New Healthcare Special-Enrollment Period Announced!

 CSEA has been working to raise awareness of the state penalty for failure to have healthcare, which will impact uninsured taxpayers when they file their 2020 state tax returns. Over the past months, we shared concerns regarding the number of uninsured individuals still unaware of the penalties. We addressed it at the FTB Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights Hearing, Jim Stern Legislative Day, and in a letter sent to members of the CA Legislature.

We are happy to report that in a February 18 news release, Covered CA announced a new special-enrollment period specifically created for those who are unaware of the state penalty for failure to have qualifying health care or an exemption, or who are unaware of the new financial help available through Covered CA. Consumers who fall into those categories, or who are currently insured directly through an insurer and want to switch to Covered CA, will have through April 30 to sign up for coverage! The news release also provides data on the number of Californians who signed up for coverage this year, and reports on outreach efforts for expanding coverage through the new April 30 deadline.

As a result of our advocacy efforts, Covered CA has informed us that they see the tax practitioner community as an invaluable resource for educating the public on how to get coverage, and we are working together to develop and distribute a healthcare toolkit for Members to share with clients.

In the meantime, Enrolled Agents looking to educate their clients have resources available to them, including the “Special Enrollment Period for State Subsidy or Penalty Fact Sheet,” which provides more information about how to get coverage, and FTB’s “Individual Shared Responsibility Penalty Estimator,” which helps consumers estimate their potential penalty.