Tennessee Medicaid Income Limits – 2021

The Medicaid Income Limit is the most important criteria for deciding whether you qualify for Medicaid in your state. In this post, we are going to explain in detail the Tennessee Medicaid Income Limits for 2021. The Medicaid program in Tennessee is called TennCare.

Based on this information, you will be able to determine whether your income qualifies you for Tennessee Medicaid or not.

However, before we get into details about the income limit, we will first explain the Medicaid program in Tennessee and how it works.

Next, we will discuss who is eligible for Medicaid, including how eligibility works for various categories, including Children, Pregnant Women, and Adults.

Finally, we will explain how to check if your income qualifies for Medicaid in Tennessee and how to apply.
To learn more, please keep reading this post below.
"Tennessee Medicaid Income Limits"

What is Medicaid?

Medicaid is a federal and state health insurance program for people with a low income.

It provides free or low-cost health coverage to millions of Americans, including families and children, pregnant women, the elderly, and people with disabilities.

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) offers health coverage to children in families with incomes too high to qualify for Medicaid, but who can’t afford private coverage.

How Many People are on Medicaid?

According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, as of November 2020, here are the number of people enrolled in Medicaid and Chip in the entire United States:

  • 78,521,263 individuals were enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP
  • 72,204,587 individuals were enrolled in Medicaid
  • 6,695,834 individuals were enrolled in CHIP

Tennessee Medicaid

The Tennessee Medicaid program provides medical coverage to low-income individuals and families.

As of 2020, the program, along with the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) covered 1.6 million people.

This includes 876,000 children as shown by the image below.

"Number of people on Medicaid in Tennessee"

Medicaid services in Tennessee are run by the Department of Finance and Administration – Division of TennCare.

Who Can Get Medicaid in Tennessee?

You should apply for Medicaid if your income is low and you match one of the descriptions below:

  • You think you are pregnant
  • The parent or caretaker of a child and/or teenager under the age of 19.
  • You are a child or teenager age 18 or under.
  • An adult age 65 or older.
  • You are legally blind.
  • Living with a disability or disabled.
  • You are in need of nursing home care.

Tennessee Medicaid Income Limit

The Tennessee Medicaid Income Limit is calculated as a percentage of the Federal Poverty Line.

To qualify, you must meet the Tennessee Medicaid Income limits listed below.

Here is the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) for 2021.

2021 Federal Poverty Levels for the 48 Contiguous States & D.C.
Household Size Poverty Guideline for 48 states & DC Alaska Hawaii
1 $12,880 $16,090 $14,820
2 $17,420 $21,770 $20,040
3 $21,960 $27,450 $25,260
4 $26,500 $33,130 $30,480
5 $31,040 $38,810 $35,700
6 $35,580 $44,490 $40,920
7 $40,120 $50,170 $46,140
8 $44,660 $55,850 $51,360
Over 8 people add $4,540 for each additional person $5,680 $5,220

Additionally, to be eligible for Medicaid, you cannot make more than the income guidelines outlined below:

  • Children up to age 1 with family income up to 195 percent of FPL
  • Any child age 1-5 with a family income up to 142 percent of FPL
  • Children ages 6- 18 with family income up to 133 percent of FPL
  • CHIP for children with family income up to 250 percent of FPL
  • Pregnant women with family income up to 195 percent of FPL
  • Parents of minor children with family income up to 96 percent of FPL
  • Individuals who are elderly, blind, and disabled with family income up to 74% of the FPL

Tennessee Medicaid Income Limit Charts

The Tennessee Medicaid eligibility income limit charts are divided by groups.

For example, the first chart is focused on income limits for children who qualify for Medicaid.

Similarly, the second chart below focuses on the Medicaid income limits for adults in Tennessee who qualify for Medicaid.

Tennessee Medicaid Income Limit for Children 

Below is the income limit for children by age category. Find the age category your child falls into and you will see the income limit by household size.

Tennessee Medicaid Income Limit – Children
Children Medicaid Ages 0-1 Children Medicaid Ages 1-5 Children Medicaid Ages 6-18 Children Separate CHIP
% FPL 100% 195% 142% 133% 250%
Household Size
1 $12,880 $25,116 $18,290 $17,130 $32,200
2 $17,420 $33,969 $24,736 $23,169 $43,550
3 $21,960 $42,822 $31,183 $29,207 $54,900
4 $26,500 $51,675 $37,630 $35,245 $66,250
5 $31,040 $60,528 $44,077 $41,283 $77,600
6 $35,580 $69,381 $50,524 $47,321 $88,950
7 $40,120 $78,234 $56,970 $53,360 $100,300
8 $44,660 $87,087 $63,417 $59,398 $111,650

Next is the income limit for adults by category. Find the category you fall into and you will see the income limit by household size.

Tennessee has not expanded Medicaid to include adults without dependents.

Therefore, adults without dependents do not qualify for Medicaid in Tennessee.

For an update on the Medicaid expansion debate and timeline in Tennessee, see our Tennessee Medicaid Expansion update below.

Tennessee Medicaid Income Limit for Adults

Tennessee Medicaid Income Limit – Adults
Pregnant Women Medicaid Adults (Medicaid) Parent/ Caretaker Seniors & People w/ Disabilities (Medicaid) Adults (Medicaid) Expansion to Adults
% FPL 100% 195% 96% 74% NO
Household Size
1 $12,880 $25,116 $12,365 $9,531 N/A
2 $17,420 $33,969 $16,723 $12,891 N/A
3 $21,960 $42,822 $21,082 $16,250 N/A
4 $26,500 $51,675 $25,440 $19,610 N/A
5 $31,040 $60,528 $29,798 $22,970 N/A
6 $35,580 $69,381 $34,157 $26,329 N/A
7 $40,120 $78,234 $38,515 $29,689 N/A
8 $44,660 $87,087 $42,874 $33,048 N/A

How to Read the Tennessee Medicaid Income Limits Charts Above

You cannot have an income higher than the Federal Poverty Level percentage described for your group to be eligible for Medicaid.

Similarly, when you identify the income group that applies to you, the income limit you see refers to the maximum level of income you can earn to qualify for benefits.

For example, if you are pregnant, to qualify for Medicaid, you cannot have an income higher than 195% of the Federal Poverty Level – which for a family of two is $33,969 as shown in the chart above.

How to Apply for Tennessee Medicaid

There are 2 ways you can apply for Medicaid in Tennessee.

Option 1 – Apply online

You can apply online through the TennCare Connect Portal – as shown in the image below.

If you have an account, you can log in or create your TennCare Connect AccountClick here to be taken to the website.

The video below, from TennCare Connect, does a great job of walking you through how to apply for Medicaid online.

We highly encourage you to watch it if you are planning to apply for TN Medicaid online.

Option 2 – Download Application

You can download an application, complete it, and mail it to your county DHS office or submit it in person.

There are two ways to send in your paper application. You only need to choose one:

Mail it to:
TennCare Connect
P.O. Box 305240
Nashville, TN 37202-5240

Or Fax it to: 1-855-315-0669. Be sure to keep the page that says your fax went through.

Additionally, you call 855-259-0701 to apply over the phone.

"How to Apply for Tennessee Medicaid Online"

Tennessee Medicaid Phone Number

Here’s how to contact the Tennessee Medicaid Agency:

TennCare Connect 1-855-259-0701

Call this number for general information regarding TennCare, including:

  • Applying for TennCare
  • Disenrollment & Benefit Changes
  • Reporting a change (such as a new address, or change in jobs)

Also, for TennCare Member Medical Appeals, call 1-800-878-3192.

Tennessee Medicaid Expansion Update

Tennessee has not expanded Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act.

It is estimated that about 381,000 additional people will be covered if the states accept Medicaid expansion.

However, Tennessee has received approval for the nation’s first modified block grant funding model for Medicaid.

While refusing federal funding to expand Tennessee Medicaid enrollment, the state legislature is seeking federal approval for a work requirement.

Tennessee Medicaid Income Limits Summary

We hope this post on Tennessee Medicaid Income Limits was helpful to you.

If you have any questions about Medicaid in the state of Tennessee, you can ask us in the comments section below.

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Be sure to check out our other articles about Medicaid.
Income limits for Florida Medicaid
Virginia Medicaid Chip Income Limits
Washington Apple Health Income Limits
Wisconsin BadgerCare Plus Income Limits