payments. All insurance companies with plans available in your state's Marketplace are required to offer you the following payment methods:

  • Check;
  • Money order;
  • General-purpose pre-paid debit card; and
  • Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT).

(Some states require insurance companies to offer additional payment methods such as credit cards, debit cards, or cash.)

Don't see your insurance company or think our instructions are out of date? Contact us and we'll add it to the list or update our instructions.

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