This article is a section taken from MinnesotaCare Non-Financial Eligibility a part of the revisions and additions to the Minnesota Health Care Program Eligibility Policy Manual.

Insurance Barriers

Other Health Coverage

Other health coverage may be a barrier to MinnesotaCare eligibility.

  • Access to some types of health coverage is always a barrier, even if the person is not enrolled.
  • Some types of health care coverage are a barrier to MinnesotaCare only if the person is enrolled in the coverage.
  • Some types of health care coverage are never a barrier to MinnesotaCare.

See Appendix C Types of Other Health Care Coverage for a list of different types of health care coverage and whether or not they are a barrier to MinnesotaCare eligibility.

Employer-Sponsored Coverage

Employer-sponsored coverage is a barrier to MinnesotaCare eligibility for an employee in the following circumstances:

  • The employee has access to coverage that meets both the minimum value and affordability standards.
  • The employee is enrolled in the coverage, regardless of whether it meets the minimum value or affordability standards.

Access to employer-sponsored coverage that meets both the minimum value and affordability standards is a barrier to MinnesotaCare eligibility for people even if they did not enroll in the employer-sponsored coverage at the time of the employer’s open enrollment period or during a special enrollment period.

A person does not have access to employer-sponsored coverage until the first day of the first full month it is available to the person.

Minimum Value Standard for Employer-Sponsored Coverage

An employer-sponsored health plan meets the minimum value standard if it covers at least 60 percent of the total allowed costs under the plan.

Affordability Standard for Employer-Sponsored Coverage
An employer-sponsored health plan is affordable if the employee’s portion of the annual premiums for employee-only coverage does not exceed 9.69 percent of their annual household income for the tax year. The lowest-cost plan for employee-only coverage is used when determining affordability.

Employer-Sponsored Coverage for a Spouse and Dependents

Employer-sponsored coverage is a barrier to MinnesotaCare eligibility for an employee’s spouse or dependents if they are enrolled in the coverage, regardless of whether the employer-sponsored coverage meets the minimum value and affordability standards.

Employer-sponsored coverage that meets both the minimum value and affordability standards for the employee is a barrier to MinnesotaCare eligibility for the following people if they have access to enroll in the coverage, regardless of whether they enroll:

  • People the employee expects to claim as a tax dependent
  • The employee’s spouse, if either of the following is true:
    • The employee and the spouse expect to file taxes jointly
    • The employee and the spouse do not expect to file taxes jointly, but the employee expects to claim a personal exemption for the spouse. The employee expects to claim a personal exemption for the spouse when they expect to list and count the spouse on a federal income tax return.

Employer-sponsored coverage is a barrier to eligibility for these people if they did not enroll in the employer-sponsored coverage at the time of the employer’s open enrollment period or during a special enrollment period.

Change in Affordability for Employer-Sponsored Coverage

If a person’s employer-sponsored coverage is determined unaffordable at application and becomes affordable at some point later in the employer-sponsored plan year, they remain eligible for MinnesotaCare for the remainder of the employer-sponsored plan year. Once the person is able to enroll in affordable employer-sponsored coverage through an open enrollment period, they are no longer eligible for MinnesotaCare.

  • If a person is determined eligible for MinnesotaCare because they provide incorrect information regarding the affordability of their employer-sponsored plan at application, they can be disenrolled following 10-day advance notice requirements.
  • If a person is determined eligible for MinnesotaCare because they did not update information regarding the affordability of their employer-sponsored plan at the time of their renewal, they can be disenrolled following 10-day advance notice requirements.

Voluntary Disenrollment from Employer-Sponsored Coverage

People who are ineligible for MinnesotaCare because they are enrolled in employer-sponsored coverage may qualify for MinnesotaCare if the employer-sponsored coverage does not meet either the affordability or minimum value standard and they disenroll from the coverage. Eligibility begins the month after the employer-sponsored coverage ends.

Post-Employment Employer-Sponsored Coverage

Health insurance available to former employees and dependents of former employees, such as continuation coverage under COBRA or retiree insurance, is only a barrier to MinnesotaCare eligibility if a person is enrolled in the coverage.

Legal Citations

Code of Federal Regulations, title 26, section 1.36B-2
Code of Federal Regulations, title 26, section 1.5000A-2
Code of Federal Regulations, title 26, section 1.5000A-3
Code of Federal Regulations, title 42, section 600.305
Minnesota Statutes, section 256L.07

CREDIT: The content of this post has been copied or adopted from the Minnesota Healthcare Programs Eligibility Policy Manual, originally published by the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

This is also part of a series of posts on Minnesota Healthcare Eligibility Policies.