AHCCCS for People with Disabilities

Frequently Asked Questions

Note: If you get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or used to and now are on SSI 1619(b), you automatically get AHCCCS coverage. You do not need to apply for AHCCCS.

Health-e-Arizona is the easiest way to apply for AHCCCS if you think you might qualify. Health-e-Arizona also lets you apply for other benefits, like Nutrition Assistance (formerly Food Stamps), at the same time.

HealthCare.gov is a good option if you don’t think you will qualify for AHCCCS, because it will also check and see if you can get private coverage with subsidies.

The bottom line: Both systems will help you find the benefits you need. The big difference is that, depending on your situation, one might be a bit faster than the other.

In most cases, no. The actual medical coverage you get from AHCCCS will be the same, no matter how you qualified. Generally speaking, the big difference is that people with disabilities get extra ways to qualify and if you have a disability and start working, you can earn more while still getting AHCCCS coverage.

DB101 has four articles about different ways to get AHCCCS:

If you are not sure how you qualified for AHCCCS, you can ask your local DES/Family Assistance Administration office.

No, it is not the same as how much you make. When public programs look at your income to figure out if you should qualify, they don’t always count all of your income. What they do count is called “countable income.” This benefits you, because it means that you might have more income than the income limits for a program, but still qualify.

With AHCCCS, when your income is reviewed for eligibility as a person with a disability, there are actually two different ways they count your income. If you qualify based on one of these calculations, you can be eligible for AHCCCS. See the full explanation here.

Note: Countable income is used to see if you qualify for AHCCCS because of your disability. If you do not have a disability, AHCCCS will count all of your income. See DB101’s AHCCCS article for more information.

No. AHCCCS has no resource limit.

Yes. If you're getting SSI, you automatically get AHCCCS as well. You do not need to file an additional application.

If you’re on SSI and AHCCCS and your monthly SSI benefits drop to zero because your earned income goes up, Social Security’s 1619(b) provision lets you keep your AHCCCS coverage if you have $53,159 in earned income or less, as long as your resources don’t go above the SSI resource limit ($2,000 for an individual, $3,000 for a couple).

There are different health coverage options as your income goes up.

If you've been on SSI and AHCCCS and are eligible for SSI's 1619(a) or 1619(b) provisions, you can have up to $53,159 in earned income annually and still keep your AHCCCS coverage.

Another option for people with disabilities who are working is AHCCCS Freedom to Work. With AHCCCS Freedom to Work, you can work, earn up to $6,360 per month, and pay a monthly premium to get AHCCCS coverage.

If your income is above 138% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines (FPG) , you may be able to get government help to pay for individual insurance plans on HealthCare.gov.

The bottom line: There should be a health coverage option for everyone. If you have questions about the impact work will have on your health care, talk to a Work Incentive Consultant or get an idea of your options with DB101’s Benefits and Work Estimator.

AHCCCS: You only pay small copayments for medical services. You may qualify based on the rules described in DB101’s AHCCCS article or based on the rules described in the AHCCCS for People with Disabilities article. You automatically qualify for AHCCCS if you’re on Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or SSI’s 1619(b) provision.

AHCCCS Freedom to Work: You pay small copayments and may have a small monthly premium based on your income. If you are determined disabled by the Disability Determination Services Administration (DDSA) and are working, you may be able to make up to $6,360 per month and still qualify for AHCCCS Freedom to Work. To learn more about AHCCCS Freedom to Work, read DB101's AHCCCS Freedom to Work section.

Yes. If your family’s income is low enough for you to qualify for AHCCCS, you may do so even if your job offers insurance.

Note: If your job offers you affordable insurance, you and your family cannot get subsidies for purchasing an individual health plan through HealthCare.gov.

Yes, if you qualify for both. AHCCCS covers many services that Medicare doesn’t. If you have both AHCCCS and Medicare, you’ll have better health coverage and in most cases, AHCCCS will pay the premiums for your Medicare Part B and Part D. You will also have reduced copayments and deductibles.

  • Undocumented immigrants do not qualify for full AHCCCS coverage, but they may qualify for AHCCCS coverage for emergency services.
  • Most immigrants who have been legal residents for less than 5 years do not qualify for full AHCCCS coverage. However, they may qualify to get private coverage subsidized by the government.
  • Immigrants who have been legal residents for 5 years or longer and some other noncitizens who meet specific noncitizen requirements qualify for all of the same programs that citizens can get.

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