Types of Financial Help

Covered California

Lost your job? You can get health coverage!

Since the beginning of the coronavirus emergency, millions of Californians have filed for unemployment benefits, including many who lost their job-based health coverage. If your job was affected by COVID-19, or if you lack income because your hours were cut or if you're no longer working, Covered California is here for you.

Can I get health insurance now?

Yes. You do not have to wait for open enrollment. A special-enrollment period is underway now that allows you to enroll in a health plan until July 31, 2020. After July 31, 2020, you will need to experience a Qualifying Life Event in order to apply for health insurance coverage. For information, please visit here.

How do I enroll?

Call us at (800) 650-0922 and compare coverage options and costs. Begin by estimating your annual household income to see if you can get financial help. Next, choose a health plan that is the best fit for you and your family. Make your first payment and you are covered.

Once you start the application, you’ll either qualify for low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal, or depending on your estimated income, you’ll have the option to choose from specific health plans offered through Covered California, likely with financial help to pay your premium.

What about COBRA?

Your company may offer you Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) coverage. This is an opportunity to continue your current health coverage (typically up to 18 months) at an increased personal cost, since you will most likely be paying the portion your employer used to pay, plus an administrative fee. If you have already enrolled in coverage through COBRA, you generally must either wait for open enrollment in the fall or for your COBRA benefits to expire before you can enroll through a special enrollment period with Covered California. However, due to the coronavirus epidemic, through July 31, 2020, individuals impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible to enroll in health insurance through Covered California.

Can I compare COBRA and Covered California coverage?

To estimate the cost and benefits of Covered California coverage with that of COBRA, call us at (800) 650-0922 so we can help you understand your options before making a decision.

I already have coverage with Covered California but I'm having trouble affording my coverage because of loss of income. Am I eligible for extra financial help?

Keep your account up-to-date with your current income. You may be eligible for free or low-cost care through Medi-Cal, or more financial help paying for your Covered California plan. Call us today at (800) 650-0922 to review your income and application to see what options are available to you.

Is Medi-Cal an option?

Yes, if you are eligible, you may apply for Medi-Cal at any time. You do not have to wait until the open enrollment period or until COBRA coverage ends to enroll in Medi-Cal. For more information on Medi-Cal, visit here.

I am furloughed/ on unpaid leave / on Paid Family Medical Leave. What are my coverage options?

Covered California or Medi-Cal may be options available for you until your return to work. Apply by calling us at (800) 650-0922. We are available to update your Covered California account as your circumstances change (example: return to work) and advise you on next steps.

Types of Financial Help

Covered California offers three types of financial help:

  1. Federal Tax Credits

    Federal tax credits reduce the cost of your monthly premium. It’s also called the Advanced Premium Tax Credit (APTC).

  2. State Subsidy

    The state subsidy reduces the cost of your monthly premium.

  3. Cost-Sharing Reductions

    Cost-sharing reductions are subsidies that reduce your out-of-pocket costs, such as copays, coinsurance and deductibles.



Federal Tax Credits and the State Subsidy

To qualify for federal tax credits and the state subsidy, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national, or be lawfully present in the United States.

  • Not have access to affordable, minimum-value health insurance through an employer.

  • Not be eligible for other public health coverage, including full-scope Medi-Cal, premium-free Medicare Part A or military coverage.

  • File taxes for the year that you will receive premium assistance.

  • File taxes jointly if you are married.

  • For federal tax credits, have an annual household income between 100 and 400 percent of the federal poverty level.

  • For the state subsidy, have an annual household income between 0 and 138 percent or over 200 and up to 600 percent of the federal poverty level.


Cost-Sharing Reductions

Cost-sharing reductions are subsidies that lower your out-of-pocket costs when you get health care, including your copays, coinsurance, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximum. Cost-sharing reductions are available to those who are eligible for premium assistance and have an annual household income up to 250 percent of the federal poverty level. If you qualify, all Silver-level plans displayed to you will include cost-sharing reductions. You must choose a Silver plan to receive reduced cost-sharing.

Health insurance through Covered California just got more affordable.

The state of California is making new financial help available to almost a million Californians, many for the first time. Ninety percent of people who have signed up with Covered California get financial help, and you could be one of them. You could even qualify for low-cost or free health coverage through Medi-Cal. Even if you’ve checked before, check again to see if you’re eligible.

See If You're Eligible for Financial Help

Call us today at (800) 650-0922 to see how much you can save.

For more information about the new state subsidies, please review the design document, which has more details about the program.