Guide for 2022 Medicaid Eligibility for Children in California
The main programs for health insurance for children in low-income families are Medicaid and CHIP. They both provide health insurance, however the coverage provided by CHIP is more limited.
The CHIP program in California is also called Medi-Cal. California combines their CHIP program with Medicaid, so there isn't a separate income limit specifically for CHIP benefits.
How Eligiblity Is Determined
Eligibility for Medicaid and CHIP requires meeting an income limit that is based on your household size. There is no asset test.
The way that household size is counted can be complex if the child's parents do not file taxes together. In general to calculate a child's household size use the tax household size: the tax filer + the spouse + dependents. If the child is not claimed as a dependent by the parents they live with, the method for counting household size has more steps. If this applies to you, try using our Medicaid Eligibility Calculator to get a more accurate estimate.
A household's Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) is used for eligibility decisions for many medical assistance programs. It's similar to Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) which is on your tax return, however some uncommon deductions are added back. For most people it shouldn't be too much different than your total household income, so when reading the charts below use the combined income from all household members from jobs and other sources, except for child support, Supplemental Security Income, and childrens' non-taxable income (like disability payments).
Medicaid Income Limits
1 person household$3,012 / month
2 person household$4,058 / month
3 person household$5,104 / month
4 person household$6,151 / month
5 person household$7,197 / month
6 person household$8,243 / month
7 person household$9,290 / month
Each additional person+$1,046 / month
CHIP Income Limits
California does not offer a CHIP program separately from Medicaid.
Medicaid for Children with Disabilities
Most states offer additional pathways for Medicaid eligibility to children with disabilities. These programs vary by state, but typically have higher income limits than the standard eligibility criteria. For more information, visit KidsWaivers.org.
To apply, visit InsureKidsNow.gov and click on the map for a link to California resources and the application.