To have health insurance isn’t just a good idea — if you stay in California, it’s the law. 2020 marked the first year that Californians are required by state law to have health insurance.
What are the health insurance options available in California?
In California, you can select to either have health insurance content or go without. If you prefer the preceding, you have the following alternatives.
1. Employer Health Plans
Largely employees offer cheap medical insurance that meets government criteria. If you are covered by employer-offered health plans, you usually cannot get a tax credit through Covered California. However, there are limited exceptions. For example, if your share of the premium for the reasonable plan offered by your employer costs more than 9.66 percent of your total income, you may qualify for government assistance.
Maximum Californians over the age of 65 qualify for Medicare. If you are enrolled in Medicare, then you already meet the minimum crucial coverage requirements. This also suggests you can’t get a tax credit through Covered California.
Medi-Cal encloses qualifying low-income families, persons with disabilities, the elderly, pregnant women, and foster care youth. If you are enrolled in Medi-Cal, then you already meet the MEC requirements. To see if your household income qualifies you for Medi-Cal, check the federal poverty level chart.
4. Covered California Plans
If you don’t have employer-offered insurance and you aren’t offered insurance by the government, then you should see if you qualify for MEC through Covered California. Qualified individuals can receive subsidies from the government to help pay for their insurance.
5. Off-Exchange Plans
If you or a family member doesn’t qualify for any of the plans above, consider buying a plan directly from an insurance company. It can be expensive to add a family member to an employer-sponsored plan; so many people prefer to buy an individual plan directly through an insurance company.
6. Short-Term Medical Plans
Short-term insurance plans offer temporary coverage and are less expensive than other plans, especially if you’re younger. However, they don’t meet the MEC requirements, so you could still pay a tax penalty. This is usually the best option when one needs to fill a short gap between other medical plans.
How to enroll in California’s health insurance marketplace?
The Health Insurance Marketplace is the “shopping mall” set up by the Patient Protection Affordable Care Act (PPACA) or “Obamacare” where Americans can buy health insurance and receive government financial assistance.
To buy marketplace insurance plans, get California health insurance quotes and then apply. If you live outside of California, visit Healthcare.gov.
- The Marketplace is an easy place to shop online, apply, and enroll for minimum essential coverage health insurance that helps you avoid the tax penalty.
- You can view and compare benefits between plans and insurance carriers all in one place.
- It is the only way you can receive the Premium Tax Credit if you qualify.
- You can see if you or any family members qualify for Medicaid all on one application.
Health insurance for individuals and families in California
Health insurance operates with California insurance providers that offer health insurance for individuals and families. Compare California individual and family health plans from various providers and select the plan best suited for your health care needs. Learn more about individual and family health insurance plans in California and get free health insurance quotes to find the right plan for you
How much does a health insurance plan cost in California?
California residents can expect to pay an average of $487 per person for a major medical individual health insurance plan. Prices will vary and premiums can be lower if you are in good health
What are the cheap health insurance plans available in California?
Health insurance is typically obtained through employment or government assistance, such as Medicare or Medicaid. If you can’t get health insurance through these methods, you can purchase private plans through the California insurance exchange.
It is possible to find cheap health insurance in California’s private market, but it isn’t always the best option. This is because more affordable plans often come with high deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums, which means you’ll get less coverage and pay more if you have a medical emergency.
- Bronze. L.A Care Health Plan. Bronze 60 HMO. $275.
- Silver. Molina Healthcare. Silver 70 HMO. $347.
- Gold. Molina Healthcare. Gold 80 HMO. $358.
- Platinum. Molina Healthcare. Platinum 90 HMO. $414.