This is really confusing. Where can I get help?

Back to top

Where can I sign up?

Back to top
There are different ways to apply for AHCCCS Freedom to Work:
  • Online using Health-e-Arizona. Health-e-Arizona lets you apply for other programs like Nutrition Assistance or TANF Cash Assistance at the same time.
  • Online using Healthcare.gov, an online one-stop shop where you can learn about your public and private coverage options.
  • Using a paper application the AHCCCS Freedom to Work office can mail you. To ask for an application, call 1-602-417-6677 in Maricopa County or 1-800-654-8713 in the rest of Arizona.

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 and do not have to pay a premium.

Which is better, Health-e-Arizona or Healthcare.gov?

Back to top
Health-e-Arizona is the easiest way to apply for AHCCCS Freedom to Work 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 Freedom to Work, because it will also check 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.

What is the difference between AHCCCS and AHCCCS Freedom to Work?

Back to top
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 $4,948 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.

Who is eligible for AHCCCS Freedom to Work?

Back to top
To qualify for AHCCCS Freedom to Work, you must:
Your AHCCCS Freedom to Work Countable Income (compared to FPG):

What is the AHCCCS Freedom to Work income limit?

Back to top
You may be able to qualify for AHCCCS Freedom to Work if you make up to $4,948 per month.

To check your AHCCCS Freedom to Work eligibility and how much your premium might be, try DB101’s AHCCCS Freedom to Work Calculator.

I have been getting AHCCCS Freedom to Work. Will my AHCCCS Freedom to Work change?

Back to top
No. You can continue to get the AHCCCS Freedom to Work benefits you currently get as long as your situation doesn’t change. If your income, resources, or family situation change, you may qualify for a different health coverage program.

Does it matter how I qualify for AHCCCS?

Back to top
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 4 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.

Is AHCCCS Freedom to Work coverage free?

Back to top
No. You must pay a premium based on income. The maximum premium under the program is $35 per month. For an estimate of what your AHCCCS Freedom to Work premium would be, use the AHCCCS Freedom to Work Calculator.

What is “countable income?” Is it just how much I make?

Back to top
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 limit for a program, but still qualify.

When AHCCCS Freedom to Work reviews your income to see if you are eligible, only about half of your earned income (money you get from work you do) is counted. For example, if you make $4,000 per month at a job and have no other income, that’s only $1,957.50 in countable monthly income.

Try this tool to get an idea of how much countable income you have:

Your AHCCCS Freedom to Work Countable Income:

Does AHCCCS Freedom to Work cover the same services as standard AHCCCS?

Back to top
Yes. AHCCCS Freedom to Work pays for the same services that standard AHCCCS pays for, including doctor visits, medical equipment, and Personal Assistance Services. For a listing of services covered under AHCCCS Freedom to Work, go to the AHCCCS website.

I have Medicare. Why should I consider getting AHCCCS Freedom to Work as well?

Back to top
If you are eligible for both AHCCCS Freedom to Work and Medicare, it will help you to have both because:
  • If your income is low enough, AHCCCS may pay your Part B premium (and your Part A premium, if you have one). In some cases it may even pay for Medicare deductibles, co-insurance, and copayments.
  • You will automatically qualify for the Part D Low Income Subsidy. The Low Income Subsidy means you may not have to pay a premium for your Part D or any deductibles, including the donut hole. All you would pay for prescription drugs are Part D’s copayments, which range from $1.20 to $6.35.

To learn more, read DB101’s detailed information on Medicare Savings Programs for Parts A and B and the Part D Low Income Subsidy.