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I am a young adult

September 2010

  • You are be able to stay on parents’ insurance until your 26th birthday, at your parents’ choice, regardless of school enrollment status, even if your employer offers you coverage and even if you are otherwise completely financially independent of your parents.


  • You will be eligible for Medicaid if your income is below 133 percent of the federal poverty level (about $14,400 a year).
  • If you income is higher, but still below $43,320 a year(4 times the poverty level for an individual), you can get subsidies to buy private health insurance from a state-run health insurance exchange, which would offer a menu of choices, including a catastrophic policy available to people under 30.

When you turn 26:

  • You can buy insurance through your employer or through an exchange.
  • You may be eligible for government subsidies or a voucher from your employer to buy coverage in the exchange.
  • If you still cannot afford to buy insurance, you could apply for a hardship waiver.
  • Insurers can no longer discriminate against adults with pre-existing conditions.

Want more information?

Here’s our favorite fact sheet from Families USA about the Young Adult provision in the Affordable Care Act