Covered California has been contacting about 98,000 families that must resolve eligibility inconsistencies in their 2014 enrollment documents.
The consumers will need to submit documents showing they are lawfully present in the United States as U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals or individuals with eligible immigration status, in order to continue their health insurance through Covered California. Notices were being mailed and emailed to consumers beginning the first week of September. If proper proof is not provided by Sept. 30, these individuals risk termination of health coverage.
“We want to clear these inconsistencies so that our consumers can have a smoother renewal process without any interruption in their coverage,” said Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee in a press release. “We’re implementing a multi-touch, multi-channel outreach approach to notify individuals who risk losing coverage.”
Covered California has been working to clear inconsistencies. To date, more than 700,000 documents have been verified and processed.
Documents submitted by consumers will be treated confidentially and will be used only to determine the consumers’ eligibility for health insurance programs and will not be used for immigration enforcement, Covered California said.
Some consumers may have previously provided Covered California the required documents, but the agency could not reconcile the information to verify citizenship or immigration status, according to Lee. For example, some documents were illegible, and in some cases two pieces of proof were needed, but only one document was sent, so the agency is requesting the documents be sent again.
The notices will provide consumers with a list of documents they can send to prove their lawful presence. The notices will be delivered in English and Spanish, and help also is available in other languages.
Consumers also will be instructed on how to upload the documents to their account, send them via U.S. mail or fax them to 1-888-329-3700. Also, thousands of partners, including Covered California Certified Insurance Agents, Certified Enrollment Counselors, Service Center representatives and county eligibility workers, will be available to help consumers submit the necessary documentation.
Lee stressed that consumers should act quickly to submit the requested documents.
“If we do not get your documents, Covered California must cancel your health insurance, along with any federal tax credit you may be receiving that lowers your monthly premiums,” Lee said. “If you have received tax credits, and your health insurance is canceled, you may have to repay those tax credits. If your health insurance is canceled, you may also have to pay a tax penalty.”
The following documents may prove eligible immigration status: a U.S. passport; a certificate of naturalization (N-550/N-570); a certificate of citizenship (N-560/N-561); a U.S. public birth certificate; a driver’s license issued by a U.S. state or territory; an identification card issued by the federal, state or local government; a school identification card; a foreign passport; and a green card. A complete list is at www.coveredca.com.