Advance Premium Tax Credit

What to Know If You Get Help Paying for Health Insurance from Both the Health Connector and Your Employer

Overview A Health Reimbursement Arrangement, or HRA, is an employee health benefit from your employer that reimburses you for your health care expenses up to a certain dollar amount. There are several types of HRAs. This page focuses on two types: Individual Coverage HRAs and Qualified Small Employer HRAs (QSEHRAs). If you are offered one of these types of HRAs, you should have received a clear notice from your employer explaining the terms of the Individual Coverage HRA or the QSEHRA. The type of HRA will appear prominently on that notice. If your employer offers an Individual Coverage HRAor a QSEHRA instead of a traditional employer health insurance plan, you can use it to help pay your monthly premiums for a health plan purchased through the Health Connector. However, if you are offered an Individual Coverage HRA or a QSEHRA and are also eligible for subsidies through the Health Connector, you might be at risk of owing money to the IRS at the end of the year when you file taxes. To learn how these types of HRAs might affect your tax credit eligibility and what to do next, visit the Health Connector’s HRA tool. Have your HRA notice on hand, as you will need information from it to use the tool. You can also read more below about Individual Coverage HRAs and QSEHRAs and the steps you can take to protect yourself from owing money back to the IRS at tax time. Find out [...]

Monday, April 29th, 2019|

Your coverage end date and renewing your coverage

When you buy health and dental insurance through the Health Connector, your coverage period ends on December 31 regardless of your coverage start date. But, don’t worry. You have the opportunity to review coverage each year during the Open Enrollment period. The past Open Enrollment period ended January 23, 2020. The 2021 Open Enrollment period will be announced mid-year 2020. Before your coverage end date for the year, you will get letters in the mail that will let you know about your coverage options for the next year. Your plan renewal information will tell you if your plan will be available for the next year, or, if it is not, will give your information about the new plan you are matched to. During open enrollment you can shop for a different plan, even if the plan you have is available. By shopping during open enrollment, you may be able to find plans with lower costs. If your plan is available for the next year and you do not want to change it, then all you have to do is continue to pay your monthly premium. About plan premiums It is important to know that plan premiums change each year. Premiums are calculated based on The ages of covered household members, The number of people covered on the plan, Where you live, and Rates set by health insurers, approved by the Massachusetts Division of Insurance If you are eligible for savings that help lower your monthly premium cost, this may change, [...]

Monday, April 2nd, 2018|

Can I get help paying for health insurance through the Health Connector?

If you are applying for health coverage and are not sure if you qualify for help paying for your insurance, we offer a tool to help you estimate if you may be eligible. To use this tool: Go to the login landing page here. On that page, you will see a section that reads "See What You May Qualify For" Enter your zip code, select a coverage start date and choose "Yes" to the question "Do you want to check to see if you are eligible for help paying for costs?" Click "Start Now" to use the tool, answering all the questions on the following pages. Remember: The results from the tool is only an estimate of what you may qualify for. You will need to complete an application to get your actual eligibility decision. You may qualify if you: Shop through the Massachusetts Health Connector Live in Massachusetts Are a U.S. citizen, national, or are otherwise lawfully present in the U.S. Have income that is 400% of of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) or or lower (see chart below) You won’t be able to qualify if you: Get coverage through Medicare, MassHealth (Medicaid), or other public health insurance programs Are in jail at this time Are offered affordable, comprehensive health insurance from an employer. Note: If the cost of your employer’s health insurance plan for individuals is more than 9.56% of your income, then that coverage is not considered affordable. Household [...]

Tuesday, December 19th, 2017|

What if my income changes during the year? How will that affect my eligibility for a tax credit?

It’s common for income to change throughout the year, particularly if you are self-employed, have a seasonal job, or more than one job. To get the most accurate tax credit amount, you should let the Health Connector know if you have any income changes during the year, as they happen. If you expect your income to go up during the year, you may want to consider changing the amount of tax credit that you apply to your monthly premiums, so that you take less than the full amount available to you. If you use your tax credit during the year and your actual income is over the amount that makes you eligible, you may need to pay back some or all of the credit. You always have the option of waiting until you file your taxes next year to take the credit on your tax return, instead of applying it to your premiums in advance. This may make sense for you if you aren’t sure what your income will be for the year, and are concerned about having to pay money back at tax time.

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015|

Do I have to buy through the Health Connector if I want to get help paying for insurance?

Yes, help paying for insurance through tax credits and low-cost ConnectorCare plans is only available through the Health Connector. Even if you enroll in a plan without help paying for it through the Health Connector, if you end up qualifying for a tax credit based on your income for that year, the IRS will let you to claim the tax credit when you file your taxes at the end of the year. But the tax credit is not available for someone who buys a plan outside of the Health Connector. You can also apply through the Health Connector website to see if you qualify for MassHealth coverage.

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015|

What is an Advance Premium Tax Credit (APTC)?

An Advance Premium Tax Credit (APTC) is a new kind of federal tax credit that is calculated on a per tax household basis. If you are eligible to receive APTC, you may use it right away to lower what you pay for your monthly health plan premiums. Households who qualify can take the tax credit as advance payments to lower their monthly health plan premiums, making insurance more affordable. The maximum amount of APTC a tax household is eligible for is calculated and adjusted according to income, family size and the value of the second-lowest cost Silver Plan that all members of your  shopping group is eligible for. In order to use APTC, you must enroll in a plan through the Health Connector. Once you enroll, you can control how much of your tax credit you want to use to help pay your monthly health plan premiums. The premium tax credit is sent directly to your insurance company each month and applied to your premium, so you pay less out of your own pocket. Download the Guide to APTC with FAQs (PDF) → Download the Guide to Subsidies (PDF) →

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015|