Question: If I am getting premium assistance and the premium on my plan rises by 20% next year, does that mean I’m going to have to pay 20% more out of my pocket than I did this year?
Answer: Not necessarily. As premiums rise, so do tax credits, which means that, all things being equal, the premium assistance will absorb at least some of the rate hike. But you won’t be able to research your specific situation until early October. Because the Covered California online shopping tool won’t be updated for 2017 rates until then. If you already have a Covered California plan, you will receive a notice from Covered California in October explaining how much your current plan’s premium will change and what your tax credits — if any — will be for next year. You can keep the same plan at the new rate or switch plans during open enrollment.