Unemployment in 2021? Get a Big Health Insurance Discount.
Posted: April 08, 2021
In August of 2021, Consumers Who Have Been on EDD for 1+ Weeks This Year May Qualify for the Silver 94 at $1/mo.
Due to the Federal UI Supplement of the American Rescue Plan, if someone has received unemployment insurance for at least one week in 2021, then they qualify for the following:
- Income set at 138.1% regardless of their actual income
- Ability to enroll on a Silver 94 Plan for $1.00 per month*
When will the Federal UI Supplement go into effect?
This discount is approved for the entire year of 2021. However, Covered California is not expected to implement this until August of this year.
In July or August, Covered California plans to add the question about Unemployment Insurance to the CALHEERS application. If you affirm that you have received unemployment income in 2021, then you will receive rates based on an income that is 138.1% of the Federal Poverty Level. See Covered California Income Chart.
Note: Normally at 138.1% of FPL, children ages 0-18 would end up on Medi-Cal. However, this UI Discount will not cause children to end up on Medicaid/Medi-Cal who would not have qualified otherwise. Medi-Cal eligibility will still be based on the full income and the associated Federal Poverty Level.
What about the money I was supposed to receive from earlier months?
Details are being worked out. We anticipate it working like this: If you were enrolled through the State Exchange on a discounted Covered California plan as of January 1, 2021, then you will qualify for the unemployment discount for the whole year. The discounts you did not receive for prior months will result in you getting extra money back on your taxes when you file in 2022 for tax-year 2021.
Perhaps you did not enroll through the exchange for January 1, but you still have prior months in 2021 on subsidized coverage. In that cast, those prior months should cause you to qualify for extra discounts that will be reconciled when you file your taxes next year.
If you had not previously been on discounted health insurance through Covered California, then we expect that you will not receive the discounts for previous months. However, we expect that you should be able to get the discount from August through to the end of the year.
What if my income goes way up?
That should not make a difference. This discount is not based on your income. It is solely based on the fact that you were on unemployment insurance with the Employment Development Department for one or more weeks in 2021.
California Insurance Agent, Esmeralda Mercado, commented, “Wow! So, if they were on EDD a week, then got a $100,000 job, the reduced rate would still apply.”
* If you qualify, you can enroll in the 1st or 2nd cheapest Silver 94 for $1/mo. If you choose a more expensive plan, it could cost more, but would still be very affordable. Also, legislation is being considered in Sacramento that would allow plans to cost as little as $0 a month, making free health insurance a reality in California.