Is individual health insurance right for me?
Who is this for?
If you're exploring health coverage options, this will help you understand whether an individual insurance plan is right for you.
Health insurance you buy on your own—not through an employer or association—is called individual coverage. It could be right for you if you are:
- In between jobs for more than three months
- No longer covered by a parent's health care plan
- Unable to get affordable coverage through an employer
- Age 65 or older
If you're under age 65
If you don't have a plan through an employer, individual coverage is not only right, it's required for almost everyone by the Affordable Care Act. You might have to pay a penalty if you go without coverage.
Think you can't afford health insurance on your own? The first thing you can do is use our subsidy estimator to see if you're eligible for financial assistance. Many people are.
Depending on your income and age, you may also be eligible for:
If the coverage your employer offers doesn't meet certain federal guidelines, you may be eligible to purchase individual insurance instead.
- The lowest-priced plan your employer offers can't cost you more than 9.5 percent of your household income.
- The plan meets minimum value, or pays for at least 60 percent of the cost for covered services.
Your employer's required to let you know whether your plan meets these guidelines. If it doesn't, you can see if buying your own insurance is cheaper.
Individual coverage isn't just for individuals. You can get a plan that covers you and your family. We have medical plans and dental plans, some with vision for adults, for every budget.
If you're age 65 or older
It's likely you're eligible for Medicare. That's another kind of individual health insurance. Unlike plans you have when you're under age 65, Medicare plans only cover one person.
You can learn more about signing up for Medicare and shop for plans on our Medicare site.