What types of health insurance count as coverage?
To avoid the penalty for not having insurance you must be enrolled in qualifying health coverage (sometimes called “minimum essential coverage”).
Examples of qualifying health coverage
If you’re covered by any of the following types of plans, you’re considered covered under the health care law and don’t have to pay a penalty.
- Any health plan bought through the Health Insurance Marketplace
- Individual health plans bought outside the Health Insurance Marketplace, if they meet the standards for qualified health plans
- Any “grandfathered” individual insurance plan you’ve had since March 23, 2010 or earlier
- Any job-based plan, including retiree plans and COBRA coverage
- Medicare Part A or Part C (but Part B coverage by itself doesn’t qualify)
- Most Medicaid coverage, except for limited coverage plans
- The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
- Coverage under a parent’s plan
- Most student health plans (check with your school to see if the plan counts as qualifying health coverage)
- Health coverage for Peace Corps volunteers
- Certain types of veterans health coverage through the Department of Veterans Affairs
- Most TRICARE plans
- Department of Defense Nonappropriated Fund Health Benefits Program
- Refugee Medical Assistance
- State high-risk pools for plan or policy years that started on or before December 31, 2014 (check with your high-risk pool plan to see if it counts as qualifying health coverage)
See a more detailed list of types of plans that do and don’t count as qualifying health coverage from the IRS.
Health plans that don’t count as coverage
Some products that help pay for medical services don’t qualify. If you have only this kind of product, you may have to pay the fee. Examples include:
- Coverage only for vision care or dental care
- Workers’ compensation
- Coverage only for a specific disease or condition
- Plans that offer only discounts on medical services