Maryland's Official Health Insurance Marketplace

Can my husband and I qualify for the tax credit if we file separately?

No, the Affordable Care Act prohibits married couples who file their taxes separately, rather than jointly, from receiving premium tax credits. (Married couples are not required to file taxes or file their taxes jointly to be determined eligible for Medicaid.)

  • If you’re married and will file a joint federal tax return for the year you want coverage: You’re eligible for a premium tax credit and other savings if you qualify based on your income and other factors.
  • If you’re married and will file separately for the year you want coverage: You can enroll in a Maryland Health Connection plan together but you’re not eligible for a premium tax credit or other savings, and you may have to complete a separate application.
  • If you’re married and plan to file as head of household for the year you want coverage: You can say you’re "unmarried" on your Maryland Health Connection application. You’re then eligible for a premium tax credit and other savings if you qualify based on your income and other factors. See IRS rules for filing as head of household.

Important: There’s an exception for people who are victims of domestic abuse. If you’re living apart from your spouse and can’t file a joint return with your spouse as a result of domestic abuse, you’re allowed to state on the application that you’re unmarried. This will allow Maryland Health Connection to determine if you qualify for premium tax credits and cost-sharing reductions. These savings depend on your household income and family size.