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Length of time in life and health insurance in which an employee can apply for and pay the first premium without having to show evidence of insurability (take a physical examination). The period is usually the first 30 days of employment. After expiration of the eligibility period, an employee may have to take a physical or provide medical history information to qualify for coverage. If the employee does not pass the physical, coverage can be denied under a group plan or the employee can be charged a much higher premium rate than the group rate. This is why it is extremely important for a new employee to apply for group life and health insurance during the eligibility period.