For Consumers

Association Health Plans

What is an Association Health Plan (AHP)? 

AHPs are a type of health insurance that employers and professional trade associations offer to their employees or members. They are regulated by state and federal law and allow qualified small employers to join together to buy coverage similar to large employers:

  • Must be a bona fide association formed for a purpose other than to offer health insurance
  • Can consider someone’s health condition when setting premiums
  • Provides coverage to employers who have at least one employee (other than a spouse)
  • Cannot offer coverage to self-employed people with no employees

What to know when shopping for an Association Health Plan

  • Associations that offer health coverage to their members may have eligibility requirements that could impact your ability to buy their health plan.
  • Any health condition you have may impact your premium. 

Where to buy an Association Health Plan

Contact a licensed insurance company directly or an insurance agent or broker

What you should ask before you buy

  • Is the insurance company licensed to offer health insurance in Washington state?
  • What are the eligibility requirements to join the association or to buy the association health plan?  
  • Is there coverage for essential health benefits and other health services that are covered in regular small group insurance?
  • Will I be charged more based on my age, gender or pre-existing health conditions or my employees’?