Yes, almost everyone is required to have health insurance under the new health care law. If you are not covered, you may have to pay a penalty when you file your 2014 taxes for the months that you did not have coverage.
The penalty in 2014 is calculated one of two ways. You’ll pay whichever of these amounts is higher:
- 1% of your yearly household income above the tax filing threshold.
- $95 per person for the year ($47.50 per child under 18). The maxiumum penalty per family using this method is $285.
If you’re uninsured for just part of the year, 1/12 of the yearly penalty applies to each month you’re uninsured. If you’re uninsured for less than 3 months, you don’t have to make a payment.
How do I avoid a penalty?
If you answer a few questions on this site, you will be able to get to the right place to get coverage and avoid paying a penalty. If you missed the open enrollment deadline, you may still be able to get some type of coverage. Click here to explore your coverage options.
Your answers will help determine if you qualify for Medicaid or if you should buy insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Both will provide comprehensive coverage.
You also will not have to pay a penalty if you already have health coverage. You may already be covered if you get insurance through your job, have insurance directly from an insurance company or are currently a part of a public program including Medicaid, All Kids, Medicare or a Veterans Affairs (VA) health care program.
You also may not have to pay the penalty if you qualify for an exemption or if you are below the tax filing threshold.