The eligibility requirements to receive premium assistance for the new ACA health plans offered through either the federal or state websites is based on a household’s estimated income in 2014. Past federal tax returns are a great starting point and guide, but an individual or family’s wages may have significantly changed in 2013 and may change again in 2014.
ACA premium assistance based on future household income
When applying the Advance Premium Tax Credit to help reduce health insurance premiums in 2014 it is important to be as accurate as possible when forecasting future household income. Many of us may have seasonal or part time jobs, income from a side business or receive income from non-traditional sources.
Estimating monthly household income
In an effort to try and visualize a snapshot of future household income I have put together a simple spread sheet that captures the income data that a family may realize on a monthly basis. The Monthly Household Income Estimator is meant as a guide and not meant to replace the various eligibility steps of the ACA exchange websites. You may have other income sources or deductions not listed on the Monthly Household Income Estimator that you should talk to you local agent or exchange representative for clarification.
You can download the Excel spreadsheet and put in your own numbers to help determine your household income.
Past tax returns are only a guide
All of the income data gets funneled into the last cell called Total Monthly Income. One person in the household can have multiple jobs. The Job columns don’t have to pertain to the Person columns below that record Other income. Supplement Security Income is not counted but Social Security Disability Income is part of the ACA eligibility calculations. Other income additions and deductions are noted on the spreadsheet. The information was taken from the UC Berkeley Labor Center Modified Adjusted Gross Income under the Affordable Care Act, October 2013 informational guide.
See also What’s included in Household Income for premium assistance for Covered California health plans post