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What's the Federal Poverty Level?

Who is this for?

Michigan Health Insurance – Customer Service – Learn More

If you buy your own health insurance, this explains how your income compared to the Federal Poverty Level affects what you pay for your plan.

Federal poverty guidelines are issued each year by the Department of Health and Human Services. The amounts are based on average income data calculated by the Census Bureau. Your eligibility for certain programs and benefits, including health insurance, is based on how your income compares to these guidelines, also called the Federal Poverty Level.

How the Federal Poverty Level affects your health coverage choices

The Federal Poverty Level is already used to decide who's eligible for government health insurance programs like Medicaid. Michigan recently voted to expand Medicaid. Beginning next spring, people with incomes up to 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level will be eligible for Medicaid.

In 2014, how your income compares to the Federal Poverty Level will also decide whether you can get help paying for your plan. This help is called a subsidy.

If your income is between 100 to 400 percent above the Federal Poverty Level, you're eligible for the Advanced Premium Tax Credit subsidy. It lowers what you pay each month for your health plan.

If your income is between 133 to 250 percent above the Federal Poverty Level, you're eligible for both the tax credit subsidy and Cost Sharing Reduction. This subsidy means you qualify for plans with lower cost-sharing amounts, like deductibles and coinsurance.

We've made it easy for you to find out if you're eligible for subsidies and how your income compares to the Federal Poverty Level. Just use our subsidy estimator.

For Native Americans

Members of federally-recognized tribes are eligible for additional help based on the Federal Poverty Level. If you're a Native American or an Alaska Native and your income is up to 300 percent of the Federal Poverty Level, you may qualify for plans with no cost-sharing. That means your plan has no deductible, copays or coinsurance. Learn more.

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