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More details on Savings through the American Rescue Plan

April 21, 2021

The Massachusetts Health Connector continues working to make American Rescue Plan savings available, so members can save more money on their health insurance.

The American Rescue Plan changes the highest amount someone must pay for their health insurance premiums, limiting it to 8.5 percent of their income.

Benefits Available Now:

The expanded help paying for health coverage through the Health Connector is now available to many Massachusetts residents.

  • Anyone who newly applies for help and is found eligible for more subsidies may see those savings now!
  • Health Connector members currently receiving subsidies are being automatically redetermined for additional subsidies now through the end of April.

Upcoming Changes:

Next month, anyone with income that was previously over the income limit for subsidies will be redetermined to see if they may newly qualify for subsidies. 

  • Individuals over 400 percent of FPL that did not apply for financial assistance and want to see if they are eligible for subsidies will need to come back to their application and apply for financial assistance.

The Health Connector is developing a new tool for people to preview what they may be eligible for, including estimated plan premiums with savings.

In the coming months, the Health Connector will provide access to a $0 premium Health Connector plan for anyone who received unemployment income in 2021. 

Benefits through COBRA:

The American Rescue Plan also gives a $0 premium for certain individuals on or eligible for COBRA. This $0 premium will be available from April through September 2021.

  • For some it may be beneficial to keep or enroll in COBRA. For others it may be beneficial to see what they will qualify for through the Health Connector. 
  • Individuals interested in receiving COBRA subsidies should talk to their employer/former employer.

The Health Connector has newly established a Special Enrollment Period that will allow those who lose COBRA subsidies next fall to shop and enroll in Health Connector plans.

Benefits through tax relief:

The American Rescue Plan also provides tax relief for people who may have had too much Advance Premium Tax Credit (APTC) applied to their health insurance in 2020 and would normally have to pay back some of that money when filing their 2020 tax return.

The IRS recently released new information about this tax relief for people who received an APTC in 2020, including those who already filed their tax return or still need to file.

For 2020 only, overpayments of APTC do not need to be repaid to the IRS. This change may affect how people complete their 2020 tax return, which is due May 17, 2021.

Please review this new information as it will help you better assist someone who had health insurance through the Massachusetts Health Connector and received an Advance Premium Tax Credit in 2020.

The Health Connector