Effective Friday, March 20, Covered California opened the health insurance exchange to any eligible uninsured individuals who need health care coverage amid the COVID-19 national emergency. Anyone who meets Covered California’s eligibility requirements, which are similar to those in place during the annual open-enrollment period, can sign up for coverage through June 30.
Posts on the development and implementation of the California health insurance market place, application, account, enrollment, termination.
Covered California is expanding its dragnet to catch people who may not be entitled to the Advance Premium Tax Credit (APTC) subsidy. If you are eligible for Medicare, or have other minimum essential coverage (MEC), you are not eligible for the monthly APTC subsidy.
The extra $3,000 is clearly stated on the 1095-A. I have seen it. The question is, “What did Kaiser do with the extra $3,000 and how did they not figure out that they were receiving no consumer premium to attach to the monthly subsidy?”
Why can’t people who earn too much money to qualify for either MAGI Medi-Cal or the subsidies through Covered California just be allowed to pay the monthly capitation rate for these plans? They are less expensive than private insurance and would offer some protection from the corona virus health care costs.
When the Byrd’s put all their information into the application, it calculates that they should pay no more than 7.30% of their income toward health insurance ($3,352 per year), and subtracts that from the annual cost of the Second Lowest Cost Silver Plan ($16,368 – $3,352 = $13,014.12) The exchange then divides the annual $13,014 of the subsidy by 12 months to get a monthly subsidy of $1,084.50.
The Change Log Table shows that Sacramento County Medi-Cal returned the client’s household size to 2 and added the deceased spouse back into the household. The only notification the client received that Medi-Cal had meddled with her account was when she received a notice from Kaiser informing the client that her coverage had been terminated.
Occasionally, I am asked whether I am an insurance agent or a broker. The underlying premise of the question is that the person does not want their insurance options limited to only those insurance companies the agent represents. The assumption is that a broker will not steer the client into an insurance policy that he or she receives the highest commission for. For the purposes of this discussion involving health insurance, there are no brokers, we are all agents. But not all agents are equal when it comes to the health plans they represent.
I was in attendance at a Covered California meeting in Sacramento where agents asked if Covered California was going to publicize the individual mandate penalty in their marketing campaign for open enrollment. Executive Director Peter Lee told the audience that Covered California marketing would focus on the new California Premium Subsidy and not the penalty. But now, Covered California is using the argument that thousands of people don’t know about the penalty, when they are in charge of making California residents aware of the individual mandate penalty.
Consumers who are currently insured in the individual market directly through an insurer “off-exchange” may be eligible to receive financial help if they purchase coverage through Covered California during this new SEP. It is important to note that consumers who earn from 138 percent FPL through 600 percent FPL may receive state and/or federal subsidies which means they would be more likely to retain their coverage.
For most tax payers, the income they estimated on their application for health insurance will not be exactly the same amount as their final Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) on their 2019 federal tax return. Part II of form 8962 compares the subsidy you received (column f) to the amount of subsidy you are entitled to (column e) from data supplied by the market place exchange on form 1095-A.