The Affordable Care Act is intended to provide the lowest cost health coverage for an individual or family based on their income level. For individuals or families whose income is below 138% of the Federal Poverty Line (FPL) the lowest cost option is often Medicaid. Individuals or families whose income is greater than 138% FPL typically will not qualify for Medicaid, but may qualify for private insurance subsidies known as Advance Premium Tax Credits (which lower monthly insurance premiums) or Cost Sharing Reductions (which lower the cost of medical services). In addition, adults who do not qualify for Medicaid may still have children who qualify for assistance through the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The most important part of the enrollment process, then, is to determine which level(s) of coverage you or your family may qualify for.
Enrollment in a Qualified Health Plan (QHP) is typically limited to the Open Enrollment period, which occurs only once per year. In 2017 the Open Enrollment periods begins on November 1st and ends on December 15th. In order to receive coverage by January 1st, 2018, you must complete your application by December 15th, 2017. For more information on Open Enrollment please see What is Open Enrollment?
Individuals who experience certain types of life changes may qualify for a “Special Enrollment Period,” which allows for changes in enrollment outside of the Open Enrollment period. Qualifying Life Events include changes to income/employment, residence, or family composition. Please visit healthcare.gov for more information on Special Enrollment Periods and Qualifying Life Events.
There are no limitations on the enrollment period for Medicaid or CHIP. If you qualify, coverage can begin immediately, any time of year.
The Enrollment Process
The first step of enrollment the process is to provide some basic information about your income and household composition using an anonymous pre-screener tool. This pre-screener is hosted by Nevada’s Medicaid agency, the Division of Welfare and Supportive Services, and is designed to identify potential eligibility for Medicaid/CHIP. If the tool identifies potential Medicaid/CHIP eligibility then you’ll be directed to submit a Medicaid application, otherwise you’ll be directed to healthcare.gov to begin the process of enrolling in a Qualified Health Plan from a private insurance carrier.
If you’re ready to begin the application process you can start the pre-screener now (PLEASE NOTE: you will be directed away from the Nevada Health Link website). However, we recommend that you read the following pages in this section to learn more about Open Enrollment, key dates for 2017, and what information you’ll need to complete the enrollment process.
Help With Enrollment
Nevada Health Link provides a number of options for help with the enrollment process. For a complete list of resources please visit our Get Help page.
For in-person assistance please use our in-person assister lookup tool to locate a licensed broker or insurance agent near you.