The second lowest cost silver plan (SLCSP) is a plan on each state’s Marketplace used to determine cost assistance for ObamaCare. This page also covers how to find the Lowest Cost Bronze Plan in your marketplace, and provides tools to find and calculate second lowest cost silver plans and lowest cost bronze plans.

  • The cost assistance amount you get each year uses the second lowest cost silver plan (SLCSP) as the “baseline” plan for determining cost assistance. So for instance if you qualified to have your tax credits capped at 9.5% of your household income, you would receive the exact amount of credits for the SLCSP, less for higher-cost plans, and more for lower-cost plans. Use form 8962 (Premium Tax Credit Form 8962 and Instructions).
  • The affordability exemption uses the lowest cost bronze plan to determine if the cheapest marketplace plan was affordable. Use form 8965 (Health Coverage Exemptions and Instructions).
  • The average price of bronze plans is used to determine the max penalty anyone would have to pay for not having coverage. Calculate the fee with the worksheet found in the instructions of 8965.

NOTE: If your 1095-A is wrong, or you didn’t get a 1095, you can use the SLCSP tax tool below to calculate information for your 1095 yourself.

Second Lowest Cost Tax Tools

In order to complete Form 8965 or Form 8962 when you file your 2014 federal tax return, you may be asked for information about Marketplace health plans that were available to you for 2014.

You may need to know the cost of premiums for the second lowest cost Silver plan (SLCSP) or the lowest cost Bronze plan.

The two tax tools from HealthCare.Gov found below can help you look up the information you need.

Second Lowest Cost Silver Plan Tax Tool

To determine your final premium tax credit for 2014, you need to know the premium for the second lowest cost Silver plan (SLCSP) that was available to you for 2014. You’ll enter this information on Form 8962—Premium Tax Credit.

Most people will find this information on the Form 1095-A they get from the Marketplace. Some will need to use this tool.

See if you need to use this tool to find your second lowest cost Silver premium: You need to use this tool if the Form 1095-A you get from the Marketplace doesn’t include information about your second lowest cost Silver plan (SLCSP), or if the information is outdated. This could happen if:

  • You had a change to your household in 2014 that you didn’t report to the Marketplace — like having a baby, moving to a new home, or a family member getting job-based coverage
  • You didn’t apply for financial assistance when you filled out your 2014 Marketplace application, and want to find out now if you qualify
  • You didn’t take advance payments of the premium tax credit to lower the amount you paid for monthly premiums in 2014
SLCSP Tax Tool from HealthCare.Gov: 

Lowest Cost Bronze Plan Tax Tool

To claim the exemption because 2014 Marketplace coverage was considered unaffordable for you, you’ll need to know the premium for the lowest cost Bronze plan available to you in 2014. To do this you’ll use the lowest cost bronze plan tax tool below.

You’ll use this information to complete Form 8965—Health Coverage Exemptions.

Lowest Cost Bronze Plan Tax Tool From HealthCare.Gov: 
  • You don’t need to use this tool if you already have an Exemption Certificate Number (ECN) for this exemption. Just enter your ECN on Part 1 of Form 8965.
  • To claim this exemption you’ll also need to know how much financial assistance you were eligible for by looking up the premium for the second lowest cost Silver plan (SLCSP) available to you for 2014.

Second Lowest Cost Sliver Plan and 8962

To determine your final premium tax credit for 2014, you need to know the premium for the second lowest cost Silver plan (SLCSP) that was available to you for 2014. You’ll enter this information on Form 8962—Premium Tax Credit.

Second Lowest Cost Sliver Plan and 1095

You need to use this tool if the Form 1095-A you get from the Marketplace doesn’t include information about your second lowest cost Silver plan (SLCSP), or if the information is outdated. This could happen if:

  • You had a change to your household in 2014 that you didn’t report to the Marketplace — like having a baby, moving to a new home, or a family member getting job-based coverage
  • You didn’t apply for financial assistance when you filled out your 2014 Marketplace application, and want to find out now if you qualify
  • You didn’t take advance payments of the premium tax credit to lower the amount you paid for monthly premiums in 2014

Note: In some cases, the information on your Form 1095-A doesn’t include any information about the second lowest cost Silver plan (SLCSP), or the information isn’t updated based on your latest 2014 circumstances. If so, you may need to use a tool to get information about your second lowest cost Silver plan for 2014. Learn more about using the SLCSP tool.

Lowest Cost Bronze Plan and 8965

You may need to use both the second lowest cost silver plan tool and the lowest cost bronze plan tool if you’re claiming a health coverage exemption because 2014 Marketplace coverage was considered unaffordable for you.