If you have been approved for a Medicaid program for you and/or a family member, it is important to update your local Medicaid office (known as Family and Social Services Administration [FSSA] in Indiana) when you have major changes in your life. The same applies if you have purchased a health insurance plan through The Marketplace. I realize that this can be difficult. When you are moving, changing jobs, or bringing a new child into your life, notifying the FSSA office or Marketplace may be the last thing on your mind. However, it’s important to remember that your health insurance coverage can depend upon reporting these changes quickly and effectively. Here are a few examples of major life changes:
•Get married or divorced
•Have a child, adopt a child, or place a child for adoption
•Have a change in income/get a new job
•Get health coverage through a job
•Change your place of residence
•Have a change in disability status
•Gain or lose a dependent
•Experience other changes that may affect your income and household size
•Other changes to report: change in tax filing status; change of citizenship or immigration status; incarceration or release from incarceration; change in status as an American Indian/Alaska Native or tribal status; correction to name, date of birth, or Social Security number.
If you fail to report these changes FSSA you can risk losing Medicaid coverage. If you fail to report changes to The Marketplace, you risk higher tax fines when you file your taxes at the end of the year. Reporting these changes is quick and easy to do, just follow these steps:
For The Marketplace, you can report these changes 2 ways:
•Online – Log in to your account at www.healthcare.gov. Select your application, then select “Report a life change” from the menu on the left.
•By phone – Contact the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596 (TTY: 1-855-889-4325)
For Medicaid Programs (in Indiana these programs include HIP, Hoosier Healthwise, and Medicaid Disability):
•Phone – call 1-800-403-0864. Follow the prompts and let the FSSA representative know that you have a life change you would like to report. She will instruct you what to do next and explain what steps you will need to take to verify information
If you receive paperwork from The Marketplace or from FSSA, make sure you respond to the letters as quickly as possible. More than likely, they are requesting information to verify something you have said (i.e. your income, your address, number of people living with you, assets you may have, etc.). There is often a deadline you have to meet and if you surpass that deadline, you may risk losing coverage. As always, if you have a question you should call the phone number listed on your letter.
Life is always changing. One thing that does not change is the fact that you and your family need dependable health insurance. There are Navigators all over the United States who are willing and able to help you find the health insurance coverage that best suits your needs—no matter what life may throw at you. You can find a list of Navigators in your area by going to https://localhelp.healthcare.gov/. If you live in Indiana and you think you may qualify for a Medicaid program, you can call 1-800-403-0864. They can direct you to your local FSSA office (there’s one in every county) or answer your questions directly.