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How to apply

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​What information do I need to apply?

You will need to know all income received by members of your household, any private health insurance information for members of your household, and social security numbers for the children who need health insurance.

You should also include social security numbers for the head of household so that we can send you and the federal government the appropriate documentation that your children have minimal essential coverage and will not face a tax penalty. For more information on possible penalties and the 1095-B tax form refer to the IRS website.

​How do I find a provider in my area?

​In many counties, there are several health insurance companies that offer CHIP. This is great news for you because you can select the company that best meets your family's needs. Find a health insurance company that offers CHIP in your area.​

How can I apply?​
Applying for CHIP is easy. You can apply online, by phone, or by mail!

The online application walks you through all the questions you’ll need to answer. Completed applications are submitted immediately and directly. From COMPASS, you can apply for different state services — CHIP, Medicaid, TANF, and more. Use this map to find a CHIP health insurance company in your area. Then, fill out an online application using COMPASS.

Call the CHIP helpline at 1-800-986-KIDS (5437) and select Prompt No. 2, then select Prompt No. 1 for application assistance. A CHIP customer service representative will assist you with ​applying for CHIP insurance over the phone. Completed applications are submitted immediately and directly.

Download a paper application in English OR download a paper application in Spanish. Once we receive your signed application, you should know within four to six weeks whether your children are eligible for CHIP. Incomplete applications will delay processing. After you're notified that your child is eligible for CHIP, benefits will usually start on the first day of the next month. For example, if you receive notice on April 15, benefits would start May 1.

To check the status of your application or if you have questions, contact the CHIP health insurance company with which you applied. 

​Do I have to give my Social Security Number on the application?

A Social Security number is required for each child that you are applying for and your Social Security number helps ensure that your children’s coverage is reported to the IRS to help prevent a tax penalty. For more information about tax penalties visit the IRS website.

I am losing my job and my health insurance. Can I get CHIP for my children?​
Along with the other eligibility criteria, your children cannot be covered by any other insurance when you apply for CHIP. However, if your children are currently covered, but you are losing your health benefits in the near future, you may apply for CHIP. Be sure to note the end date of their insurance coverage on the application and apply prior to the loss of coverage to help prevent any break in insurance coverage.

CHIP will help you ensure your children are covered without a break in insurance coverage, as a break in coverage could cause a tax penalty from the federal government. For more information about tax penalties visit the IRS website.