California Health Care

For many workers in the U.S., one of the perks of being hired by a company is getting health insurance coverage from it. Employer-sponsored health coverage is the most common type of private health insurance in the country. Not everyone who works for a company or who provides services to a business is eligible for health insurance coverage from it, though. In many cases, part-time employees can’t get coverage. 

Independent contractors, or 1099 employees, also typically don’t get employer-sponsored health coverage. This is because independent contractors are technically self-employed. However, some companies might offer group health insurance to their independent contractors. Learn more about the difference between 1099 and other types of workers and what the health insurance options are for the self-employed.

The phrase “1099 employee” is technically a misnomer, as a person who gets paid on a 1099 basis is legally not an employee of a company. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS)...


Millions of Americans have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, physically, emotionally and financially. According to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, over 9.5 million workers lost their jobs during the crisis, and 4 million of the unemployed have been out of work for half a year or longer.

In response to the pandemic, Congress passed the American Rescue Plan, and President Joe Biden recently signed the bill into law. The American Rescue Plan aims to bring temporary relief to individuals and businesses and help them recover from the pandemic’s economic impact. One component of the act focuses on improving access to affordable health insurance.

How does this plan affect your health care as a California resident? Let’s explore the American Rescue Plan and what it means for health insurance coverage in California.

On March 11, 2021, President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP). This $1.9 trillion plan provides funding for various programs, businesses...

Posted: May 7th, 2021

An app-based driver is someone who drives for a ride-hailing app like Lyft and Uber or other apps like Postmates, Instacart and DoorDash. Someone who works as a driver for one of these apps either provides pre-arranged transportation services or on-demand delivery services in a personal vehicle. Working as an app-based driver can be a great side gig for someone who wants to use their weekends or a few hours each weekday after their full-time job to earn some extra money.

If you are an Uber driver or Lyft driver or you want to become an app-based driver in California, you should know about CA Proposition 22.

Prop 22 in California was a ballot measure that determined ride-hailing companies should classify workers as independent contractors. The measure allows these companies to adopt the corresponding wage and labor policies. The initiative was voted on during the state election in November 2020.

CA Proposition 22 is an exception to Assembly Bill 5, which states that gig-economy workers m...

Posted: May 7th, 2021

If you are enrolling yourself or your family in Covered California or in Medi-Cal, you no longer have to be concerned about that affecting citizenship or being a “Public Charge.”

The Public Charge ruling, which was of concern during the time of President Trump, has been rescinded by President Biden. This is no longer an issue and will not have any bearing on applications for citizenship.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has stopped applying the 2019 Public Charge regulation to all pending applications and petitions. Purchasing insurance through Covered California and receiving financial help to pay for the insurance does not make an individual a “Public Charge”.

Also, Medi-Cal for adults or children is NO LONGER considered a public charge.

You may enroll through Covered California. You may enroll in Medi-Cal. Or, you may enroll a mixed family where adults are on Covered California and the children are enrolled in Medi-Cal. None of these would be consi...

Posted: April 14th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

Medicare is the U.S. health insurance program designed to provide coverage to people over the age of 65, as well as individuals with end-stage renal disease and younger people with certain disabilities. One of the key benefits of Medicare is to help to control a person’s health care costs as they get older. As long as a person meets certain requirements, there are no premium payments for certain types of Medicare and the care you receive is often free or low-cost.

Although Medicare can provide coverage for much of your health care needs, it doesn’t cover everything. For that reason, some people decide to purchase supplemental Medicare coverage, also known as a Medigap policy. There are several reasons why Medigap might make sense for you and provide the most comprehensive form of health coverage. Learn more about what’s covered by Medicare and what you can get from purchasing a supplemental Medicare insurance plan in California.

People over age 65 have a few options for getting sup...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

 

With high deductibles and rising health care costs across the nation, more and more Americans are looking for ways to make their medical care more affordable. One method many Americans are turning to is opening a health savings account, also referred to as an HSA. HSAs are widely considered by financial experts to be one of the best savings options available to consumers.

If you’re considering enrolling in an HSA, you may be wondering — what does an HSA cover? Do I qualify for an HSA? If I meet HSA requirements, how can I open an account? In this guide, we’ll provide answers to all these questions and many more.

A health savings account (HSA) is a savings account used with a high-deductible qualifying health insurance plan. This savings account is appealing to many consumers because money can be drawn from the account tax-free. Thus, consumers can use their pre-tax dollars to pay for their qualifying medical expenses. In California, you can enroll in a high deductible HSA if you...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

Do you need supplemental insurance? The short answer is yes. Supplemental insurance is used to complement insurance plans that provide basic medical coverage. Supplemental coverage often refers to supplemental dental insurance and supplemental vision insurance. It can also cover expenses that your primary plan doesn’t cover, like coinsurance, copayments or deductibles.

If you have health insurance through your employer, you may think you don’t need to purchase supplemental insurance plans. Most people don’t realize their insurance is lacking until they receive a medical bill and find that a health care service isn’t covered.

Though many medical insurance plans leave much to be desired in the adequacy of their coverage, supplemental health plans like dental insurance and vision insurance can fill the gaps in your current coverage.

Why is having dental coverage important? Maybe you see dental insurance as just another bill to pay, but in truth, dental insurance is worth the small p...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

After a year when health care remained top of mind across the nation, 2021 should be another year with the industry in the spotlight. The COVID-19 pandemic and its complications continue to be a source of concern. You can expect to see the emergence of changes in health care for 2021 helping the nation move forward. 

There are challenges to overcome in 2021, but some positive developments are likely to advance the medical field and empower Americans to receive a higher quality of health care from now on.

In 2021, some crucial hurdles will shape the health care industry. The pandemic’s ripple effects will continue to be a major focal point, as will health care reform considerations. 

For the health care industry as a whole and for individual Americans, COVID-19 will continue to be a chief concern, and rightly so. The COVID-19 crisis was all-consuming in 2020. Compared to the overwhelming effects the health care industry experienced last year, this year — which has already seen declin...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

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:

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.

Details are being worked out. We anticipate it working like thi...


Due to Proposition 22, app-based drivers working for companies like Uber, Lyft, Door Dash, Grub Hubb, etc. receive money toward their health care coverage from the app-based company. They can enroll through Covered California, receive subsidies, and receive additional money from the company toward the cost of their health care. However, they do need to submit documentation to prove they have enrolled in a health insurance plan.

Covered California announced today:

Proposition 22 Proof of Coverage forms are available today for PDF download. Because some app-based network companies have strict submission windows, consumers who are app-based drivers should upload their Proof of Coverage PDFs to their network company(ies) site as soon as possible. Some companies may not pay stipends for a Proof of Coverage document received after their specified date.

Please note: For future quarters, Proof of Coverage documents will be available the first day after the close of the quarter. For example, Qua...


Not sure how Obamacare affects your health care plans in California? Learn how the ACA works in California, including benefits, costs and enrollment.

Covered California is the Golden State’s official health exchange marketplace where individuals, families and small businesses can find high-quality, low-cost California government health insurance.

Learn about Obamacare income guidelines in California using our income limits chart, and see if you’re eligible for government assistance.

Learn about the Covered California website. Find easy online enrollment. Set up your account, log in, buy insurance and more on the California health marketplace website.