As used in connection with the Affordable Care Act — A new plan is a health plan that is not a grandfathered health plan and therefore subject to all of the reforms in the Affordable Care Act.
In the individual health insurance market, a plan that your family is purchasing for the first time will generally be a new plan.
In the group health insurance market, a plan that your employer is offering for the first time will generally be a new plan.
♦ New employees and new family members may be added to existing grandfathered group plans – so a plan that is “new to you” and your family may still be a grandfathered plan.
In both the individual and group markets, a plan that loses its grandfathered status will be considered a new plan.
♦ A plan loses its grandfathered status when it makes significant changes to the plan, such as reducing benefits or increasing cost-sharing for enrollees.
A health plan must disclose in its plan materials whether it considers itself to be a grandfathered plan and must also advise consumers how to contact the U.S. Department of Labor or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services with questions.