Note: Use the button above to get quotes on standard health insurance plans. Quoting for Exchange Plans in California will begin on October 1, 2013 for an effective date of January 1, 2014.

California Exchange Plans > Options 

What are my health insurance options in 2014?

Understand Essential Benefits and How to Enroll in California Exchange Plans

2014 will not only bring in a new year but also signify changes to America's health care scene. All Americans, those that are citizens and those that are in the process of becoming citizens, will need to have health insurance or be required to pay a penalty. There will be a few allowed exceptions to this mandate, but for most of us, this will apply. 

The government is still working out the details, but the expectation is that people who are currently insured on individual or family plans may need to switch to a qualified health plan effective January 1, 2014. And again, there will be exceptions to this as well. Stay tuned in and we will let you know the latest on this.

I'm uninsured now. What are my options for getting insurance in 2014?

You will have several options:
  • Enroll in the expanded Medicaid/Medi-Cal program.
  • Apply for a government subsidized Exchange plan.
  • Purchase a standard health plan outside the Exchange.
  • Join a group health plan if offered by your employer.
The factor that will determine which direction you go will mainly be determined by your income level. While everyone doesn't have to go to the Exchange (a government shopping mall for insurance) in order to get health coverage, if you qualify and want to take advantage of the federal subsidy, then, you will need to go through the California Exchange.

Following is a reference guide to help you determine the health insurance option(s) that may work best for you. 

 Find Your Household Size and Gross Family Income:
 Household Size Column A:  100% FPL (1) Column B: 133% FPL Column C: 400% FPL
Column D: 
Over 400% FPL
 1 Up to $11,490 $14,856 $45,960  + $45,960
 2 Up to $15,510 $20,628 $62,040  + $62,040
 3 Up to $19,530 $25,975 $78,120  + $78,120
 4 Up to $23,550 $31,322 $94,200 + $94,200 
 5 Up to $27,570 $36,668 $110,280  + $110,280
 6 Up to $31,590 $42,015 $126,360  + $126,360
 7 Up to $35,610 $47,361 $142,440 + $142,440 
 8 Up to $39,630 $52,708 $158,520 + $158,520 
For each additional person, add: Up to $4,020 $5,347 $16,080 + $16,080 
Apply for: Medi-Cal Exchange Plans
Private Plan, 
Group Plan, 
or Medi-Cal (2), if eligible 
(1) Based on 2013 Federal Poverty Levels from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
       The poverty guidelines are for contiguous states, including the District of Columbia.
(2) You could have a high income and still qualify for Medi-Cal. Click Medi-Cal Eligibility for more

If your gross (before taxes) family income is:
  • Below 100% of the federal poverty level (less than Column A above), you will want to contact Medi-Cal to apply for the expanded Medicaid Program.
  • Between 133% and 400% of the federal poverty level (not less than Column B but no more than Column C), you will qualify for a federal subsidy. You more than likely will want to apply for an Exchange plan. Remember though that the higher the income, the lower the subsidy will be. So if group insurance or other coverage options are available, don't automatically disregard them. Compare the costs and consider the one that is best-suited for your situation.
  • Over 400% of the federal poverty level (more than Column C), you won't qualify for a government subsidy. You can still apply through the California Exchange, but since a subsidy advantage is unlikely, consider shopping for insurance outside the Exchange. Going through an agent, broker, or directly to the carrier may be better because some carriers are planning to offer additional health plans outside the Exchange and you could find a better option.
Important note: Exceptions may apply to the eligibility thresholds for Exchange plans, Medi-Cal, and other public health programs. Also, if you go to the Exchange but it's more beneficial for you to enroll on Medicaid/Medi-Cal, the California Exchange will redirect you; there's no wrong door.

I'm insured now. What do I need to do?

The best thing you can do is stay in touch with your broker, agent, or insurance representative. They will provide you updates and assistance in switching plans, if necessary. If you do not currently have someone who can help you, give us a call at 707-571-7501 and we would be happy to walk through your options with you.

If some consumers are required to switch to a qualified health plan, as is anticipated, then, people who are currently insured will be notified by their carrier. Should this happen, consumers would need to dis-enroll from their current plan at the end of 2013, then, re-enroll for a qualified health plan effective January 1, 2014. An exception to this could be people who are on grandfathered plans, which would be health policies that were effective prior to March 23, 2010, the date Health Care Reform went into effect.

Apply During Open Enrollment: October 2013 - March 2014

Starting October 1, 2013, you can begin shopping for Health Care Reform plans through the California Exchange. You may apply between October 1st and December 15th for an effective date of January 1, 2014. After that, you must apply by the 15th of the month in order to begin coverage on the 1st of the next month. The last day of open enrollment is March 31, 2014. If you apply between March 16th and March 31st, you will be enrolled for a June 1, 2014 effective date.

Once the first open enrollment period is over, you must wait until the next open enrollment period to sign up for a plan. An exception to this rule would be qualifying events such as the birth of a child, an adoption, or loss of coverage.

October of 2013, you'll be able to obtain Health Reform Plans through the California Health Insurance Exchange. At that time, will be available to offer assistance by providing quotes, explaining benefits and the application process.
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