Individuals & Families

Tools and Resources for Individuals and Families

Use this area of the website to find important resources and tools, such as downloadable applications, where to locate a navigator, how to get started, and find up-to-date information, reminders, and guidance throughout the Open Enrollment period and beyond.

Not sure how to start. Start here

Not sure how to get started?

The next Open Enrollment period is November 1, 2020 through May 23, 2021. But, you may qualify to enroll in coverage any time of the year if you are eligible for certain programs or experienced a qualifying event. Use our Getting Started Guide if you are applying for coverage today.

Click here to download paper applications

Download Shopping Guides

Not sure how to choose the best plan for you? Visit this page to download copies of ConnectorCare or Health Connector plan shopping guides.

Get updates from the Health Connector

Get the latest updates

Find frequent updates from the Health Connector. We share detailed information about new features, topics related to national health care reform, and more

National Health Care Reform and the Self-Employed

People who are self-employed or have fluctuating incomes may benefit from new ways of determining eligibility for help paying for health insurance coverage under national health care reform.

These individuals may include:

  • Self Employed Workers
  • Combination Income Workers (e.g., those who have W-2 income/employee income and 1099/self-employment income)
  • Seasonal Workers
  • Temporary Workers
  • Students
  • Couples and Families with a self-employed member

Learn More →

Certificate of Exemption and Minimum Creditable Coverage

If you face a special financial hardship, the state’s tax forms give you an option to appeal the penalties for remaining uninsured. In addition, the Health Connector offers a Certificate of Exemption for individuals who can provide information about the 2020 tax year before it ends.

If you missed the December 1, 2020 deadline to apply for an exemption for 2020 when filing your taxes, remember you will also have the opportunity to request an exemption when filing your 2020 Massachusetts state tax return. 

Related Resources

Two concepts form the basis of the exemptions process:

  • “Minimum Creditable Coverage” – the essential health insurance benefits you need to avoid tax penalties in Massachusetts. Learn more ►
  • “Affordability” – the cost of the essential health insurance benefits. Based on that cost, your income, the health insurance options available to you, or a special hardship, you may be exempt from the tax penalties.

Use our Calendar Year 2020 Affordability Information Sheet to predict your penalty risk. An official penalty determination will come later, when you file your 2019 state tax return.

2020 Health Connector Affordability Information Sheet

Please note that national health care reform also requires most adults and children to have health insurance.  Looking for information about the federal requirements, including exemptions?  Please visit to learn more.

Massachusetts Individual Mandate

Massachusetts has an “individual health insurance mandate” which requires most adults to carry health insurance if it is affordable to them and that meets certain coverage standards (referred to as “Minimum Creditable Coverage” (MCC). The Massachusetts Health Connector sets the coverage and affordability standards, and the Massachusetts Department of Revenue (DOR) administers the requirement via the state tax filing process. Please note that the standards described here are specific to the Massachusetts health reform law (not the Affordable Care Act, the federal health reform law).

Continue reading to find out what you need to know about the individual mandate →