Thanks to the American Rescue Plan Act, also known as the “2021 COVID Relief Bill,” more people are eligible for the first time for Affordable Care Act (ACA) premium tax credits if they enroll in an ACA plan on HealthCare.gov (or their state’s Exchange).
The quickest way to figure out if you’re eligible is to utilize an ACA Subsidy Calculator.
Unless you qualify for an individual special enrollment period, you may not be eligible to enroll in an ACA plan until the next Open Enrollment Period.
Don’t qualify for an SEP or subsidy? Learn about options if you don’t qualify for an ACA Marketplace plan or subsidy.
How to Enroll in a Subsidized ACA Plan
You can access subsidies that you qualify for by enrolling in ACA-qualifying coverage either through the federal exchange (HealthCare.gov) or your state’s marketplace. If you want to use a cost-sharing reduction, you’ll need to enroll in a Silver metal level plan.
If you qualify for an SEP, an ACA health plan may be a good option as it’s the most comprehensive health coverage available. These plans may be especially helpful if you tend to use preventive healthcare services or have an existing health condition you’re managing.
- Have no annual or lifetime limits for the essential health benefits
- Are guaranteed-issue
- Have no-cost preventive care
What to do next:
- Go to Myhealthinsurance.com or your state’s Exchange and begin the application process.
- After inputting some basic information about your income, age, location, and number of household members that need coverage, you’ll be provided a range of plan options to choose from.
- Review the different plans available (Bronze, Silver, Gold) and select one with a premium and cost-sharing level that is the best fit for your healthcare needs and finances.
Consider supplemental benefits: Because of the increased tax credits, many people qualify for a more affordable Silver premium or even $0 premium Silver plan, which also means lower out-of-pocket costs. However, if you’re opting for a Bronze plan, you may find that you still have a higher deductible. In that situation, supplemental gap health insurance may be able to help.
Supplemental benefits don’t constitute major medical coverage as they do not meet the minimum essential coverage requirements of the ACA. However, these plans are designed to be used alongside an ACA plan to help with your major medical deductible and other out-of-pocket healthcare costs. Learn more about how supplemental insurance can help.
Find out how much a medical gap policy could cost you, shop, and enroll.
Summary + Next Steps
The 2021 COVID Relief Bill has expanded access to subsidies for many, and increased the subsidy amount for others. Working with a licensed insurance agent does not change the cost of your ACA policy, so speaking with an agent may be your best way to find the coverage you need.
Additional supplemental health benefits may be a good idea to help with a high deductible or to access dental benefits. Supplemental coverage can be purchased away from the Marketplace, either directly from insurance carriers or private exchanges.
Want professional help assessing your options? Call [phone_number] to speak with a licensed insurance agent today!