All state Marketplaces are required to offer Navigator programs to help consumers complete their application for financial help, including help applying for Medicaid or CHIP. Navigators also help people review their plan choices and appeal Marketplace decisions. Navigators are paid by the Marketplace, not by health plans, and they must complete Marketplace training and be free from conflicts of interest.
However, in HealthCare.gov states this year, the federal government substantially reduced Navigator funding so it might be harder to find help from a Navigator, depending on where you live. The federal government did not fund any Navigator programs in South Carolina or Utah for 2020-2021. In some other HealthCare.gov states, including Texas, Ohio, Illinois, Kansas, and Michigan, the federal government will not offer Navigator services in many of the counties.
You may be able to find in-person help from other sources. In addition to Navigators, other Marketplace-certified, volunteer assister programs are run by community health centers, hospitals, and other non-profit organizations. These certified assister programs also complete Marketplace training but do not receive funding from the Marketplace.
Finally, some consumers work with private insurance brokers to apply for private health insurance plans through the Marketplace. Brokers also must complete Marketplace training. They are paid commissions by health insurance companies for each policy they sell.
You can find a directory of certified Navigators, assisters, and brokers on your state Marketplace website. In HealthCare.gov states, the Find Local Help tool is here.