MEC Plans (Minimum Essential Coverage)

MEC Plans protect employers from high medical premiums, while providing Employees 63 wellness and preventative benefits.

What is Minimum Essential Coverage (MEC)?

Minimum Essential Coverage is the type of coverage you’ll need to avoid the fee for not having insurance under ObamaCare (the Affordable Care Act). In order to be in compliance with the law you must maintain minimum essential coverage throughout the year, get an exemption, or pay a fee for each month you go without it (although you are allowed less than three months in a row each year without coverage, due to a coverage gap exemption). You’ll report minimum essential coverage on your Federal Income Taxes for each month you or a dependent had coverage.

Benefits and Minimum Essential Coverage Types

The Affordable Care Act creates a lot of new rules and regulations for health insurance and adds some pretty ground breaking new benefits, rights, and protections. Some types of health insurance are required to follow all of ObamaCare’s rules and some aren’t. In a general sense, major medical plans that have to follow the majority of rules set forth by the ACA count as minimum essential coverage. That being said, minimum essential coverage is based on source rather than specific benefits or rules. You can find the types of coverage considered minimum essential coverage below.

Different types of minimum essential coverage, grandfathered plans, and non-grandfathered non-minimum essential coverage all have unique requirements of what rules they have to follow under the ACA.

What Types of Health Insurance are Minimum Essential Coverage?

In order to avoid the fee for not having health insurance you’ll have to obtain “minimum essential coverage” and maintain it throughout the year. Basically minimum essential coverage includes all Government and job based insurance and most Private Insurance. As a rule of thumb if you were allowed to keep your health insurance in 2014, bought major medical insurance on or off the marketplace, got covered through a public program, or got covered through work you typically have minimum essential coverage.

Minimum Essential Coverage List

Minimum essential coverage includes the following types of health insurance:

  • Employer-sponsored coverage (including COBRA coverage and retiree coverage)
  • Coverage purchased in the Individual Market, including a qualified health plan offered by the Health Insurance Marketplace (also known as an Affordable Insurance Exchange)
  • Medicare Part A coverage and Medicare Advantage plans
  • Most Medicaid coverage
  • Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage
  • Certain types of veterans health coverage administered by the Veterans Administration
  • TRICARE
  • Coverage provided to Peace Corps volunteers
  • Coverage under the Non-appropriated Fund Health Benefit Program
  • Refugee Medical Assistance supported by the Administration for Children and Families
  • Self-funded health coverage offered to students by universities for plan or policy years that begin on or before Dec. 31, 2014 (for later plan or policy years, sponsors of these programs may apply to HHS to be recognized as minimum essential coverage)
  • State high risk pools for plan or policy years that begin on or before Dec. 31, 2014 (for later plan or policy years, sponsors of these program may apply to HHS to be recognized as minimum essential coverage)