FAQ: The American Rescue Plan

FAQ: The American Rescue Plan

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  1. Who is eligible for subsidies through the American Rescue Plan (ARP) and when will they be available to Community Marketplace Members?

Enhanced tax credits are available to all Community Marketplace Members.

If you were already eligible for subsidies, more help is now available. If you were previously told that you were not eligible for subsidies because your income is too high, you may now be eligible. Update your Marketplace application to check if you are eligible for the new financial assistance.

  1. I was not eligible to receive subsidies before. Does the American Rescue Plan financial assistance extend to higher income individuals?

Yes. Before the American Rescue Plan, no assistance was available for individuals earning more than $51,040 and a family of four earning more than $104,800. Through the American Rescue Plan, higher income individuals and families are eligible for the subsidies.

The amount of assistance is based on your income and where you live. For example, an individual in Harris County earning $55,000 per year who was not previously eligible for subsidies, will now receive over $150 per month, or $1,882 per year, to help pay for health insurance.

Examples of How the American Rescue Plan Will Increase Your Monthly Subsidies

(Note: the amount of subsidies you receive depends on your income and where you live. The examples below are for a single adult enrolling in coverage.)

Estimated Monthly Subsidy by Annual Income & County

Before ARP

After ARP

$ 35,000 per year in Harris County

$282

$401

$ 40,000 per year in Harris County

$219

$335

$55,000 per year in Harris County

$0

$157

  1. If I enroll, how long will I receive these enhanced subsidies?

The enhanced financial assistance available through the American Rescue Plan is for all of 2021 and all of 2022.

  1. When will the enhanced subsidies appear on my bill?

The enhanced subsidies will show up on your bill the month after you re-enroll. For example, if you re-enroll on May 2, the enhanced subsidies will appear on your June bill.

  1. Do I have to enroll in a specific plan to use the enhanced subsidies available through the American Rescue Plan?

No. You can enroll in any metal tier plan – Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum – and apply your subsidies towards lowering your monthly premiums for that plan. You must update your application to access the enhanced subsidies.

  1. I am currently not enrolled in a Marketplace plan. Where should I start?

There are three ways to shop for and select a plan:

  1. I am already enrolled in a plan for 2021. Can I change plans now?

Yes. During the COVID-19 Special Enrollment Period, consumers are permitted to change their health plans until August 15, 2021. And, because of the availability of the new American Rescue Plan tax credits, the federal government allows consumers who change health plans within the same insurer to carryover amounts they have spent towards the deductible and maximum out-of-pocket limit from their old health plan. For example, if you are enrolled in a silver level plan with Community and want to change to a gold level plan with Community, you will be able to change plans and transfer any 2021 spending toward the annual deductible to your new plan.

If You Received Unemployment Compensation in 2021

  1. I have been laid-off from work. Does the American Rescue Plan help me to afford health insurance?

Yes. If you have been collecting unemployment insurance for at least one week in 2021, the American Rescue Plan states you will be able to receive the maximum amount of subsidies to help lower your monthly premium costs. For example, if you received unemployment insurance January 1 through January 7, 2021 and you apply for health insurance April 1, 2021, you qualify for the enhanced subsidy amount because you received unemployment insurance for at least one week in 2021.

Instructions on how to apply will be added to this page when they are final.

  1. What type of unemployment compensation qualifies?

All types of unemployment compensation qualify. This includes Regular Unemployment Compensation, Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), Extended Unemployment Compensation, and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA).

  1. Once I enroll, how long will I have this enhanced financial assistance?

This benefit will expire on December 31, 2021.

  1. Do I also qualify for lower deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance when I use my health plan?

Yes. If eligible and you enroll in a silver plan, you will have a very low or no deductible and very low copays and coinsurance when you use your benefits. If you enroll in platinum, gold, or bronze plan, the regular deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance apply.

  1. When can I access these enhanced subsidies due to Unemployment Insurance Benefit enrollment?

This new benefit will be available to Community Members beginning July 1, 2021. Instructions on how to apply will be added to this page when they are final.

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