What if I don’t know what my income will be next year?

When you apply for financial assistance through Maryland Health Connection, you will be asked to estimate your expected income for the upcoming year. Often a good place to start is to consider what your income is this year, or what income you reported on your tax return last year.

However, if your circumstances have changed since then, for example, if you recently lost your job, you should make your best estimate of what your income will be next year.

Maryland Health Connection will compare your estimated income against records at the Internal Revenue Service, Social Security Administration and other sources. If your estimate and official records don’t match, but you meet all other eligibility requirements, you will be asked to provide documentation to support your income projections.

If you are eligible for Medicaid or eligible for enrollment in a qualified health plan, you may enroll in health coverage through Maryland Health Connection for up to 90 days while you gather and submit your income documentation for verification. You may also receive the premium tax credit and cost-sharing reductions during the 90 day period. It is very important that you provide any documentation requested by Maryland Health Connection in a timely manner; if you don’t your coverage may change or be terminated.

If you experience a change in income during the year, you should report it to Maryland Health Connection. Keep in mind that if you are eligible for premium tax credit and if you estimate your income incorrectly and end up claiming more help than you are eligible for, you may have to pay back some or all of the premium tax credit you received. If you over-estimate your income and end up claiming less help than you are entitled to, the difference will be refunded to you when you file your income taxes the following year.