2016 vs. 2017 Tax Penalty Amounts and Exemptions For Not Having Health Insurance Under ObamaCare

506 comments

ObamaCare or the Affordable Care Act, is the law of the land now which means that all Americans with an income above a certain threshold have to purchase or have health insurance. The provision referred to as the individual mandate is what legally required most US citizens and legal residents to obtain private, employer sponsored or public health insurance (through state run exchanges). Based on the most recent data available it is estimated that the majority of the US population gets health insurance through their employers while 50 million people are uninsured. The remaining consumers either buy their own private insurance or are covered by federal/state government programs, such as Medicaid and Medicare.


Here is a summary table of the standard penalties for not having health insurance. Details on how the penalty is applied and individual exemption mandates are provided in subsequent sections.

Expecting a health care penalty? You may qualify to have it waived. Find out now

YearPenalty (Single)Penalty (Family)Maximum Penalty
2017$695 or 2.5% of income$2,085 or 2.5% of income$13,100
2016$695 or 2.5% of income$2,085 or 2.5% of income$13,000
2015$325 or 2% of income$975 or 2% of income$12,500
2014$95 or 1% of income$285 or 1% of income$9,800

See this article for details on Republicans/Trump’s American Health Care Act (ACHA) to repeal individual mandate penalties and provide tax credits to offset the cost of providing insurance.

Individuals: For the 2014 tax year (reported/filed in 2015), individuals who did not have insurance would owed $95, or 1 percent of income, whichever is greater. For the 2015 tax year it rose to the greater of $325 or 2 percent of income. But the penalty for 2016 rose yet again, reaching $695, or 2.5 percent of income, whichever is greater. From 2017, the minimum tax penalty per person will rise each year with inflation. Estimates are provided on the table above and it is likely 2017 penalties and maximums will remain the same as 2016 given the low inflation environment. And for children 18 and under, the minimum per-person tax is half of that for adults ($47.50).  The tax penalty is pro-rated, so that a person who is not covered for only a single month would pay 1/12th of the tax that would be due for the full year.

While the focus is on the $95 (single adult) penalty, the actual penalty may be much more for higher income people because the percentage component of the penalty comes into play. For example, a single person whose MAGI is $35,000 and elects not to have health insurance, may be liable for a penalty of $249 ($35,000 – $10,150 = $24,850 x 1% = $249).

Families: For families the 2014 health insurance non-compliance penalty was capped at $285 per family, or 1% of income, whichever is greater. In 2015 it rose to the greater of $975 or 2 percent of income. For 2016, the penalty jumped sharply to $2,085 per family, or 2.5% of income, whichever is greater. From 2017, the penalty/tax will rise in line with inflation. The minimum amount per family is capped at triple the per-person tax, no matter how many individuals are in the taxpayer’s household. So, for example, a couple with one child over 18 (or two children age 18 or under), and no coverage, would pay a minimum of $285 in 2014, $975 in 2015 and $2,085 in 2016. And that would be the minimum no matter how many uninsured dependents a taxpayer has.

The maximum penalty (under the percentage of income criteria) is capped at the national average price of a bronze plan sold through the health insurance marketplace. For 2014 the maximum was $9,800, $12,500 in 2015 and then $13,000 in 2016. The 2017 maximum penalty is expected to stay the same as 2016 or rise marginally in line with inflation.

Individuals or families who fall below income-tax filing thresholds would not owe anything or get subsides or credits to offset health insurance costs (see section below on Health care premium tax credit). People who are unemployed or cannot find a policy that costs less than 8% of their modified adjusted gross income would also be exempt from penalties under the individual mandate. On the other hand, to offset the cost of providing insurance to low income households, individuals making more than $200,000 a year and couples earning above $250,000 will get additional health care taxes deducted as payroll taxes. These people are also hit with a 3.8 percent tax on investment income.

Employers: For employers with 50 or more workers could face federal fines for not providing insurance coverage. Several of the other changes would take effect much sooner. For the current and future impacts of health insurance on employers see this article.

Do I still have to pay the no coverage (individual mandate) penalty with Trump/GOP bill to repeal Obamacare?

President Donald Trump along with Congressional Republicans have started the process to repeal Obamacare in 2017 via the American Health Care Act (ACHA). The challenge they are current facing is that their still isn’t broad consensus for this Obamacare replacement plan and implementing a full replacement will take months, if not years. Without an effective replacement plan an ACA repeal could leave millions without access to health insurance and create significant financial turmoil within the American healthcare system. From a health care penalty perspective, there is the strong expectation that the individual mandate will be removed from 2018 if the ACHA bill is passed (changes may be retroactive). This means that those without health insurance in 2017 may only be subject to a partial or no penalty when filing taxes in 2018.


Note however that President Trump has signed an earlier Executive order that directed federal agencies to to waive or exempt health law-related provisions that would impose costs or penalties on individuals, to the extent permitted by law. But this “hardship clause” does not mean that taxpayers should NOT pay the penalty or delay filing ahead of any formal repeal law.

So for 2016 taxes currently being filed in 2017, all penalties will apply as shown in the above table. I’ll continue to post updates on this topic and encourage you to follow or share this article via Facebook or Twitter

How Individual Health Care Coverage Will be Monitored

Employers have had to state the value of the health care benefits provided to each employee on their W-2 at the end of each year. Insurers (including employers who self-insure) that provide minimum essential coverage to any individual during a calendar year will also have to report certain health insurance coverage information to both the covered individual and the IRS. Thus, the IRS will ultimately be responsible for reporting an individuals and business’ non-compliance with purchasing health insurance.

Obamacare/Affordable Care Act Tax Forms

A number of tax payers will have more complicated tax returns this year with the need to account for health insurance coverage as part of the individual mandate of the new Affordable health care laws.

Taxpayers who get their health insurance through their employer or government sponsored programs like Medicare or Medicaid, which will be the majority, will be able to prove their compliance via their tax filing by check a box on their normal tax (1040 series) return validating they had insurance. But those who bought insurance on the health insurance exchanges with the help of federal subsidies (see below for income qualification levels) will receive a form 1095-A detailed their coverage and have to reconcile their payments with their income level.  HealthCare.gov, the federal exchange that serves 37 states, started to mail out 1095-A forms to customers said all forms should be mailed out by the end of January. This end of month deadline is also the same for state-run exchanges

Those who failed to report raises or bonuses to their respective health exchanges may have to pay back some amount of subsidy for purchasing health insurance via these exchanges. This may require them to complete additional forms (Form 8965 or 8962) to claim exemptions and determine the allowed premium tax credit.

Checking if you have the minimum essential coverage to meet the individual mandate

Minimum Essential Coverage under ObamacareThe IRS has provided details on what constitutes coverage under the new health care laws. If you meet this coverage you won’t face penalties.

There are also certain allowed exemptions from the individual mandate that include items like

  • Being uninsured for less than 3 months of the year
  • The lowest-priced coverage available to you would cost more than 8% of your household income
  • You don’t have to file a tax return because your income is too low
  • You’re a member of a recognized religious sect with religious objections to insurance, including Social Security and Medicare
  • You’re incarcerated (either detained or jailed), and not being held pending disposition of charges
  • You’re not lawfully present in the U.S. (illegal immigrants)
  • You qualify for a hardship exemption (homeless, evicted in the past 6 months, received a shut-off notice from a utility company etc)

But you will need to show evidence for these in your tax return (Form 8965) with your tax return.  when claiming the exemption and the IRS will be checking these quite thoroughly.

US citizens or residents who reside overseas and meet the IRS foreign residency criteria (generally 330 full days outside of the U.S. during a 12-month period) can also claim exemption from the individual mandate penalty via Form 8965.  If living overseas for a partial period of time that does not qualify you as a foreign resident for tax purposes coverage provided by your local employer (under an expatriate health plan) can count as qualified health coverage that precludes them from the penalty. One exemption that may be particularly relevant to U.S. citizens living abroad for a small part of a year is the exemption for a short coverage gap. This exemption provides that no shared responsibility payment will be due for a once-per-year gap in coverage that lasts less than three months.

ObamaCare Premium Tax Credit Subsidy and Federal Poverty Levels (FPL)

Lower income Americans that purchase health insurance under the Affordable Care Act may also be eligible for a premium tax credit or subsidy. This is paid in the form of a tax credit (in advance or when filing your tax return) and is based on household size and income relative to the federal poverty levels (FPL). To qualify for the premium tax credit the household modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) has to be between 100% and 400% of the FPL. This is shown in the table below for different household sizes. The actual amount of the tax credit will vary based income and household size, but can only be claimed if you purchase health insurance through a healthcare marketplace or exchange.

# Persons in Household2015 - 100% FPL income threshold2015 - 400% FPL income threshold2016 - 100% FPL income threshold2016 - 400% FPL income threshold
1$11,770$47,080$11,880$47,520
2$15,930$63,720$16,020$64,080
3$20,090$80,360$20,160$80,640
4$24,250$97,000$24,300$97,200
5$28,410$113,640$28,440$113,760
6$32,570$130,280$32,580$130,320
7$36,730$146,920$36,730$146,920
840,890$163,56040,890$163,560
9+add $4,160 for each additional person.add $16,640 for each additional person.add $4,160 for each additional personadd $16,640 for each additional person

Note: FPLs are higher in Alaska and Hawaii than in the mainland 48 states. The above limits increase with inflation every year. Eligibility for the subsidy/tax credit is based on income limits for the prior year (e.g your 2017 subsidy is based on your 2016 income levels).

{ 490 comments… read them below or add one }

Richard May 4

FINALLY, the Sky was back to Freedom.
No more penalty without healthcare.
I love Trump so so much.
^^ enjoy your freedom life.
It’s a beautiful day.

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deez April 25

me and wife filled jointly, my income was 20k. her was $94k.
she has insurance through her company and I don’t. I had to pay $2,300 penalty because our income was jointed. Does anyone know if this is right. I don’t get how I have to pay over $2k penalty and my income was $20k

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Greg May 15

It depends on your filing status, since you filed jointly, your wife’s income is grouped with yours. If you filed separately, then you might have been able to avoid the penalty, but it depends on other factors as well. So you are paying the penalty since your household income was high and you had no insurance.

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Gloria Gibbons April 22

Yes every one pays a fine. IRS got me for $900.00 for 2016 taxes, because of the Healthcare Market place. They do not know what they are doing. Plus President Trump has signed an order for them not to be so strict. But guess what that isn’t phasing the IRS none. Due to what the Healthcare Market place says (their 1095A form) the IRS is collecting every penny that can get out of us working people. It’s all a scam; the insurance isnt worth a dam, that O shitcare insurance should be shoved up that muslim ex want to be thing those pansy ass democrats called a president. And take those sorry stupid no good for nothing insurance companies and ram up behind the liberal democrats so Obama will be full of it a little longer. All the working people are doing is paying for those lazy no good for nothing non working conformists. No help for the backbone working people of supposedly a free country.

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Bill April 11

Government forcing Americans to make insurance companies profitable. Whether or not I have insurance for my body is none of the government’s business. Those who lobby for insurance companies most certainly had this law shoved down our throats. The government does not own us, and certainly neither do insurance companies. The basic fundamentals of freedom and liberty has been gutted due to the ACA. What is next ? The government forcing us to buy a certain model car ? I am surprised that Americans have complied to this corrupt law. We are being extorted under the “law” simply for being alive. Your flesh , under this law , is claimed by the government and insurance companies. This is very disturbing.

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Greg May 15

Do you understand the point of what Obama was trying to do? He was trying to have every person to be covered by health insurance to avoid people being rejected by health facilities for not having insurance and to avoid people having high health bills. First of all, healthcare should be free to everyone, no one should have to pay to be healthy. But America is run on greed. My girlfriend had a month lapse in health insurance for one month when she switched employers, and unfortunately had a health issue during that month. Her bill was over 40k when it was all said and done. She can’t afford a bill like that, she would be paying for almost her entire life to pay it off. With health insurance, these bills wouldn’t exist. Your argument can be said for car insurance, every person needs car insurance to drive, but why are you not complaining about that? Instead of being mad at Obama, maybe you should take your frustrations out with the healthcare system that over prices every aspect.

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Kandy March 13

My mom and dad filed their taxes last week and were penalized for insurance. They have to pay $1750 even though they both have insurance. My dad is on medicare and my mom has obamacare. She pays $284 a month since they couldn’t afford a higher plan and pays more for dr visits and has a higher deductible. How can she be penalized if she had insurance all of 2016? Is this right? I told them not to pay this until we can have this checked out. Can someone please let me know if this is right. They accountant told them that they would not have to pay anything had it not been for her obamacare insurance. We lost our home in the flood and they were able to claim all of that but still got hit owing a lot because of this stupid obamacare. I think she should send her bill to Mr Obama and say here you pay this.

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Sherry Stout April 13

Everything depends on their filing situation, If they had the required minimum coverage all year, did they qualify for an exemption for relief from a disaster. I am a Tax associate for H&R Block in Indiana. We do perform a free second look if your parents are concerned their taxes was not completed accurately. They can call 317-530-5216 we also do approve online for out of state or out of town clients.

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Toni March 7

I use HR Block to do my taxes every year. This year there is a section where you can choose not to disclose your coverage status. I want to do that, but I have 1095’s that I presume have been sent to the IRS. Will they flag my return?

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Patricia March 27

Yes if you received the tax credit for your premiums, my husband e-filed through H&R Block without our’s and we received a letter from the IRS requesting the 1095a’s and form 8962. I suggest getting the form ready if you received the tax credit.

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Emily April 17

I too have a 1095c showing I had health insurance half the year, but I want to choose prefer not to say on my taxes. Should I be worried about a fine for not telling them?

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Greg May 15

It is never advisable to knowingly put false information on your return. With that being said, you normally don’t need to submit detailed information for 1095-B or 1095-C. The IRS was information for 1095-A for the reason of the premium tax credit they were receiving.

Lamont Cranston March 7

In response to Nope, where do you live that you need to spend $24,000 of a $41,000 income on a mortgage? Can you move and reduce that?
You need to do some serious belt tightening. I figured 28.5 hours times 32 weeks that you work is 912 hours, I can’t feel to sorry for you,
I worked over 2500 hours and only earned about $40,000 luckily my wife earned about the same.
You are living way beyond your means, fix that and start saving money.
Read some MrMoneyMustache to learn how to tighten your belt and see if you can work in the summer to earn more than your unemployment pays.

Re; Obamacare, when It started in 2012 I was paying $5,250 for a family of four, now I’m paying $10,500. A comparable Bronze Obamacare policy
is $16,600. So much for saving me $2,500 a year.

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David Allen March 2

Where are all the people who are getting such great benefits from Obama Care? Apparently not on this website. It’s a scam to get low-income people to pay for the free plans given to no-income people.

Hillary made it sound like tens of millions of people would die if it were repealed.

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Nope March 2

There is no way I can afford health insurance… even at the lowest Bronze plan level. I make roughly 41K a year so that is the determining factor. What they don’t take into consideration is… my monthly expenses are often more than what I make. My mortgage is $2000 a month. Utilities are $300. Insurance for car $150. Then there’s phone, internet and gas and food and… well, you know, living expenses. But here’s the deal. I teach at the college level however I am not allowed to have more than 28.5 hours a week because otherwise they’d have to insure me. So I’m affected in that way, firstly, and secondly I’m not paid for 4 months during the summer break at which time I collect unemployment (which is roughly $1600 a month) – so I don’t even make my mortgage at that time. And again for 4 weeks in December/January. Even if health insurance were as little as $150 a month, I don’t make enough to afford it 12 months a year.

So… last year’s $600 fee is something I still owe. I still don’t have the money to pay it. But I just found something out. THERE ARE NO LEGAL REPERCUSSIONS IF I DON’T PAY IT OR ANY FUTURE PENALTIES!!! Sure, they could take it out of my federal refund if they choose to, but because I claim the most deductions I can possibly claim on my W2, I don’t receive a refund – I usually owe. There is nothing on the books that can force the IRS to make someone pay the penalty – but you have to look around a little to discover this.

Sure, it’d be great to have health insurance. But I haven’t had it in over 25 years because I can’t afford insurance and I haven’t seen a doctor in that amount of time or longer because I can’t afford an office visit (the average for an uninsured individual is $150). I’m what they call the working poor, I guess, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay a penalty because I can’t afford insurance. Hell, I can’t afford the penalty! LOL

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Greg May 15

I’m not sure where you found out this information, but if you owe the IRS money, they might not come for it at first, but they will come for it eventually. They will send you a letter and add interest and more penalties, including liens and levies. If you owe them anything, it’s best to pay it, even if you need to go on an installment plan. I work in an accounting office, and I have seen some clients that are in terrible situations for not paying their taxes.

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Shanna February 27

My husband has medicare and I have no insurance. I work part time & we can’t afford $800 a month for me to have insurance. Should our penalty be the full amount? What if we file our taxes separately?

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Nope March 2

If you don’t pay the fee there is nothing that the IRS can do to you… it is not punishable. They can, if they choose – but don’t necessarily always – deduct it from your refund (if you have one coming to you) but the laws are set up so they cannot collect that fee from you if you don’t voluntarily pay it.

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Kimberly February 25

The IRS sent me a letter stating that I owe the $695 penalty for not having health insurance; however, I DO have health insurance (Medicaid) and was covered since 2015. Why would they tell me I am being penalized when I’ve had insurance this entire time? All of 2016 was covered by my Medicaid, and I even used my insurance at the doctor’s office. This makes no sense. Now, after doing my taxes, I feel they are withholding my tax return.

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Toni March 7

Did you get a 1095 B form from Medicaid? That’s proof of coverage and the IRS gets a copy too. Sort of like W2 forms.

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corrina February 23

My medical has been pending since june 2016 will i be penalized?

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john February 20

This is indeed a socialism government under the Obama to force citizens to pay the government and to take over a private industry. Why force poor people to pay money that they do not have. I think that any government should not be able to tell nor force anyone to go to a certain church, marry a certain person or culture or for someone to go to a certain health care provider, doctor and to have any insurance. This is a form of communism,. To be penalized for being poor is not only unconstitutional but violates the fabric of society in America. All of this money should be paid back to all of the Americans and Green Card Holders ( Legal Immigrants )… I am a american citizen born here in 1954. Where is the compassion for the old, poor, widows and children. I do not think that Mr Obama has read the Bible nor understands about the true meaning of Godly Love. This country was built on christian values and principles. Why deny the rights of the people. I am poor, a senior citizen and i have a bone marrow disease. I can not afford health insurance. I was told 4 years ago that i can die at anytime to have a stroke and i have visited for many months on the cancer ward floor of the hospital. The Oncologist want me to take the radiation pills when the other did not work. I prefer to die like a man with some honor and dignity and not die like a animal. To be poor or a victim of abuse to pay money i do not have does not bother or hurt me as much as if i could not have the freedom and choice to be close to God. No one one will take that away from me. Yes you can take money i do not have when i am in pain and sick and poor . However no one will ever be able to take away my right to be with God and for me to worship God.

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Anna23@natureday.com February 19

02-19-2017
I used to pay 600 a month for healthcare. I am a single mom of three.
Today I get an email from group health that said I now have to pay 1,300 a month. WHAT??? wtf?
It more then doubled? Does that mean the health insurance companies are scared people will drop them?
I don’t want to pay insurance at all, much less more now!

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carl ruggs February 26

I’msure you would rather pay no health insurance so when you or your kids need care, I,the person with insurance, will pay for your care. And I’m sure you will go to the hospital ER, the most expensive place to get care. This is what has been going on for decades and still goes on today. Our only real hope is for a single payer health care system that we all pay for thru taxes. Should have been done years ago but I have no doubt but that is what we will eventually end up with. Let the USA join the rest of the modern world and see health care as a basic human right

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Yinn March 9

Carl,

did you read the first sentence of Anna23 post? she had an insurance for $600 until Obamacare made her insurance rate went up to $1300. so, why r u blaming it on her?

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Greg May 15

Did YOU read Anna’s post? Not one place did she ever say Obamacare. In fact, in 2017 my health insurance rate went down.

Cyndi Salmon February 18

We have health insurance through our employers. However, when a country mandates it’s citizens have this type of insurance it starts becoming a socialistic union. I’m totally against forcing health insurance on the citizens of our country. I’m hoping President Trump and the Republicans will change the penalty for not having insurance.

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Thomas Becker February 11

I know I’m going to get “hit” with paying the $695 penalty. Do I simply file my 1040 with Schedule A as I normally would and have the IRS respond with a bill for that penalty amount, or, is there a place/way on the 1040 form to note that I couldn’t afford coverage for 2016?

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Christine March 12

If the IRS/Obamacare rules say you can afford the coverage, depending what your income is, then you will have to pay the fine. If you meet the low income threshhold to be exempt from having to buy the crap coverage, then you wouldn’t have to pay the fine.

Our, my husband and I, income came to 62K, 9K of that is unemployment…of course we don’t get to actually spend all the gross pay since tons of taxes are deducted, but nobody cares about that, they go by your gross income…so our fine comes to $1042 for not having coverage for 9 straight months last year. Our refund would only be $25 big bucks so we now OWE $1017 because of the O’Shitcare fines. I wish Trump had gotten rid of the fines for 2016. I don’t have $1017 laying around, so it will be a payment plan, yay. No idea if we don’t declare that we didn’t have coverage, that that will change the fact that we owe the fine. Some say the IRS won’t come after you for the fine but no idea if that is true since employers report to the IRS whether you had coverage or not..for each month of the year.

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Greg May 15

Actually Christine, they take your Adjusted Gross Income, not your Gross income, and yes, there is a difference.

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Renee Storkson February 1

In 2016, my husband made $30,000.00 (after they reduced his salary after working there 30 years) I, his wife, was unemployed all of 2016. The coverage offered from his work was 900 to 1,000 per month. Everything in the marketplace for us was around 1,000 a month. We only make $30,000 a year! I thought if it was more than 8% you wouldn’t have to pay fine.

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Catherine February 1

I did my taxes through TurboTax and that should be correct. You have the option to state that healthcare was unaffordable.

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Shannon January 29

My son only worked for a few months so he didn’t even make like 3,000 for the year. He doesn’t work now but will he have to pay a penalty

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Ana March 4

You don’t have to file if you make $3000 a year. Ask around, I believe you only have to file if you make over $6000 per year.

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carrie s January 28

I think the fine is against our amendment rights for excessive fines i cant afford health insurance i cant even afford to by food for my family most weeks

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Jessie February 2

I agree, it’s bull crap because all Obama did was ruin this world worse than it was already ruined.. Not everyone can afford health insurance! I started my job at UPS a year ago so my insurance didn’t even kick in until Dec of 2016 so I had insurance for 1 month out the year. If we can’t afford health insurance than what makes them think we can afford a fine that is an extreme amount. Let’s just take the little bit of money that people do get, but peeps that actually have money get help!

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Kyosti Pajari January 26

After losing my job with SoCalGas Co (and 50+% of my ability to earn a living) because an illness caused by my job, I ended in a situationwhere I could not afford a place to live or health care in Southern California,I had to seek refuge in my native Finland. There I was entitled to medical care. My status as a permanent resident alien (green card since 1975) limited my stay there to less than year at a time.
Now I am charged penalty for not having health insurance.

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Ray S January 25

I also cannot afford the 700.00 plus a month to have horrible coverage! It is insane to penalize for that. We all knew this would be a disaster. Comrade Obama Is/was nothing but a crook!

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Judy L January 25

Hello to all. I have worked all my life and in order to ‘buy’ ObamaCare, it would have cost me 702.00 a month for this and I could not afford it. Now in 2017 I have had ins. since 9-01-16. Does this mean I have to pay a penalty on something that I could not afford to buy in the first place? Is this really fair? Do you think the President will change the tax laws and would it do me any good to wait awhile because I can not afford to pay 600.00 for the penalty.

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Richard Praser January 24

You are definitely RIGHT. I just paid for insurance named Molina. It is one of health insurance from Obama-Scare ( with me, it never and ever care peoples). When I went to Dr (first location), he said He can not accept this insurance. Then I need to call them and they changed. After I did fully check up, and when I bought that Molina, it say free o

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tho January 24

I apply the Marketplace Health insurance for my spouse but they didn’t offer coz my employer offer for that. but if i took insurance from employer ( as a state employee ) that charge me 600/ month. So, If i don’t take any for wife who will be panelize . What the hell policy. Note/ she never meet doctor coz good health

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Marilyn buduan January 22

That’s why I don’t have no health insurance because I can’t afford it. Government penalize us that ridiculous..people who don’t work can get a government help but people who work hard cannot get help what a twisted policy…having a job could be a prequalifications to get approved a government health insurance.. no job no help

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Teresa wood January 24

That doesn’t make any sense for you to say no job, no help. There are also people that are sickly that can’t work and need aid or are on disability. Do you really think those people shouldn’t get the help they need? They shouldn’t all be put into the same category as a lazy able bodied person that just doesn’t want to work. I am pretty sure those people won’t qualify for any help anyway unless they can prove there is some reason they can’t work. In the first place, a penalty for no health ins. is the most rediculous thing the American people should ever be subjected to. Just another way for our government to line their pockets and steal from us. Obama care is a joke within it’s self!

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Jessie February 2

YEa I agree, these women go n have all these kids knowing they don’t have a job or any money to afford a bunch of kids but they get more help then anyone. The peeps that actually work for a living, not wanting to b on welfare or so can’t get any kind of help.. SMH, don’t make no sense cause peeps that don’t wanna work or do anything but live on welfare should b penalized!

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Dpartridge January 22

Any chance trump might drop the penalty for 2017 taxes? Or at least refund it to us in July 2017?

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Andy (Author) January 23

Always a chance. In his proposed tax changes for 2017, http://www.savingtoinvest.com/trump-tax-plan-cuts-and-changes-in-2017-2018-and-beyond/ , there is an aim to do this. But will require House Republican support to repeal Obamacare and permanently drop the individual mandate penalty.

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MIkey owens January 22

Being fined for not having medical insurance could be understandable if my fine was vested in some sort of medical coverage for me but it’s not. So I don’t no how this is anything less than extortion. I work my ass off just to get fined so all the bums can have health insurance,do you see what’s wrong with this picture.

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Geoff Peterson January 21

My girlfriend did not have insurance for exactly 3 months. Will she have to pay a penalty?

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Peceli Tuinakauvadra January 19

Ok,I’m a US citizen my wife just got her Greencard in November of 2016. She’s got denied Medicaid because she didn’t have a social security number that year, couldn’t put her on my insurance plan because she didn’t have a ssn. We had to wait a whole year(2015-2016)
after I paid all the fees for her Greencard. We went to file our taxes,come to find out we’re being penalized for her not having health insurance When she didn’t even qualify for health insurance, because she didn’t have a social security number. How is this possible???.. First they turn her down because she’s illegal, as soon as she gets her green card. They tell us we have to pay a penalty for not having health insurance in 2016.

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Perry February 19

I would think since she was not a legal citizen until November, when she got her greencard that would qualify as a life change and you should have been able to get insurance for her then. Since the time she became legal, if she did not have insurance they can charge a prorated penalty if you did not get her insurance for the rest of the year, but I also think there is a 3 month grace period, so in effect, you should be able to file an exemption and not have to pay the penalty. I would check with a tax expert…

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Christina V Diaz January 11

2016 we’ve paid or insurance. 2017 my husband’s income went down and we applied for Medicaid. He has a restricted medicaid and i have a 400 mthly deductible. Is this qualified as having insurance for next year’s taxes without being penalized?

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Angie February 4

Yes, it is a qualification, you are exempt. My son is on disability Medicaid and he is also exempt.

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David January 6

I believe if you are a veteran (I.e. You have access to VA if you need it) you are “covered” as far as tax filing, correct?

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Andy (Author) January 6

Yes…see graphic in post. If you are covered by VA health programs you are exempt from penalty.

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natty January 28

my son is a veteran. due to a job change & not being offered insurance on his hire date he went without insurance for three months (had to wait for his first 90 days to be up at his new job). he was fined $800 when he filed his 2015 taxes last spring. when you only make $10/hr and the only household income, there should NOT be such fines!

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angie February 4

He should have VA benefits. If he has that he is exempt.

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Lambert December 28

My son and I have insurance but my husband did not qualify through the state so he hasnt had any since May, how much would he be penalized?

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Anitaka December 21

Someone please inform me when the IRS releases the updated tax penalty amount for filing in 2017.

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Andy (Author) December 22

Per health care.gov site, the 2017 fees are the same as 2016. The fee is calculated 2 different ways – as a percentage of your household income, and per person. You’ll pay whichever is higher. See the table in the post for details.

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natty January 28

that’s blatant extortion! completely unethical. praying president trump will stop these fines/taxes.

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Diane December 15

I read somewhere that if you only had insurance for 3 months out of the whole year that you would not owe any penalty. Is that true?

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Anitaka December 21

I was under the impression that if you are without insurance for more than three consecutive months then you have to pay a penalty.

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Andy (Author) December 22

Not true. The penalty is proportionate to the number of months you are not covered. The 3 month short coverage gap exemption provides that no shared responsibility payment will be due for a once-per-year gap in coverage that lasts less than three months. But this is mainly for US citizens residing abroad and meet IRS residency criteria

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Perry February 19

That 3 month coverage gap doesn’t cover those that have lost their job and coverage and are looking for work? Seems unfair… There are a lot of people that have lost their jobs and coverage, me included… I’m screwed…

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Paula Caster December 10

Obama is robbing everybody cant no one afford this crap ppl have bills to pay kids to take care of animals to take care of this is just another bill for ppl to pay and i think everyone can agree we have to many bills already i hope trump gets all of the crap thrown out

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Phil Duran December 30

This is why people need to be in control of their lives and not the government. There isn’t a one size fits all. Some people dont have the money. some people are really healthy and would rather give to their kids than health insurance. But NO, Obmama and the dems forced this control on us and now something important for many is now in the hands of the politicians. This is POWER over people plain and simple

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Andy (Author) January 18

A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll finds that 45% of Americans think the 2012 health law is a “good idea,’’ the highest mark since pollsters began asking about President Barack Obama’s vision for a health overhaul in April, 2009.

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Ray S January 25

They are probably getting it free! Hell with them, i cannot afford either the garbage insurance or the penalty. I am not going to file ever again, let them come get nothing! Communist!

dale November 28

anyone know what is the Penalty for not having insurance for 2017?????

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Andy (Author) November 28

Estimated to be the same as 2016 per the table above. Final penalty amount to be released by the IRS later this year.

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FedUp November 16

Daughter just got booted off my plan. Now looking at the ripoffs going on with health insurance and medical services. She lives in a basement and makes $20 an hour. Her out-of-pocket (deductible + premiums) will be $10,000l the insurance would pay to go get a check up. I know of millionaire business people that show zero income and get family coverage for $30 a month. That should be criminal. Simple solution, base it on GROSS income, not NET. Of course the money that runs this country would not allow that to happen. This whole system will implode one day.

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SET55 November 11

It seems that many people commenting here don’t understand the ACA. You should go here to see the kind of plans that you’re eligible for depending on your income and household size and the State where you live. http://www.savingtoinvest.com/obamacare-premium-tax-credit-ptc-to-offset-impact-of-health-insurance-premiums/

I just used it to calculate premiums for a family of 4 making $80,000 a year in Arkansas that expects to have low usage of doctors. The premium came up $614 a month for a Bronze plan MINUS $283 a month (that’s the tax credit). So the premium being paid by the family would be only $331 a month. So I’m not sure whether the people who are claiming high premiums are even checking the marketplace to see if they qualify for a credit. Seems like many of you are just contacting regular insurance companies.

If you have no income or income less than the income level that requires you to file a tax return, you are exempt from the penalty. If you have Medicare, that qualifies as minimum health insurance coverage and you are exempt from the penalty.

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Obamacare Sucks December 11

I think we understand it pretty well. I just used it to calculate my premiums for my wife and I. Together we make $44,000 and we have to pay $178/month after tax credits for a plan that does not cover my medications or services until we reach the $12,000 deductible. No that $12,000 was not a typo. Mind you, our school loans are not taken into account either, each of us pays $700/month. So we essentially have to pay an extra $178/month for something that will only cover us in the VERY worst of situations, which if one of those situations arises we are screwed anyway because we have to reach a $12,000 deductible and have a 40% coinsurance. 40%!!!! The ACA is a joke. America is a joke. I go to the doctor once a year for my Crohn’s checkup and get the two same medications every month and now I have to pay a $115 penalty every month thanks to the ACA because that is my only viable option.

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My4kidsm0m December 13

I see that you have posted the same response to many people with many issues here. Your assumption that people who aren’t seeing the premiums and plans that you are seeing must be using private insurance carriers to get their quotes is wildly inaccurate. I know many people, myself included, who have used the ACA since it began and have seen horrible changes that have completely priced us out of coverage. Policy options and prices vary widely by state. Your numbers sound reasonable…mine and many others are nothing close to that. I have had to get new coverage with new carriers every single year because the insurers have either cancelled my plan or completely gone out of business. The first two years, I had hundreds of options. This year, I had only 32. I live in Texas, am a single mother with two dependents and a household income of less than $60K. A plan for myself only (my children are insured by their father) will run me anywhere from $400-800…that is with the $70 subsidy and a LOW usage filter. These policies have a minimum deductible of $6000, for just myself. This is NOT affordable.

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Ray S January 25

Yes i did that ecactly. With my tax credit it is 704. a month. Insane. 7500 deductible, just a stupid plan. The Communist aholes who wrote this mess do not even use it!

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Clay March 2

The subject matter that everyone is leaving out of all these articles is that weather or not you can afford any of these health insurance plans, most of these $600 to $900 a month plans they speak of are catastrophic insurance plans! They don’t pay for shit unless it is major medical, & even then the insured pays the first $12000. Wow isn’t that a great deal? The whole system is crooked as hell !!!!!

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Joe Dad November 1

OK so serious question: I don’t work for a company who has a health plan so I have to buy private insurance as apparently I make too much yet I am definitely middle class. Suppose I don’t get private insurance and save the $1630 per month for a $6500 deductible for a family of 5 very healthy people and we use that money to make our wellness visits and perhaps even a minor emergency room visit. What happens if God forbid, we have a major medical issue or accident? I don’t mean to sound ignorant but we’ve always had insurance so I’m honestly not sure what happens in that scenario today for people who don’t have insurance. Obviously, the hospital treats you but who is on the hook for the bill? Can this bankrupt you?

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Jayjay November 1

I need this answer too! We’ve always had health insurance and we’re not crazy renegades. Our income is above any subsidy and paying these crazy premiums for essentially emergency only coverage is just INSANE. We have 2 children and because of our focus on nutrition and alternative care they are healthy. The tax penalty seems it will only be a third of what our expected sky-high premiums are going to be. REALLY?! *THIS* is better than it was 4 years ago when I had not only a CHOICE of reasonably-priced policies but I also had a choice of companies…which I no longer do! Our household budget could use those funds for all the things that keep us healthy that aren’t covered under insurance…but what would happen if…? Before all this madness, medical providers could refuse to see you if you didn’t have health insurance. Now? The game’s completely different. I don’t think we can be refused anymore…can we? And what would happen if we get a broken bone? Jesus help us figure out what to do!

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SET55 November 11

See my response to Joe Dad and my general response above

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SET55 November 11

You need to go here to calculate whether you’re eligible for certain health plans and savings under the ACA: http://www.savingtoinvest.com/obamacare-premium-tax-credit-ptc-to-offset-impact-of-health-insurance-premiums/

I just used it to calculate premiums for a family of 4 making $80,000 a year in Arkansas. The premium came up $614 a month for a Bronze plan MINUS $283 a month (that’s the tax credit). So the premium being paid by the family would be only $331 a month.

It all depends on what State you live in, the total amount of your income, household size, etc. so you should use this calculator. If your State opted to run its own marketplace and not healthcare.gov, you’ll need to go there to see what kind of plans, premium reductions, savings, etc. you qualify for. However, this link will give you a good general idea of what you qualify for.

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Judy October 30

Yes I know what you mean. Mine alone will be 1,069.00 per month with B/C. Thinking about dropping it. I am not gonna pay for those who don’t have insurance. We can Obama this.

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SET55 November 11

See my comment posted.

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Tina October 27

My husband an I just got our new premium for 2017 under Blue Cross….2016 = $906 2017= $1,314 44.90% increase
We have the cheapest plan they offer. 2 doctor visit co-pays a year and nothing else until you pay out of pocket $6,800 each.

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SET55 November 11

See my comment posted. I think many people aren’t even checking to see if they can get a credit. If you go directly to an insurance company, you won’t get the credit.

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cooptys January 17

I did check for a credit. AND I spoke to someone who told me the same exact thing I already check on. $800 a month for two people with a $320 credit making our monthly premium not very affordable.. Why should we skimp on buying food and gas for our cars to pay that kind of money. And we never go to the doctor. thats bull. It is not fair for us to have to pay for others health coverage who have none. There has to be a better way.

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FedUp November 16

Join the discussion

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Diane December 15

That’s more like a 45% increase, not 90%. Still an unacceptable increase though. I can’t think of one thing that went up 45% since last year. Medical/Insurance sector getting rich and we’re getting raped. Single payer system like other countries have done is the only answer.

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Jason C. Perkins February 4

44.9% dipsh!t

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Adonis0P February 20

I lived in France which is single payer. Your “premium” is hidden in the astronomical taxes you pay on income. You’re still on the hook for 30% of your bill and there isn’t a maximum out of pocket so something catastrophic can still bankrupt you. Then there is quality of care no one talks about with single payer. I had immense pain in my jaw for two weeks. The country doctor said I had wisdom teeth (at the age of 26) that needed to be pulled. I have never developed any wisdom teeth. By the time I could see a dentist (a three week wait time) the pain went away. I’m 41 now, still no wisdom teeth. Then I broke my hand there. The emergency room staff set it wrong and now I’d have to re break my hand to have it set properly. Anyone touting single payer have never had to live with single payer. The answer is to realize insurance is for purely catastrophic events and anything else, like check ups, are to be payed out of pocket. When doctors and hospitals can’t bill an insurance company whatever they want they’ll have to lower their prices to an affordable out of pocket level. And ultimately the government needs to get the heck out of the business altogether and allow people to make choices that are right for themselves instead of making blanket one size fits all assumptions about what people need and stop acting like everyone’s mommy and daddy. Period.

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Susan October 25

I have not worked for the passed 3 years due to my knees going bad ,so no income to file for taxes. I was first forced on Medicaid for 2014 and refuse to have the state of Nevada monitor my checking account I did not receive any medicaid for 2015 and 2016. This next year I go onto Medicare and the penalty for not affording insurance is scary plus it affected my other plan choicenB, C, D, E ,F etc that I have to buy now that I will be getting state retirement while I wait a year to get Social Security. I could not use the medicaid due to the scariness of the Recovery Act of Medicaid 1993 since I own my home and cars and want my disable son to inherit my house should I passed away before him. This crazy government Obama care is a nightmare. Wonder who will own anything or how families afford to eat, have a place to sleep let alone any clothes to wear. Never dream this was my so called Golden Year goal is to give all I earned to the government.

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SET55 November 11

If you had no income or made income below the level required to file a tax return, you don’t have to pay a penalty. If you have regular Medicare, you don’t have to pay a penalty.

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Perry February 19

I am sure the income he had was drawing of of a retirement account, sort of like what I had to do last year while out of work when the jobs dried up. (I had to draw out 33K last year and pay a 10% penalty for the luxury of having to live.) Now since I could not afford insurance for part of the year I am being raped again when I file my taxes because of this ACA penalty. So, not only do I have to pay the 10% penalty so that I did not lose my house and could afford to eat and pay for utilities, but now I have to pay the ACA penalty on top of that for the money I had to draw out. (That’s pretty messed up…)

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Nathan Jordan October 22

Question regarding where and when to file for the following scenario: We are 62 and 61. My spouse has individual coverage in 2016 through marketplace and I am covered by employer. Neither of us qualify for subsidies due to household income of approximately $68,000. My employer does offer spouse and/or family coverage, but it is considered unaffordable under the aggregate of two because premiums for her would be over 8.16% of our household income for 2017, as they have been for prior years. (Just became aware of this.) We do not want to go into 2017 without coverage for her. She wants to have the option of purchasing a Catastrophic plan for 2017 and we know only that she must file for a ‘Hardship Exemption’, but we’re confused as to if we file an application through the Marketplace based on projected income for 2017, or have to wait until our 2016 taxes are filed and complete form 8965, Part III?
Thank you for any help and/or direction.

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Pam September 28

My husband is disabled and I work part time. He receives medicare and I have insurance through obamacare. I pay $450 per month for health insurance which doesn’t really cover anything with a $4k deductible. I just received my estimated premium for 2017 which is $600 per month a $150 increase! I cannot afford to pay our bills anymore if 1/2 of my net income goes to insurance. But if I don’t I will have to pay $1500 in penalties. My husband’s income is fixed and i can no longer work full time because of back and neck injuries from rearend collisions i was in 20 years ago. Our income is not increasing but our taxes keep going up. How is this affordable?

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Tina September 28

My husband and I are in the same boat except I am on disability due to progressive Multiple Sclerosis and not on Medicare yet. The only way we made it last year was for me to be in a drug trial so I got my meds, doctor visits, etc for free, but it ends in November 2016. My husband is self-employed and our premiums will now go from $906 per month to $1359 per month and the insurance is worthless.
I need to see so many other specialist but all of our disposable income goes to pay our premiums and so I am just waiting to go on Medicare which is a shame.
Now, we will not be able to pay our premiums in 2016 and stay in our home so we will just not have insurance.
Our politicians have screwed us and Hilary wants to continue this BS. We all need to stand up and say NO MORE screwing with our lives.
And, to all of the defenders of this fraud…..my guess is that you are not paying this kind of premium.

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BRIAN October 4

I’m sorry, but this is absolutely criminal that Obama is getting away with punishing people for something like this.. I mean, think about it, you’re being punished and fined an amount that’s equal to an entire 2 week paycheck.. Can he do this?? Can he really do this and get away with it??? This is just so wrong and for the record, I’ll be fined $695 for 2016.. How much is it for 2017?? A $1000.00??? At what point does someone step in and stop this madness???

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Marc October 27

You step in by voting Conservative…not Liberal!!!!

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cooptys January 17

YUP Trump has to help us

Judy October 30

AMEN

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cooptys January 17

AMEN Totally

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Ray S January 25

Yes he got by with it because idiots listened to him and Pelosi and Reid. Pelosi, “We have to pass the bill before we know what is in it”. Idiots.

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krag October 17

Pam, what type of social security is your husband getting? SSI does not count as income but SSDI does. You may also qualify for a Low income exemption if the lowest cost premiums are more than 8%.of total income. Meaning If both you make $30,000 x 8% = $2400 ($200 mo.) max per year in insurance premiums.

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SET55 November 11

This doesn’t make sense unless your income is very high. If your husband has regular Medicare, he’s considered covered by minimum essential healthcare coverage. If you’re only working part-time, you should be eligible for the premium tax credit which would substantially lower your monthly premium. You can only get this tax credit, however, if you apply for health insurance through healthcare.gov. If you’re applying for insurance directly to an insurance company, you won’t get that credit. Many people say they are getting Obamacare, but this isn’t true if they aren’t using healthcare.gov to get their insurance. I suggest that you go here: to see more on http://www.savingtoinvest.com/obamacare-premium-tax-credit-ptc-to-offset-impact-of-health-insurance-premiums/ if you qualify for the tax credit.

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LKRS December 13

SETT55, I am not sure where you are getting your information. We have gone through the application process on the website. Our income is not very high. We only qualify for a small subsidy. But even with the subsidy, our premiums for a healthy family of 6 would be $1,200 per month, with a $12,000.00 deductible. That is absolutely insane! Why pay that premium when I can’t even use the insurance?

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Lisa February 3

Obama care ain’t worth a crap..we have like 4 choices this year all with very high deductible. The 2017 increase takes back what they are crediting. Also no one around here accepts the insurance. “We don’t accept Obama care” Just not worth it.

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Mark September 23

Question for a tax professional…What is the 2017 penalty amount going to be if 1) Filing Joint (only husband and wife) 2) Wife does not have a job 3) Husband does work, but his employer pays for his health-care, but not hers 4) Husband cannot afford to add her to the policy.

What will the penalty be for 1 of the ‘Joints’ to not have coverage. Plus, is filing joint considered “Family” when figuring Non Health Insurance Tax Penalty assessment????

I mean holy S**t more than $2000 for a family that doesn’t carry health insurance!?!?!? You’re right Darlene, Extortion by HIGHLY organized Criminals that is worse than the Mafia…and LESS transparent if you can believe that!

I hear of people going to places like South America to have PLANNED surgeries/procedures done and they still only pay about 1/2 what it would cost here WITH insurance…not only that, but the health-care provided is far superior to here. AND, that includes all Airfare, Hotel, and travel expenses. For example, expected Mothers are gong abroad to deliver their children. If that doesn’t scream BROKEN SYSTEM, then I don’t know what does.

BROKEN SYSTEM OBAMA…and way to pass it on a Sunday when we were all looking the other way!

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krag October 17

Mark, The filing status does not matter with healthcare, it is the total household income. If the working spouses plan exceeds 9.5% of income you may be able to opt out and go for a cheaper government plan.

Unless you make a fair amount of money with dependent children I doubt you’ll get near the $2000 tax penalty.

Sorry, too many variables to give a direct answer.

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Kristie November 3

You are fined per person that does not have insurance. The ones that have insurance are not fined. The 2017 tax year fine has not yet been set. For the 2016 tax year it is $695 per adult, or 2.5% of your income above 20,300 to a max of the cost of a bronze plan, whichever is greater. Maybe you can qualify under one of those exemptions and skip the fee for not having insurance for your wife.

Unfortunately employer coverage is considered affordable for the entire family as long as the employee only premium meets the affordability requirement. Dependents do not qualify for any subsidy if the employer offered coverage meets the requirements. The “family glitch” in the ACA isn’t helping you at all!

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Errol December 30

I am in the exact same scenario. The employee-only plan at my employer is reasonable — same cost as the 2.5% penalty actually — so it only makes sense to buy it. However, adding my spouse increases the monthly premium 3.5x and we don’t want to pay that. So if I buy the employee-only premium, will my wife still be hit with the 2.5% penalty? If so, that would double the cost ($2300 for my insurance + $2300 for wife’s penalty). In that case I would waive insurance altogether and take the $2300 total household penalty. Can anyone confirm?

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Perry February 19

That is a true statement… As long as the employee’s premium is under the 9.5% cap it is considered an affordable plan, but when a family plan costs 30% of your income and you still have a $6000 single deductible or a $12000 family deductible, what good is the insurance at all? We are paying $1700 a month for what amounts to catastrophic coverage. We are being RAPED by these worthless insurance plans… I don’t know about you, but $1700 is nearly double my mortgage… I can’t afford to continue to buy this crap when it doesn’t help anyone but the insurance carrier…

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Stephen July 19

Obamacare passed into law when both the Senate and the House of Respresentatives were controlled by the Democratic Party. No member of the Republican Party voted in favor of Obamacare. Not…One…Republican…Voted…for…Obamacare.

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Marc October 27

So….We should ALL vote Republican in our upcoming Presidential election. That’s our ONLY hope!

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Darlene June 1

Yes, I will be voting republican this year.. I am an independent, but I did vote for Obama and was all for Obamacare until I found out that we are getting raped by the insurance companies. They should have put a cap on the insurance costs so we COULD get affordable healthcare. It was not only Obama but the whole congress party( majority Republican) that change and voted for this BS. And yes, this is extortion by organized criminals(worse than the Mafia), in my opinion. My husband lost his job back in 2008 and I did without insurance for over 4 years because of house payments and bills and food that were priority. He is working now and I am losing my job. My utility and insurance bills have gone up so it will be even harder to pay for medical insurance. I really don’t know where the money will come from to pay for medical insurance if I cannot even afford to pay my bills. I do not like Trump, but I will vote for him if he repeals Obamacare.

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Stephen July 19

No republican voted in favor of obamacare. The bill passed in 2010 when democrats were in control of the senate and house of respresentatives. No republican…not one.

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Marc October 27

Thank you Stephen for clarifying that NO REPUBLICAN voted for ObamaSCARE! I just checked my premiums for 2017. I currently pay $273.00 per month for a $4500.00 deductible. (I have NOT used my insurance at all this year because I am in good health…but I am required BY LAW to have health insurance). My 2017 premiums (To renew my current plan) jump to over $777 per month and my annual deductible sky-rockets to $14,300!!!! CRIMINAL EXTORTION OF YOU ASK ME!!!

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Dr Who May 4

Wish “Obamacare” would be called what it really is; “Extortion-Care” …. no public option, no choice other than the criminal insurance industry …

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Sharon April 5

I had been receiving free care but when I went to have my tax done the preparing took 85.00 from my return. Was that right?

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Renee July 22

Yes, it is right because you have a choice to either do it yourself or pay someone to do it for you, unile Obamacare you are forced to get it or pay a penalty…. That’s called extortion

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KATRYNAH March 24

Same boat

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Nehara March 18

Pretty soon, we will be penalized for not taking shower everyday… water companies will prove this.

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Marc October 27

Indeed! And what’s to stop them from enforcing penalties for not buying specific foods, clothes, housing, etc.??? NOTHING!!! YOUR VOTE MATTERS!!!! ESPECIALLY IN THIS COMING PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION!!!! This IS the tipping point for America!!!

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Nehara March 18

This is not fair at all. Why do I have to get penalized just because I do not have insurance? I am healthy. I take care of my self. I exercise. I eat healthy food. I don’t smoke. I don’t drink. What do I need insurance for? I have always liked Obama but because of this, but I wont be voting for Democrats this year to get this crazy thing repealed.

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Natalie April 4

Same here. So much for “freedom”. I really hope that next president will revoke this nonsense! And it’s not healthcare — it’s sick care that healthy people don’t need!!!

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A.Edgar Allen September 26

Did you pay attention in history or political science? Presidents cannot “revoke” laws passed by Congress (and not later vetoed). Once it has become law, as with the Affordable Care Act, only Congress can undo it.

And a question for you — if healthy people are seriously hurt in a car accident, who pays for their treatment?

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TLC October 6

“If healthy people are seriously hurt in a car accident”, they pay for their treatment. You see, some people do take responsibility for things that happen to them. I know I would, or my family and friends would see to it that my bills would be paid. This argument that any accident or emergency room visit is never paid for is a straw man. Most decent people pay for their care.

But know with my insurance going from $147.00 (pre ACA) to $598.00 (just got my new price from Providence Health Plans of Oregon) I will probably be thinking about paying the penalty because it is a lot cheaper.

Jayjay November 1

Who pays? Depends upon the terms of their automobile policy…but most auto policies I’ve seen include medical care for not only the policyholder but for anyone else harmed…including the uninsured…which is rare given in my state we’re all also mandated to have auto policies. However, my auto insurance doesn’t cost me all of my income!

Jeff August 28

So you don’t have fire insurance on your house or apartment because you are ‘so careful with fire’? That makes no freaking sense. As a society, we decided that if you happen to get really sick or get in a bad accident (yes it happens to people who exercise and eat healthy food), we are not going to leave you to die on the street. You’ll get coverage. And for that, you must pay into the system. Move to Somalia if you like your ‘freedom’ so much. It’s very free there. Pretty much no government at all.

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Sherrill October 12

Jeff, there is a group of people who fall right on the edge here – they are defined as the middle class but really they haven’t seen increases in their salaries in a while when compared to the cost of living increases. If one works for a small employer or two, they may offer the minimum insurance and the employee may get 50% of the bare minimum offerings covered. Should the employee need to be hospitalized, it could cost them up to $6250 for an individual and double that for families in deductibles up front. There is a gap here that needs to be addressed for these high cost deductibles. I work in the industry. The hospitals are doing well. Big Pharma is doing very extremely well, and they have incredible influence. The act was closed to 1000 pages which our government admitted to not reading through and there is room for improvement.

I will tell you that I see many getting insurance who have not paid anything into the system. Those in the middle class have paid into it and I am concerned there will be nothing for them when it is time to access.

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Susan October 30

Maybe the CEO’s of big insurance companies need to help their companies by not taking huge salaries and bonuses! They seem to be the ones getting rich during Obamacare!

Jay March 13

I lost my job in July 2015 so I lost my coverage because it was paid for by the my job and when I tried to apply for a new health insurance I was told its late now and i can only do so starting in 1/1/16. Am I going to get penalized for not having insurance for the rest of 2015?

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Leigh Ann March 21

I’m in the same boat.

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Chrissy September 19

Loss of health insurance because of loss of job qualifies you to get insurance through obamacare without waiting.

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krag October 17

Is this board off kilter?
Your post is dated last Sunday but you mention 2015?

Either way you have 3 months penalty free to change or register for a new healthcare plan anytime of the year with a “life change”, which means within 90 days of losing a job.

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Judy March 4

I have always voted democratic, however, this year because of the penalties obamacare has put on the working class, I will vote republican in order to get obamacare repealed. I will just hope that the powers that be will have some kind of control over crazy ideas.
Us American people should have paid better attention to the obamacare issues, but, when you are working 2 jobs and have a family to raise, there is very little time left, which our government knows.

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Lisa P. March 24

Unfortunately, with all the red tape, I’m liable to be dead before ObamaCare is repealed. :-(

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Natalie April 4

I never voted for democrats because they support big corporations (big greedy insurance companies in this case) and “choke” small businesses like mine. Now this spread out on everyone :(

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Obama Sucks September 13

BS!! I guarantee you waste many hours each and every week watching ignorant, mindless TV shows, so because of lazy scumbags like YOU that didn’t bother to research this fraudulent Act or to listen to those of us that DID, now the rest of us have to suffer for YOUR stupidity, and slothful laziness. Suck it up. YOU put us here, sh!t-stain.

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David February 23

Anyone know what happens if you have one child over 18 that does not carry insurance because his paternal father did not do it? Should you just let him claim himself going forward to avoid paying fine on entire households income?

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Andy (Author) February 23

That could be a cheaper option as individual penalty can be less than family. But does he file a tax return? Also he cannot be claimed as a dependent (and get all the benefits) and file an individual return

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Kathy March 8

I am exactly in that situation. My adult son had some medical problems so he had been out of work and I’ve been supporting him AND paying medical bills for several years. Here is the catch 22…… he has NO income,, so when he tried to get Obama care they told him to try for Medicaid.. then Medicaid wants to know what I make and says he doesn’t qualify– I cannot afford to buy insurance for him– they send us round and round,,, Last year I paid out of pocket 26,000 for surgery he needed( I took it out of my retirement savings–I am currently retired).. I claimed him because of this and granted it helped my taxes to declare him, but I had to pay 982 dollars for his not having insurance. This year same thing— I paid several thousand in doctor bills.. he still can’t get insurance– I cannot afford what they want in premiums and they say he needs Medicaid–they send him back to Obamacare–just like last year– Well this year my penalty was 2200 dollars!! That is outrageous. I am a 64 yer old retired womane who worked my whole life. I have paid out of pocket for care for my son as he tries to get employment. Neither he or I have ever received any welfare or similar things…yet they are penalizing me like this. In order to pay what I owe.. I will have to take more money out of my retirement savings.

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Renee July 22

You qualify for an exemption… Do yourself a favor and make sure you do that…

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Peter July 28

You needed to go another way. Coverage for him could have been received under the ACA with discounts but only if you talk with someone that knows the law. Let me know if you want to know more.

Veronica February 19

I agree I get penalized for paying cash for mine and my son’s Dr. Visits! And now I have to pay a fine in top of that!

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sly February 18

Just got my taxes done on Sunday was the irs took $ 899 dollars from my money for health care reform .

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Kevin February 17

I was penalized like 270$ for only having health Insurance for six months of the year. So stupid! What happened to only getting penalized for not having it at all.

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brad February 17

Hi, I work as a union laborer. I was sent a letter in the mail stating I was covered for 8 months. Do I just pay for the 4 months that I wasn’t covered?

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Nehara March 18

I believe so…

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CMW February 9

obamacare is a socialist program. How dare he make Americans pay NOT to have health insurance. Thankfully, this socialist, enemy coddling , capitalism hating, America hating (and I could go on) will be gone soon. He’s done nothing but ruin the Country I love. Now we must defeat ole Hillary so obamacare can be repealed and our right to bear arms is protected; & lets not forget how our Troops have suffered between their pay/benefits and they do not have what they need to do their job. Obamacare & welfare are growing, while SS recipients received no raise in benefits. People pay into SS, taxpayers pay for welfare for lazy people and illegals; ultimately, Obama has screwed hard working Americans. Repeal obamacare!! God bless America & Our Brave Troops

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LogicalJames June 17

No, Obamacare is a facist program. All these billions are not going to the government, they are going to the private health insurance companies. The problem is that people keep confusing health CARE with health INSURANCE, two very different things. The corporate owned government forced this on us so that billions of our tax dollars are transferred directly to the giant heath insurance companies. And don’t forget, John Roberts, a republican appointee, is solely responsible for this monstrosity not being ruled unconstitutional because of the evil mandate, which he ruled to be a tax rather than a what it is, a penalty.

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Stephen July 19

John Roberts is leaving it up to “the people” to decide. Vote For Trump if you want obamacare repealed

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Debbie February 5

Wouldn’t it be cheaper to just pay the fine?

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Nehara March 18

It’s cheaper but still the idea of being penalized just because you did not but an insurance, that’s what is not acceptable. Pretty soon, we will be penalized for not taking a shower everyday.

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Illyrian321 February 1

Hay B O (Barack Obama) your insurance sucks to expensive and covers nothing by the time you reached the deductible your broke. We people need to show these heartless people who the boss is .

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MNematova April 4

I did say the same thing ..ppl with preexisting health condition attacked me big time! Im like really??? I recently joined HealthCareMinistry..Sharing program…better donate money for a good cause then to this moron..or to whoever who doesn’t want to work and get free health insurance…nuh…..Ok. So he did what he did I guess…but why make the premiums and deductibles go so high?????? 12k for an individual and 350$ premium…WTF? middle working class can’t not afford that! He aimed this on lower income class…so they would get off free…all for votes! what country we live in!

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jp January 31

Hard working Americans hate obamacare !!! We need to get rid of it

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Ana January 31

I’m sickened by the change in Obamacare from 2015 to 2016! Shame on the bastards that even came up with Obamacare. So many lives have been affected by this. We now need to decide which bills can wait and which ones need to be paid, how we will be able to pay rents, mortgages, cars, insurance..etc… to accommodate for this “Jokeomacare! Nice for the rich and government officials that don’t have a worry in the world. My family and I will be going “solo” in 2016. Bring on the fines. I will not pay into this bullshit system. I pray that Obamacare is repealed and replaced with a more suitable plan and that it happens very quick.

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Renee July 22

And next year the fines are even more….. EXTORTION at its finest

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RC January 29

Why in the world is health insurance being funneled through the workplace in the US??? Auto insurance is not done like this. This is TERRIBLE for businesses and also gives larger companies an unfair advantage by creating higher costs percentage wise on the smaller businesses. Why should someone working at a larger company having cheaper insurance than someone at a smaller company. Again no sense at all. It also creates a massive amount of paperwork that slows down company operations.

Take businesses out of the health insurance equation! Keep the insurance markets unsubsidized and have it be individual point of sale.

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Jayjay November 1

I’d LOVE to see personal responsibility come to health insurance. I AGREE – GET THE BUSINESSES OUT! It started out as an optional employment perk and it’s just twisted into a nightmarish pretzel. I wonder where the support would come from to get employers OUT and let the policy-holders IN?! THEN…maybe we could afford coverage and balance things backwards. I agree that keeping people from healthcare who have health issues is wrong…the only thing worse is THIS nightmare.

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Duke January 29

This is Bull, ObamaCare is the biggest joke of this country I have ever seen. This so called President OBAMA has done nothing for the American hard working people. It is bull when working people have to put out over 5000.00 or more a year for Medical Insurance that pays not a dam thing until you meet high deductibles. Look you worse president of american history, if you wanted to raise taxes you should had just raised them. Better yet you want to do something good, resign.

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Goodbye Obama January 28

Obama, its easy to force people to pay for something when it doesn’t effect your pocket. Lord knows you don’t have to pay for you health insurance. Middle class suffers from your bullshit and executive orders. I can’t wait until we get another president in there to whipe out all of your bullshit “Obamadontcare about middle class” plans. You gave it a good run but it seems like your final stretch and decisions are becoming less and less impressive.

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Candy January 28

Obama should not have been ever put in office..he’s costing more than helping

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Ken January 28

So do u only get charge fee per month u don’t have it or by the dead line even if I get it in February would I still b charged the whole fee

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Judy L January 25

When I tried to do me 2016 tax return I was told that since I only had it 4 mon. last year I had to pay a penalty of 495.00 for the 8 mon. I did not have it. Since I don’t have any state help and I didn’t cost the tax payers any money(I paid my dr. bills out of pocket) why should I have to pay?

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Rob January 28

If I had insurance starting on 2-4-2015 will I still pay a fine?

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andy February 11

you would be liable for 1/12 of the penalty as it is prorated assuming you keep your coverage from Feb through end of year.

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Jim January 28

If 8%of my yearly income cannot afford the lowest priced plan am I Exempted? Does that mean If the lowest priced plan costs $8000 yearly and my income is $99500 yearly I am exempt from the fine?

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Kenneth Massey January 27

The only insurance I can get that is covered by the AHCA is well over the 8% of my houshold income.

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jess January 27

just curious but how are families who cant afford healthcare going to beable to afford a 2 thusand dollar penlty??? doesnt make alot of sense

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Mitchell February 10

They will get it deducted from their return.

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Tyler January 27

So if i get health insurance now, would i still be fined the 695 for not having it last year?

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Christine March 12

If you had no insurance for all of 2016, you will be fined $695 per month..there is a worksheet to figure out what your fine would be..brings it down from the $695 amount each month. My husband and I had no coverage for 9 months of 2016, our fine comes to $1042 after doing the worksheets..there are 3 worksheets to do, you take figures from one and go to another and back and forth…loads of fun!

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Bree January 26

I just got penalized and I have insurance!!! My tax lady told me since I made 30,000 this year and only payed 104.00$ a month I am receiving a 750.00$ fine because the government feels I should be paying 170.00$ a month! This is all bullshit!

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Tony January 26

That can’t be right. You’re either not getting all the facts or your tax lady is screwing you. What type of coverage do you have?

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Denise February 12

Agreed, you need someone else doing your taxes; she is not correct.

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Dennis February 17

Denise, she is correct. This is one of the “things”, we were warned was coming and was all over the news (not so much the liberal press) over the new year.

Cyn February 1

Sadly, that is correct. You awarded a tax credit based on your income. So whatever yearly income you put when you completed your healthcare application that’s the amount that was taken until you file your taxes of course. At the end when you sign your application it lets you know that you when you file your taxes that amount will be compared to the amount entered. and if you recorded less or what you really earn, you will owe money and it comes out of your taxes. But if you recorded more than what you really make, you will be owed money and that will be added to your tax return. I’m sorry they took so much from your tax return.You should have looked into exemptions, see if you may qualify to avoid fees.

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chrystal February 5

DAMN that sucks

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Susan February 26

Same thing happened to me 2 years in a row. I prepared my own taxes . I make the same as you . One year I paid around 120.00 a month for a silver plan , the following year I paid about $ 190.00 a month for the silver plan ( hoping to not owe in around $750.00 again). Still had to pay in around $750.00. I even made almost $1,000.00 less this past year in addition to paying in more per month and they still charged me almost exactly the same dollar amount. Both years, never even used the insurance. Wish I had never got it and just paid the fines instead. I would have thousands of dollars in my bank account that are now forever gone. I had such good insurance through my workplace before all this and my young adult children were able to be covered through me as well. Really stinks.

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Scott July 27

That is simple, when you initially signed up for the plan, you were asked if you want to take the tax credit off each month of your insurance payment, you chose to do so. At the end of year, when your actual income was higher than your estimated income that was stated on healthcare.gov, you owed back the tax credits that were overpaid. You could corrected this situation by logging back into healthcare.gov when you realized that your income would be higher and adjusted your income. It would have adjusted the remaining tax credit you were owed (which of course was less than your initial signup.

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Zee January 24

How is the penalty calculated if out of a family of four, only one parent was without insurance for the whole year? We did not qualify for subsidies, but insurance and deductibles were so expensive for just one of us and children.

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Jess November 30

This is the exact situation I’m in, except we are below the poverty level. I hope someone does come along to answer your question.

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Andy (Author) November 30

Zee – So two answers. First the individual mandate is based on individuals. So even you have insurance and your family doesn’t you may still face a penalty. For any month during the year that you or any of your family members don’t have minimum essential coverage and don’t qualify for a coverage exemption, you are required to make an individual shared responsibility payment when you file your tax return. The payment is reported on Form 1040 in the Other Taxes section and on the corresponding sections on Form 1040A and 1040EZ.

In general, the annual payment amount is the greater of a percentage of your household income or a flat dollar amount, but is capped at the national average premium for a bronze level health plan available through the Marketplace.

Jess – If you are below the poverty level you should get subsidies via the premium tax credit. Or you may be able to claim a hardship exemption as outlined in the post.

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Lilly January 23

Nobody seems to understand a key reason for the trouble the world is in today. It is due to OVER POPULATION. We have TOO MANY people and not enough resources of any kind. Our fresh water resources and food supply can’t keep pace and don’t expect Health Care to keep pace. Go figure idiots. The world’s population doubled from 1910-1960, then DOUBLED AGAIN from 1960-2000. This had never happed in all of human history until after 1900. Look it up. Keep on having those babies and adding to the planets troubles! Alas nobody wants to FACE THE TRUTH!

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Loyd February 7

Trouble is most folks that say that aren’t willing to give up their seat or putting another baby on board. So we really need to get answers and solutions toward dealing with a huge population..Healthcare the BEST solution is to find ways to increase the number of people educated in working in those fields perhaps paying off student loans over time for work in free clinics or finding some way of increasing the number of teachers and classes in the healthcare field- implementing high tech classses online classes testing etc to effectivly bring good teachers to a higher number of students in a shorter amount of time — In EFFECT increase supply so the cost can come down. Reduce the amounts of tort claims while possibly increasing the number getting more people damaged by negligence defect etc relief while putting that relief in more realistic amounts so that the companies that insure against those type claims can more affordably insure your providers.. THERE are many things we could and SHOULD do within the realm of capitalist solutions. Socialists have never had effective solutions !! If someone puts just a few ticks on a goat and send it scurrying a 20 mile path toward you — you end up with a goat that is pretty healthy and prolly a few healthy ticks — same situation but this time they cover the goat with ticks — you better look out cause only the ticks with be coming and they will be coming for you! lol

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Stacie August 19

You failed to consider the real reason for outrageous healthcare and insurance costs: greed.

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Stephen July 19

Lilly…bless your heart. I hope you’re too young to vote

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Renee July 22

YOur comment has nothing to do with the lies we were told about Obamacare, the prices or the penalties

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Pauline January 22

How can you get health insurance if they keep telling you that you don’t qualify because you supposedly you make too much money. I make 20.000.00 a year. This is bull crap! I work and pay taxes and can’t afford health insurance. Where is out rights! We shouldn’t be made to have this.

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Antonio Riojas January 21

This is extortion by the the government

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kim lynch January 20

my son is 32 lives with me and i claim him he dont work and dont have health care ins. will i be fined for hom if o claom him

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Tony January 20

Yes, unless you take a chance and lie, it’s as simple as checking a box, that’s what I’m going to do for my wife.

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Mimi January 11

Affordable health act is anything but affordable!!! The cheapest my husband and myself can get is $781 a month!!! And the insurance is useless!! How in the world can a working family afford this?? We need change America!! We have no choice but to pay the fines for not having insurance. We can in no way pay these outrageous rates.

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Tina January 12

Agreed Mimi!
My husband and I pay $1,068 per month but when we reach our deductible of $6,800 each we can actually use it…..useless is right! It is terrible and I can not fit it into our budget no matter how much I cut.

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Tony January 3

How will the IRS know whether I had coverage in 2015 or not? What if I just lie and check the box that says I was covered? Are they really going to take the time to verify 150 million tax returns health coverage info?

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Rochelle January 15

Are you really going to take that chance and lie to the IRS? God speed, kid.

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ruby January 15

Yes, the IRS will verify. You might not get penalized right away but will receive a letter by the end of the year with the fee you owe for not having insurance as well as penalties…

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Lynn January 19

If you are W-2’d it shows if you had health insurance or not….I agree and resent the fact we are “forced to take health insurance” that is useless and unaffordable! how they ever though this was affordable should be “forced” to pay for everyone’s health insurance……I can’t wait till Obama is out of office.

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Ace December 24

I’m still in shock and awe that our Congress sold us out to the insurance industry. How unamerican, selfish and duplicitous of them. My premiums tripled after Obsmacare in 2015. Now they have gone up another 25% for 2016. I can no longer afford it and will cancel coverage. Thanks Federal government.

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Rich in Virginia December 27

Pre-Obamacare plan – including dental with ABCBS of Va. $401/mth with $750 deductible.
Same plan under Obamacare – $1187/mth w/o dental and $4200 deductible.
New plan under Optima first year – $529/mth and $6000 deductible/$6200 OOP
New Plan Under Optima 2nd year – $593/mth and $6250 deuctible and $6350 OOP
If you don’t have insurance, then they will fine you and hold & or use your tax refund if you get one.

A SMART PERSON would make sure that based on your income, you only pay in what you will owe or even less than what you will owe. They can’t take what they don’t have yet!

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Natasha December 18

Does “Medically Needy” count as insurance according the the ACA? Meaning does it meet the minimum coverage amount or whatever?

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Gerry December 18

So confused do to an over sight my wife and I lost health coverage at the beginning of this year…found out in August that my coverage was dropped through my employer….I do not understand what my penatly will be we made approximately 94000 this year and in August my wife was able to get good health coverage through her employer while my employer said tough crap and left me hanging …stupid me I picked up temp insurance thinking this would cover me but discovered yesterday in the eyes of the gov i was not covered so my real question is is it gonna be like 6000 dollars for a fine or is it gonna be 2%….can I file separately taxes wise to reduce for both of us due to me only making 38000 could this reduce it ?

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Ginger January 22

You will pay for the months that there was not coverage. 1/12 of the potential yearly penalty for each month not covered. There are short term gap exemptions if she went no more than 2 months without coverage. 2015 there is a maximum penalty of 2% of your income. Goodluck.

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Sonye' January 24

Hey Jerry, if your lapse in coverage is 3 months you will not owe a penalty and if you lost your insurance involuntarily you will not owe a penalty. Just for reference the penalty is the higher of 325 or 2% of your income with a cap of $975 per family.

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Ace Hack December 14

America protest by not paying into the so called affordable care act system. I can no longer afford it …can you? I’m not going to pay for it. Maybe if we all quit the system they will listen?
The end is nearer than when we first began.
One world government will soon be upon us…think about it.
You know the world is run by the richest Moby’s.
They own and run the Media…TV, NEWSPAPERS, HOLLYWOOD
, ECT. dare I say government ? Ya think???…everything is bought and paid for by the elite. They have always tried to portray something catastrophic going on in this world with one scare or another The Nuclear war…Natural diasters the weather changes…Terrorist’s now.
It is true those things exist but they hipe up the Fear …it’s still controlled by media and money and from the few richest in the world. They will try to scare us into believing we need one world government control. Don’t buy in… you will sell your very soul. Now we have have chips in our credit cards. Your next.

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ALICA December 11

My insurance has rose to almost $300 a month for 2016. I cannot afford that anymore. I was barely able to pay it before at $235. So, for 2016 I won’t have any. I make just under $30000 a year. But I’m single and living on my own. It’s either have health insurance and live in bad part of town where young women shouldn’t live or live decent and have no health insurance.

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karlee December 15

Very sorry. I only wish everyone understood that this is just the beginning of what many of us knew would become a disaster. In my household, we pay hundreds of dollars to have the legally required insurance, but it covers NOTHING until we pay $10,000 or a little more. The premiums everyone must pay for that type of non coverage, coverage is a tax!!! That, my friends- is not insurance. It seems more like Mafia protection money. We have to pay money and not have coverage- or we will be penalized for not having coverage. (My apologies to the Mafia.) We’d be better off paying cash for everything. Again, I am so very sorry about your situation. I wish you blessings and good changes so that you will have the required coverage. Our premiums doubled and our deductible increased substantially. I hold the Democrats solely responsible for this mess. They need to own up to it. It needs to be undone!
We could have had laws passed that improved the holes in our insurance laws, we never needed government medical insurance. They could have made pre-existing conditions against the law, and they could have made it possible to keep your adult children on your policy without penalty until they were 26 without this fiasco. It was forced down our throats with a Democratic controlled congress and senate December 2009.

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Tim olson January 16

The health care act is not a democratic thing the model was built around what Mitt Romany did in Massachusetts and the bill that Rand Paul introduced then it was taken from there I am not a Democrat or republican I vote for the candidate that I think fits my core believes the costs are driven by the drug companies and insurance companies until we stand up and take notice that these companies make our seniors chose between eating or buying there medicine that is the true travesty of the real problem

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Barb January 12

All my professional life I worked for companies that provided insurance at no cost or very little cost to me. And I was making between $55-60,000/year. In recent years, I have hit some hard times and was unemployed for more than a year because I was “overqualified”. I am now working for about half of what I was making before, no benefits at all, no holiday pay, no sick time, nothing. I have to pay rent, utilities, phone, car payment, auto and renters insurance. By the time the feds and the state take their slice of my income, I am running in the red every month. How the hell can I afford to pay $100-$200/month insurance premiums with astronomical deductibles. I have also noticed the incredible increases by the insurance companies on the deductibles and OOP limits. In this day and age, how can anyone making around $30,000/year afford that. Most of us wouldn’t even meet the deductible, then pay more in premiums for the next year with higher deductibles. We are just giving our money to the insurance companies and it is in no way “helping the middle class.” We are getting screwed! Last year, when I filed my taxes, I had been on unemployment for the entire year. But because I qualified for the maximum weekly benefit, I could not qualify for State assistance, but also couldn’t afford the insurance premiums. Not only did I not get the paltry refund on my taxes, but I had to pay additional because of the Obamacare penalties. Helping the middle class ….. that’s a load of crap. The government has no business being involved in the insurance business.

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glo January 18

Ditto!!!!!!

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Lynn January 19

Agreed!!!! 150%!!

RRRRRB March 9

Unfortunately, I’m facing the EXACT same scenario as you. My income is now half what it used to be, and I’m paying out more money than I ever have before. This “healthcare” plan will now cost me even MORE money that I DON’T have.

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Perry February 19

You see what this is don’t you? This is how the elite rob those that barely have their head above water to keep them struggling or to make them even poorer…

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LouLa December 7

Here is what you people don’t understand – I think you all who are barking about health insurance premiums being not affordable — you all are the very same ones who will expect care if you get sick and will most likely default on paying your hospital or doctor bill so guess what happens? They raise taxes to take care of the deficit you create by receiving healthcare and not paying for it. Americans complain too much. Most times when people complain that they cannot afford something, it is clearly that they don’t want to pay for it. Stop whining! If you are truly that broke, the state has programs that will help subsidize, if you cannot get subsidy and they tell you, you are making too much to get help, then guess what? It is simply that this is not a priority for you. Change your priorities. Stop whining, be responsible and grow up!

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Tina December 14

I have worked my since I was 14 / now 56 and have gladly paid for health insurance and felt it was the right thing to do even though I rarely used it. Because my husband and I make $65,000 per year combined we do not qualify for help. We just signed up for the cheapest plan, which is all we can afford, for $924 per month. $6,800 deductible per person before they will pay anything including office visits.
This is basically a catastrophic policy with a high premium or in my opinion a tax. I do not blame Obama, I blame our government as a whole for allowing it to happen. People must stand together to oppose this….it is shameful.

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Shane December 14

That is more than 8% of your income, you should be able to qualify for a true catastrophic policy outside of the network but you must file for the exemption.

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Dennis February 17

Not true Shane, “Catastrophic” plans are only available to ages 30 and under as I was told by the “exchange”, should also be in the faqs section of their website. From what I was told, these plans are geared towards low income students.

Tracy December 22

Not true LouLa… some of us are actually in a situation where we can’t afford it and are not eligible for subsidies. If I buy coverage at work (the kind of plan that actually covers something, the one without a $10000 deductible) it would cost my husband and I $600 per month. We don’t make much, so based on income alone we would be eligible for subsidies, but the catch is because a plan is offered at my job we can’t get subsidies. On the state exchange a plan would still cost us over $500 per month. Some people actually cannot afford to pay $6500 per year for insurance we do not need, I’d rather take the fine. And the worst part is the whole family is penalized…. my husband is not offered insurance at work so you would think he could qualify for subsidies. But no… if one person has it offered, nobody gets help paying. This entire system is BS.

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Mr. E January 3

I can tell ur one that has the easy life. Someone like me who barely scrapes by every month, and truly can’t afford the extra bill, isn’t even able to get government assistance. I make just barely enough to kick me off government assistance and just barely over “shit” care act. Not to mention I do get sick and its cheaper for me to go to any other doctor than what shit care wants me to go to. When I can go to a doctor for under 75 bucks and my “insurance” wants me to pay 150+ to see a primary care doctor yeah I call it bull shit insurance and think it’s the biggest joke ever. Some people can’t afford this bull shit. My job offers insurance but its half my biweekly pay so yeah I can’t afford that either. So why don’t u put urself in our shoes for once and realize that there’s about 10%+ of Americans that fall into that shit outa luck category.

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Ashley January 5

This is so far from true its disgusting. Lets set up a quick scenario of child support.. Its not deducted from your gross income and its considered part of your income for almost every “helpful” program out there. The only assistance program I have found that takes child support into consideration is day care. So my husband pays around 6000 a year in child support. That money never enters into our household but it is considered our income. Both of our both of our car payments together are almost less then what he pays in support a month. Our rent is less. We also have no cable and straight talk phones. We receive no food stamps or other government assistance programs. We MAY qualify for a 9 dollar premium reduction a month on our insurance. We have a new baby and both work full time at decent paying jobs and when I say we cannot afford at the very cheapest $300 a month plus $12000 deductibles I mean it. Its not that we choose not to its because we literally do not have 300 extra dollars a month. Would you like us to give up our home, a vehicle, maybe we should stop buying toys, clothing, and food for our children and ourselves and then well be able to afford the insurance every month that we still wont be able to afford. I got strep throat a few months back and paying the 85 dollars for the doctor visit had to come out of savings and its not even a 3rd of what our premium would be for a month. How you can look at the system and not realize it is broken. Some Americans were raised to work their very hardest and not take handouts. Im a college graduate working at a job that you don’t even need a degree for my husband is a tradesmen. We have both worked since we were 15. Him even sooner then that. My father watches my son because we cant afford daycare. Our only hope is that soon I will get a state job and get a pay raise and afford the insurance that is offered and be able to put my son in daycare so I can lessen the burden to my father who is a retired disabled veteran of 20 years. I do not know the circumstances of your life or of your family but do realize that there are Americans truly suffering from this. We have no choice in taking the penalty because its still less then what paying for insurance would cost. We as a free people should NEVER BE FORCED TO CONSUME A PRODUCT OR PAY A PENALTY!

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barbK January 19

Yes Yes Yes, life is very difficult. Try being the single parent. When I add up basic living, rent (to live in sub-stand housing), electric, car, auto insurance. And I don’t qualify for assistance. I truly don’t know what people do to dig out of these type of financial situations. There’s nothing left for food or clothing and now I’m suppose to pay for heath insurance. So what are we to do? I agree we should never be forced to consume a product especially one that only harms us and takes away our ability to provide true needs to our children and ourselves.

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Sis January 6

I pay my doctor bills my self, if I go to the hospital I pay it…but I can’t afford this high insurance. I still have to pay the dam pinalty. .
So what’s your smart ass answer to that……………I have pay
For all the iligals or refugees. .because they get everything g free

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Regina January 21

I do agree with you Lou La. But have you looked at the amounts you need to make in this country to get help? We are a family of 4 I use to work so we never had this problem but I recently got hurt had major back surgery and according to my doctor I can no longer work. I’m not looking for a hand out but have 2 growing boys. I am still better off then some yes agreed I at least have a roof over my head. But a family of four has to make less then something like $28,000 a year. Tell me living on Long Island paying all these taxes how can we afford to pay these crazy prices? I agree some people just are winning like the guy who makes over $95,000 a year if you make that much you can afford it. But not everyone complaining here can I know I can’t we barely make it

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Ranger January 23

It’s obvious based on the comments whose paying for the insurance and who isn’t. You’re obviously not paying for it so you have NO FREAKIN’ CLUE what you’re talking about. I support a family of 6. My premium in 2015 was $2500 a month and in 2016, BCBS of NC reduced the doctors we can see and raised my monthly premium to $3100. My father-in-law thought I was lying until I showed him my bill. It’s not exactly “whiny” trying to decide whether to make my house payment or pay my health insurance bill.

Do all of us a favor and STFU. You have absolutely NO CLUE because you don’t have to pay for this BS.

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Kathy March 8

I HAVE insurance..always have– my adult son does not but I have paid 100 percent for ALL his medical care.. Do you really think it is fair that I be penalized 2200 for that? No one has paid for us– but apparently I am paying for other people out there somewhere..

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Tracy March 27

So what about everyones situation before Obamacare? My family makes 60,000 year family of 6 , but keep in mind wven after taxes its not even that amount. We already had the badics 1 car payment 1 house mortgage payment and just reg utility bills and we skimped already on groceries , just the badics. So when obama care came into play we we coukdnt affird indurance for me it is too high at hubbys sork and through tbe exchange its like they fisnt care what peoplles situtatjkn was before So They expect is to let tbe van go bavk to bank i need my one decrnt car . Not like you can get out of a car oayment then u have bigger probkems not like I can sell my house how would i get another when its nit wirth what i paid for it 8 years ago . You see not everything is what u believe some already had basic bills and cant downsize anymire to affird the healthcare or the penalty.

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JSmith April 14

Maybe you should have rented your house instead of buying it? Another brain-washing that is routinely done in America: buying house is NOT a good option for a lot of people, unlike what your government and society makes you believe.

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Nancy March 29

You must have plenty of money is all I can say! It’s not priority it is survival! Americans should not be forces to buy something they can’t afford that’s the bottom line! And Obama care is a rip-off designed to make government officials richer and the working class poorer. Why don’t they live on minimum wage and try to raise a family? Their family is set for life thanks to hardworkingpeople trying to get by!! What an asshat you are to even think it is a priority.

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Advocate November 3

LouLa, Perhaps the people here (“YOU people” as you put it) are tired of being taken advantage of. I see that there are a lot of hard-working Americans on this blog speaking their mind. If you even have a brain, “LouLa”, it should occur to you that insurance premiums have increased dramatically since the start of “Obama Care” but the quality of benefits has decreased (higher deductibles, etc). By the time the insurance premium is paid, there often is not much money left to ACTUALLY seek healthcare. People are conveying that it is increasingly difficult to pay bills when the government is embezzling money from us (not to mention that it is totally Communist in doctrine). So, why don’t you get your head out of your %#@ and you GROW UP and pinch yourself so that maybe you can wake up from the little fantasy world you appear to live in. How Obama Care solves anything is a mystery. If it is so great, then why doesn’t President Obama and his family and Congress have it?

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francis December 4

I have daca do I need to get me a insurance

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Chelsea December 3

Does anyone know the answer to this…

I have had insurance all year. My husband and I got married in June at which time I added him to my insurance. He, however, has been unemployed all year and therefore did not have insurance prior to me adding him. Will we have to pay a penalty?

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karlee December 15

He will have to pay a portion of a penalty- for every month he did not have insurance. if he was without insurance half the year, he will have to pay 50% of the penalty. Best of luck. I hope it’s not too much.

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Alan April 17

The fact that Chelsea’s husband was unemployed prior to them getting married will not qualify him for an exemption?

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Crile November 25

It is unfathomable to me that Americans do not demand single payer or a form of it from their elected reps or throw their reps out. The US is the only one of the 16 developed nations that does not have some form of single payer HC. Is everyone else in the world out of step or are we out of our minds? Our HC outcomes are rated 37th in world, our infant death rate is the highest in the industrialized world and our HC costs are double that of any of our industrialized competitors except Israel. How’s that for a competitive disadvantage? Look up how many deaths a year are attributable to hospital mistakes. It would take a staggering amount of 747’s to drop out of the sky to approach the total.

Full disclosure. Wife has a history of breast cancer. No exchanges in our state. Monthy premium w/suppliment $350, deductable $6,700. You make the call relative to penalty.

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big December 12

That’s because America doesn’t really care for its slaves, the powers that be only care about money and power , and how they can take it from us, .We are all slaves.NWO

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karlee December 15

I think it all went to heck- back in the 70’s when they started with the HMO. It has only grown more complicated. How many people do you see now before you see the doctor? We used to go to the dr, some had NO receptionists or assistants. Now, my doctor has two assistants, and two people up front before I ever see him. The paper work causes cost increases. The HIPPA laws added great burdens and expenses to our medical system. No one talks about that. We have some amazing strides and growth in the medical field, but it has been an uphill battle for the medical professionals trying to keep their heads above the demands of paper work, and managed care. We don’t need a single payer system, we need less intervention by non medical interventionists!

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Tim December 21

Those figures about USA healthcare are complete crap. Other countries ABORT all their babies and dont even try to save premie babies. We do and sometimes they dont make it.

Anyone who looks into these bullshit progressive communist claims about our health care will see how fabricated and twisted they are.

If you think you can get better heath care in 37 other countries you go for it. Its complete total bullshit.

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mark November 25

I have health INS, but can’t afford to use it because of the high deductables, so I don’t understand why I should keep paying for it. I would rather pay into a medical savings account, not a use it or lose it plan but a savings plan.

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Jess December 5

I think its turning into a communist government, the way they tax you for not having insurance, and give it to to people who are over here illegally. I’m voting republican this time , they say that they will get rid of this obamacare forced insurance.

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mark December 6

I will be forced to react the same way, (voting republican). Carson understands the problem, however might have to do Trump, the front runner. I’m a democrat, I don’t want Hillary. I’m way off subject, I might just not vote and see how it all turns out.

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TheDudeAbides December 11

You’re not a true democrat if you’d vote for the other party, just as a Republican wouldn’t be a true Republican if he/she would vote for the other party.

If you sympathize with liberal ideas, but would vote for a Republican because the Democrats have lost touch with reality on a specific political talking point/piece of legislation, then I would have to say you’re a Realist who sympathizes with liberal principles, not a Democrat. Because to a party, what the party wants will always matter more than personal opinion.

Diane December 18

No. You have to vote! Many people died for our right to vote. I agree I don’t want Hillary and I don’t see a Republican I trust, esp. loony Trump who seemed like a good man at first. Too bad he is showing that for a supposed smart business man that he is immature. Anyway. I have friends who lost jobs in the insurance field due to downsizing in their companies because of Obamacare. Also the deductibles are too high from what I read on here. Does anyone see yet any stats re: the rate of people needing medical assistance is going down due to Obamacare? I do give the credit where it is due that there are more lower income people seeking medical care. Do we have enough Drs. to care for them?

jrj90620 November 24

What we need are incentives for people taking better care of themselves and not using much health care.Obamacare moves in the opposite direction,incentivizing people to use more health care.Typical crazy Democrat logic.

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Jack November 22

It was and always will be a tax on the American people. I’m glad to see Obama gone next year. Hopefully things will get better for the middle class working American. It would appear that we the middle class making 40-50,000 a year maybe better off perusing a lower paying job and get on welfare. ….The whole affordable health care act is BS. It has cost me over 100.00 per month increase each year that the plan has been in affect. 2014. $258. 2015 $359 2016 $470 and this is a silver plan with tax credit. Can’t afford, so Obama you can go f… yourself . Your plan sucks. Tired of getting raped by the so called leader’s of our country.

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Shane Billings December 8

My insurance is going from $90/month with $5k deductible (it was a grandfathered policy) with generally fair copays, etc. to $285/month with a $6450 deductible that only provides a preventative “periodic health exam” at no charge and out of country emergency service. All else is not covered until deductible is met! Between my wife and I, this is the best plan that will cost us nearly $7k per year!! We LIVE IN A COMMUNIST nation now, thanks Barack Huessein Obama! Let in 10,000 Syrians who will get free coverage, and take the chance a few ISIS guys are in that bunch. VOTE REPUBLICAN to overturn our socialist government. What will my wife and I do, since we are self-employed? Raise our fees to our clients and stop non-essential spending such as retail purchases and dining out. Who will be hurt? The poor that this ACA was supposed to help because they will be laid off when the economy tanks.

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Steve December 11

Amen! I’m canceling insurance for my family so we will be without in 2016. I’m done with the games and the BS! You can’t force me to do anything. I’ll save the money each month what is comfortable for me to save and will pay out of pocket for my kids. The med centers with nurse practitioners at walgreens and cvs are great and it’s average $45 a visit! FU Obama, you terrorist! I have NEVER put the word president before his name. Let them tax me like the commy he is for not having insurance. I will find other ways to make up the difference! We can play games too.

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Tina November 19

I received a letter from Blue Cross (my provider) last week informing me they no longer offer a PPO plan for individual plans and would be put into an Bronze HMO plan. I reviewed the plan and it pays nothing until I meet my deductible of $4,000. Of course the premium for my husband and I is $1,200 per month……for what appears to be nothing as we use Sav-on for our prescription coverage.
In the same week I received a letter from my Neurologist at UT Southwestern stating they would no longer accept any insurance on the Affordable Care Exchange. I have Multiple Sclerosis and the only doctor I really must have is my Neurologist, which has been treating me for 12 years.
My brother is an insurance agent and I informed him, I will be canceling my policy so I can afford to pay my doctor bills. He agrees and tells me things that make my stomach turn, like the insurance providers were promised a refund of sorts at year end for number of enrollees. Our government promised something like 40% of and not is saying it will be 5%. No wonder the premiums rose….our Government is CORRUPT.
I am disabled, my husband is self employed and we do the best we can but our Government is hell bent on destroying our way of life. We don’t have a lot but we GET BY…..OR DID.

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Lynda October 30

Lynda Husband passed away Aug 2015, his employer took our insurance away the day he would have turned 65 jan. 1st 2015 ,after 35 years of employment. we had a 12 year old at the time of his death. Thank You Sunoco !! That was not in the plan , my parents that are 90 are still covered by company. Now I pay 998.00 a month for insurance for myself and my daughter. Increase notice for Jan. 2017 will be $1.298 dollars a month . I as a widow /single mother who was unpaid caregiver to my husband prior to his death and have not worked for 13 years raising our daughter and 57 years old can’t find work. First time in my life I will probably not get insurance for myself and just get good plan for my daughter she has severe asthma and allergies with medicine being high even with insurance. All I can do is PRAY that I don;t get sick. Scary with the constant stress due to loosing my husband. Penalty ???? Scary not knowing . ONLY HOPE TRUMP SCARY AGAIN BUT TRUE !!

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Mikel N. Toledo-Ohio November 12

We have been a few years into this “Obama Scare” thing. Now what has happened to me personally, is that I had to buy an expensive plan from a website. I could not afford the premium, the deductible, meds, the actual bills and then co-pays. That was within the US Government system website that they call “Marketplace.” I actually got a job where the insurance premiums are included, as a service to it’s employees. I had issues before I knew could never be dealt with, due to Gov’t insurance mandated costs. These costs were much higher than I had on any self purchased insurances. I am noticing fewer companies in 2015, than were in existence earlier. Prices are going up too for co-pays, meds and tests. Face it folks, the cost never went down. We were even told be one political group that this “was a tax” and was unconstitutional. Yet to this date, nobody had sued the US Government, overturned any parts of any of this Obama Scare law, or even made a direct challenge to this set of laws. The IRS is still collecting on insurance dodgers. Nobody had lifted a finger for the American people. Many know this is too expensive for almost all Americans. The only people it actually helps is the poor, who have little resources for insurance and medical care. We had things in place prior to this law. Take Lucas County (Toledo), Ohio’s CareNet. It was a discount program provided by the county medical providers, volunteer doctors, and social working resources. For a while, I was on it. Now that great program to get deep discounted medical, deep discounted meds and have a social worker overlook cases is gone. What extra costs came from the program were a tax write off. Great program… but Obama took it away from us who utilized it. Now we all pay more. Obama Scare was not a good option and is hurting America’s economy in many ways. Hiring part-time workers is just one way. Thanks Obama.

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Tyler November 11

is against the law to force people to get health insurance if they don’t want it and what happened to the land of the free??

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hmm December 16

it became the land of the greed.

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Debbie August 2

Most everyone did not research the documents that were out there on ObamaCare, they listened to the speeches, but wasn’t paying attention to what was really being said between the lines. Government and our President deceived the people they are suppose to be working to help. IRS should never been allowed to have anything to do with Insurance. The IRS and the insurance companies are raping the American People. Without insurance I can see a doctor for $90 a visit. With insurance that I can’t use because I haven’t reach my deductible (enough to buy a good used car), I have to pay $150.00 a visit.

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nursemom November 4

Doesn’t anyone wonder why the president, vice president, their families and all of our elected officials on Capital Hill are exempt from Obamacare? This in and of itself should have been a MAJOR red flag to the American people, even though we had NO say or choice in this matter. Most of the voting elected officials didn’t even read the thousands of pages of Obamacare! Why would they when it was not affecting them- and they are making WAY MORE in yearly income than any of the 2 parents/ person working households across the nation.

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Kate October 31

I’m a 21 year old senior in college, I don’t have my parents around because I’m estranged from them-very complicated issues that couldn’t be worked through. For the past 8 months I’ve been paying a premium(under $80) I can afford for a plan I got off of the health care website. While I’m in school 9 months out of the year, I only stay with my boyfriend and his family during breaks. So I don’t have a solid home. I saw some of the plans available, and on a student budget, what I’m seeing is close to $200 per month (or $178 per month at lowest). I’m feeling like I won’t be able to afford insurance because my plan is being discontinued. Will I be able to get any exemptions?

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ALICA December 11

My insurance has rose to almost $300 a month for 2016. I cannot afford that anymore. I was barely able to pay it before. So, for 2016 I won’t have any. I make just under $30000 a year. But I’m single and living on my own.

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Mary08 August 4

Yes, there is an exemption for ” homeless”

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Chris October 18

sorry I will not pay the tax that is forced opon us! I work for my money not to just give it away! It’s one thing to make me pay a tax for buying goods but for forcing me to pay a tax if i don’t have health care sorry you government have taken it to far! I understand you want people to have health insurence and to be coverd but again to force someone to pay a tax cause they don’t have it is wrong and and not right! I say go ahead and take my money for not paying i wouldn’t sign up for your health care if you payed me too! Also i think being forced to buy something like this is sociallist health care and will not fare at all for doing it! If you want to put me in jail for not paying my tax fee or something go ahead and do it! Cause I won’t want my kids growing up in this world we live in! Sorry if this affends any one but i can’t stand being forced to buy health care when i don’t have a job and can’t afford it

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Denise November 13

AMEN brother

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Steve December 11

AMEN! I have been preaching this forever! Unfortunately they will take it out of your tax return, which we rely on to live. There are other way I will make up that money. We can play this game as well. I can’t wait for the terrorist to be out of our whitehouse! Proud to say I NEVER voted for him!

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Maryellen October 15

Those figures are actually the “maximum” penalty per family. I don’t like the affordable care act but I like false information even less…..

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Andy (Author) October 25

I have both the individual and family penalty amounts listed. Please read the tables which clearly state individual vs family penalties. Not sure where you are getting “false” information form.

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Mel October 26

Hello, I am Native American. we have United Indian Health Services which my mother and siblings and me all go to at some point in time thru the year. How come this is not listed on the list of exemptions. I do NOT live on the reservation however we do have a home and property there and are listed tribal members of our tribe. Please respond if you can. AND, for the record i ABSOLUTELY HATE the fact they impose this on the American people, we should NOT be forced to buy anything, even car insurance (which is the biggest scam ever! they use a persons credit against them to determine rate premiums YET they DO NOT report monthly payments to the credit bureau? What kind of horsesh!t is that?? Its not like we can opt out of having that monthly so…they should be FORCED to report our payments!). i believe that being Native American should be listed, as generations have already been forced to live under certain conditions! way to go POTUS!

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karlee December 15

It wasn’t false, and you have to pay the higher of the two options. If 2.5% is higher that’s what you will pay. If you make 45K that penalty per person is $1125. With respect there are some “caps” but every year it goes higher and higher. This is an awful plan. Anyone who supports it does not understand how it really works.

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Christine March 12

not sure what year you are speaking of, or what year you posted here..The 2014 penalty was $95 PER month PER person; 2015 was $325 PER month PER person; and for 2016 it’s $695 PER month PER person…there is a 3 part worksheet to do (see IRS form i8965) that brings the monthly amounts down some. 9 months of no coverage for my husband and me in 2016 came to a fine of $1042 with total income of 62,530. The worksheets begin on page 15 at the attached link, and go through to the 20th page…

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Lisa October 14

My husband had health insurance on both of us through his employer. On October 1 he changed jobs, therefor, causing our insurance to expire. The new job requires a 90 day period before insurance kicks in. Will we have to pay a fee? It’s exactly 3 months without insurance.

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Jerrilee December 6

You shouldn’t have to, you should qualify for the exemption if I read it right.

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Victor September 16

I was working for myself and never acquired a health care coverage. I work in the oilfield and as you all know it went bust. So I was unemployed for several months. My wife enrolled us in Medicade and we now have that. I am back to work… Again working for myself as a owner operator driving my own tractor trailer. If I keep Medicade will I get penalized? Since I make pretty good money again. Can I keep Medicare while I’m self employed?

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Sandy October 15

Will I be fined if I get insurance by October.?

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Jerrilee December 6

Medicaid is based off income, if you are making over the cap for your household size and get caught you can be required to pay back money to Medicaid. Its a tricky game to play.

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jef December 14

State Medicaid is actually based on income AND assets. Assets like bank accounts, pension plans, etc.

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Chase Allspaugh September 7

If my 26 year old still lives at home and has never had a job does he have to pay fine? We missed his special enrollment (9/1/15) due to death in family out of state. Is there any way he could get excused and call 9/8 or 9/9/15 & gey excused to meet special enrollment oor will we havep wait til November 2015 open enrollment?

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lourdes November 2

if you don’t have a job and don’t file taxes you would not get penalized. you could call the marketplace 1-800 318-2596 and fill out an application when you get the part income you tell them you don’t work and they will give you a code that will exempt you from the fine

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Mike and Linda August 13

Also, members of a Healthcare Sharing Ministry are also exempt from the Obamacare mandate and penalties.

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Harold Mudgett July 15

Hi, if I’m getting a divorce but will still be married at the end of the year (we have had seperated addresses for over a year) and we file “married but seperated ” will I be liable for her penalty for not having health insurance all year? I do have health insurance for myself and my kids. Thanks

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karlee December 15

If you have insurance, you will not be penalized. Check the box you have insurance and you should be fine. FYI, you may want to double check the filing status. It’s married filing separate , as in separate returns or married filing a joing return. When you file separate returns you can both end up paying higher income tax. There is not filing status for “separated” couples.

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Connie July 13

Can I use my Hsa account in place of health insurance and if so, what is the minimum amount I need to fund iannually?

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Andy (Author) July 14

You can use your HSA funds for any approved medical expenses. However you can not pay your health insurance premiums via your HSA and you still need a health insurance plan to avoid the no coverage penalty.

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Weldon Underwood June 4

I had insurance through June with an employer. How much do I pay for the rest of the year and how do I show it on my tax forms?

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veah September 21

I’d like to know as well. Lost my job in job in june 2015. Haven’t had insurance since:-(

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karlee December 15

If the penalty is 1200 for the year, you would pay $100 (1/12) of that penalty for every month you were without insurance. There is sometimes a few options that may wave the penalty, but I am not up to speed on those options right now. Good Luck.

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Jenny Stacey May 5

My friend is an adult man who lives and takes care of his grandfather. His grandfather claims him as an adult dependent. He doe not work but he lives there for free and takes care of his poppop. With that said what can he do so his grandfather is not penalized under the no health insurance act. I mean his grand dad has insurance but the adult male cant afford it under the market place sense he really has no income. Any assist is helpful.

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Ben thruit October 9

He should qualify for Medicaid.

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Kathy March 8

that is exactly my situation with my adult son– For two years we have been bounced back and forth. Obamacare sends us to Medicaid…. the minute Medicaid finds out I declare him as an adult dependent they want to know MY income. and then they want to base premiums through Obamacare based on that –and I make too much money.. I have had to pay the penalty 2 yrs in a row — this year it was 2200 dollars. I’m so disgusted I don’t know what to do….

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Kathy March 8

that is exactly my situation with my adult son– For two years we have been bounced back and forth. Obamacare sends us to Medicaid…. the minute Medicaid finds out I declare him as an adult dependent they want to know MY income. and then they want to base premiums through Obamacare based on that –and I make too much money.. I have had to pay the penalty 2 yrs in a row — this year it was 2200 dollars. I’m so disgusted I don’t know what to do….

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Joyce April 8

I had a gap in coverage for 2014 due to operational/training/technical difficulties at the WA state health exchange. I was one of the lucky ones who was processed in only 2 1/2 months. According to someone who knows, for many it took up to 6 mos. I have been looking but don’t find an exemption code or category for this type of exception. Andy, what do you know about this? Technical difficulties at the state exchange that kept me from enrolling in a timely manner? The folks who talk to you at http://www.healthcare.gov told me I have to apply for an exemption from the state exchange only; the WASHE told me only the federal exchange at http://www.healthcare.gov can grant exemptions??

Thanks.

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Brandon April 1

Is this per months or just a flat fee for the year?

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Andy (Author) November 28

the penalty is for the full year, but is assessed on a monthly basis. Ie if you have coverage for 5 months, your penalty would be for the 7/12 of total penalty (for 7 months you didn’t have coverage)

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good March 31

For one reason, I can’t see all of this blog, it keeps disappearing? Are you using javascript?

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sonors March 28

Do not pay the penalty. The law is written so they can NOT charge you criminally and can NOT put a lien on you for the amount not paid. The only way they can collect is to subtract the penalty you owe from any refund or future refund you might get. Also, many people will get subsidies and wind up paying almost nothing for their policy. The subsidies are huge. $7-8 thousand a year. I do not see how this law can survive without imploding. The more lower income people that apply on the exchange, the more it is going to cost the government. The subsidies go from the federal government(taxpayers) straight to insurance companies.

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Steve December 11

this really sux for those, like me, who rely on the tax money that comes back at the end of the year. My family relies on that to live on. Maybe I should claim a crazy high amount to get more each paycheck, so I wind up paying more, then if I need to pay, I will pay what I owe and never the tax on this BS so called coverage!

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Help March 25

what is the cutoff date to enroll into the health reform act

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Otax Protestor March 21

One of the ways to legally circumvent the ACA health penalty is claiming Domestic Abuse. This is the only exemption for which no paperwork or proof needs to be submitted. I wonder what happens if everyone who is liable to pay penalty under ACA, claims this same reason of domestic violence and does not pay the ocare tax. What would the consequences be?

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Sara March 17

Here’s what happens to the unemployed: for most of us, we can’t afford to pay for any coverage while we are trying to keep a roof over our heads and food on the tables. Later in the year we may find jobs, with or without insurance. But because our requirements to purchase insurance are determined by our annual incomes, if we go for more than 3 months without coverage we are subject to the fines if we do become employed . I guess the administration feels it’s better to let our mortgages go into default and pay for useless coverage than trying to keep a home and family together. It’s our Patriotic duty to become homeless!

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TTS April 6

If you’re unemployed and you’re receiving ‘unemployment income’, you will likely receive a federal subsidy (tax credit) to offset 75-95% of the cost of your health insurance through healthcare.gov or your particular State Exchange. If you’re unemployed and receiving NO ‘unemployment income’, you can enroll onto Medicaid very easily if your state is one of the states that has accepted Medicaid Expansion like KY, CA, AZ, AR, CO, MN, (plus many others). At the very least Medicaid is a very good stop gap, costs nothing, and has very little or no out-of-pocket should you have a claim.

Both scenarios above will preclude you from paying any tax penalty.

If your home state is one like TX or MS or FL or KS or TN, etc … then Medicaid likely isn’t available to you (or MUCH more difficult to get) because states like these have not accepted the Medicaid Expansion; therefore, you indeed may remain uninsured and find yourself on the hook for the tax penalty. Keep in mind that there’s an exemption from the penalty if the cost of health insurance exceeds 8% of your annual income. If one is unemployed, it’s very likely that this 8% thresh hold will come into play and you will not find yourself paying any penalty.

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Dennis February 17

They didn’t ” accept it” because it is a similar drain on tax payers. I’d rather the country pay for the healthcare of the truly indigent and needy, rather than those that just don’t work. If you decide to stay unemployed, Why should I be mandated to pay tax premiums from my income, to pay for your choice..

Having and depending on a government to run your life, is like a dog chasing his tail.

BTW, Medicaid cost nothing?? who do you think pays for this?? The medicaid rolls have skyrocketed after Ocare, along with many other government subsidies (food stamps). The price is much higher than the mandated Tax we pay for HCA folks.

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Steve December 11

Sara,
you got it! A president looks out for the best interest of their people. this BS tax certainly does not! It destroys the middle class from the inside. Many doctors will not accept this BS so the “you can keep your doctor” doesn’t even work. I am choosing to put food on the table for my family. This has become a double car payment tax. I will take the penalty and play the game just as well as they can to make up the difference. I’ve been looking forward to this terrorist getting out of our whitehouse since day one!

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karlee December 15

I am very sorry. The ACA was not written with real people in mind. It was numbers and statistics. Real families, with budgets, and real life (illness, changes in employment and so forth)
are being placed into poverty and have NO coverage. Gone are the old policies we could keep, or even the opportunity to pay for our own medical expenses. Now we must pay and/or be penalized for not paying and we still have no coverage.

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Kim March 9

We had health insurance but it only covered up to $100,000. Lost coverage. Family of 3. Make less than 30K a year. Yearly premium with $9K deductible is $7332 a year. How can I make my house payment if I have health insurance? DO NOT qualify for medicaid. Your are a genius King Putt. These numbers don’t add up to prosperity.

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Rocco March 2

Holy shit what happened to us? Not one positive comment. We have to remind the people who serve us that we pay are crippling us. I can’t afford 2% or $325. Whata joke. Just call it a god dam tax why we need fancy names Ocare n Affordable care. I can’t afford nothing now I’m out $300+. Obamatax not obamacare

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Mark February 28

I can’t even get a 1095-a form . Obama heath people has screwed up my account that they can’t even fix it. All I get from them is we are sorry. This is nothing but bullshit.

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mark September 19

This is illegal allowing this government to force Americans to purchase anything and causing us to suffer financial hardship. This is the result of a under taxed greedy industry using the higher powers of office to force americans to guarantee financial benefit to these crooks. This is a felony to the highest level and this supreme court is just as corrupt for enforcing . This is the first true act of socialism/communisum enforcement. These people are not fit to serve and should be removed from the supreme court and Obama should go to prison. What are these corrupt people going to enforce next, you have to buy a car, a house? Where does it end if this B S law continues. We are a free people and we have the right to choose what we want to purchase and not to be ruled by some corporate dictatorship. We don’t have to work in America it’s a choice. I’m not going to pay for something I don’t want and that’s my right and we didn’t for vote a dictatorship, but this is what we got. That’s why we need to fight against this government corruption and demand that we choose in this country what we want to pay for and not what a dictator tells us to purchase then steal our entitled refund we worked so hard for from these slave wages since this criminal government never enforced a proper living wage so that we could afford a greedy medical insurance plan. I think insurance companies should give refunds each year when insurance wasn’t used. Same with auto, home, ect.

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mary January 12

Well, said, Mark!

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jason knotts February 21

What I want to know is, how can I fight against this bullshit penalty I have to pay for not having health insurance? Is this not unconstitutional? I purposely live a healthy lifestyle so I don’t have to pay for insurance, I buy good quality food, which costs more, so that I can be healthy on my own. I feel like this is all just wrong.

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Pamela March 25

Do you consider auto insurance bad? Even if you keep your car washed, oil changed, lubed,
and good brakes? It makes no difference how well you care for your car if you happen to be hit by a reckless driver or a pile up on the freeway…..and if you happen to be unfortunate and are injured, who will pay the hospital bills?
Insurance covers “unknown or unpredictable situations”. And if your hospital bills go unpaid,
all premiums rise, and everyone is dinged a little because one person failed to follow the law.

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don April 28

I have a choice of driving. I have no choice of breathing.

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DMan September 6

This is like someone not owning a car and still having to pay for car insurance?? Because somebody might hit there car they don’t even own because they assume that will happen…

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Courtney November 10

^exactly!!

Steve December 11

This is exactly what I said yesterday! Forcing me to pay for motorcycle insurance when I don’t have a bike and don’t ride one! So what’s the problem here! I take care of my own and I don’t want to sound like I’m not for the people because I am, but I refuse to aid those who are here illegally! I refuse to pay for insurance because I need a house and food for my family. I will be canceling end of 2015 unfortunately. I will pay the fine but will find ways to make up the difference. We can play this game as well. I will also be changing the amount I claim on my taxes so I get more back on every paycheck! This will pay me back much less at tax time but that means they can’t take the fine from me. By law they cannot take legal action against you but they can take from your tax return.

Jess December 5

When you have to pay more for your health insurance, than your house payment that really sucks. They say it’s affordable, but if you have a $6000 deductable, and your paying $105 a month , you might as well say your paying $650 a month, and it doesn’t pay for anything , till you pay that $6000.I guess they think we’re all stupid. Well I guess there are some who voted for king Obama our dictator.

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Kimberly July 8

I hear you Jason, I feel exactly the same way, I choose my lifestyle, I choose not to be medicated, hacked on, and medical `regimented to live, Isn’t that what makes America America? Freedom of Choice?
besides the fact, a insurance primium at my age is over 600.00 a month, sorry I don’t have that kind of spare change laying around I’m single always have been independent, have a morgage, pay a car loan, insurance on both that is required by law and I don’t mind that, I pay my utilities on my own and feed myself,have pets, and yes, I have credit cards for some leisure spending. Shame on me for taking care of myself.

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Laura November 19

I agree w you. I’m self employed and my premium skyrocketed from $348 – 500 + next year. I can put the cost of my premiums which will be equal to my $6,000 deductible in an HSA account and take the penalty and still be ahead of the game.

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carl July 12

They need your money to pay for all of the people who made poor choices in their lives such as alcoholics, drug abusers, red meat and sugar addicts. And most of these obese people are low income so YOU are paying for their subsidy. This is socialism where bad behaviors are rewarded and responsible individuals are punished. Welcome to the new America!

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Jeff August 28

How wonderful for you Jason to know that you will never get sick ! I bet you’re such a fantastic driver that you won’t even get in a crash either? So you don’t need car insurance then. Great ! I just have a question – do you actually think it would be acceptable to just ‘let you die a horrible a slow death’ if anything happens to you and your medical bills will be $400,000? If you think that is acceptable, hey, because you’re ‘free’, then you are lying.

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alejo February 21

This is crap my father was just told he has to pay more than $5000.00 dollars in taxes because of this crazy mandate- Obama care! can anyone please help me understand why??

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D. Starnes February 21

My adult son lives with us. He has never been employed and has no income of his own. Because we supply all of his support we count him as a dependent on our taxes. Do we have to pay a penalty for him not having health insurance? My husband is retired, draws social security, and is insured. I have insurance through my job. We can’t afford insurance for our son. If we have to pay for him not being insured, maybe it’s best we just don’t put him on our tax return. This is all such a mess..

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miriam smith March 9

We have been supporting our adult daughter, age 33, while she attended graduate school in another state. She completed her studies in June ’14 and is currently looking for a job. Meanwhile, we are still supporting her since she has no other income and hasn’t since 2013 in graduate school. According to information we’ve read, our daughter would be a qualifying relative and therefore, we could claim her on our taxes. She is also exempt from the Affordable Care insurance in the state of Georgia where she continued to reside since graduation. We live in South Carolina. If we claim our daughter, are we going to be penalized?

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TTS April 6

You may want to leave him off of your taxes. He likely will not file a tax return … I assume. Anyone who is not required to file is exempted from any penalty.

Further, if you’re in a state that has accepted the Medicaid Expansion your son should be able to enroll onto Medicaid at no cost. So, he then has health insurance AND is on a qualified plan.

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Kenneth February 20

I carry health insurance for myself, my children, and my estranged wife through my employer plan. My (ex) wife and I file taxes separately. How will she show her coverage or how will the IRS verify her coverage and how will this affect my taxes?

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Concerned April 9

Nobody mentioned that the penalty as of 2014 was 1% tax penalty of your overall gross income that we had to pay for no insurance, Then for 2015 it went up to a 2% tax penalty and now it’s going up to a 2.5% penalty. When will the hikes stop. Offering Insurance to everyone was suppose to help us not put us in more debt as a people. Not to mention the skyrocketing cost of healthcare keeps increasing as well…It’s f_ #cking unbelievable how we’er getting ripped-off even more. Heath care should be a choice to have and the government should be helping us get the insurance at a lesser cost not dangling the carrot and and taking it away something else if you cannot afford it. BAIT N SWITCH situation to the max. The gov’t needs to stay out of the personal affairs of the US people and honor our somewhat rights that we have left and allow us to decide to get insurance as an as needed basis. It’s just another way Obama is getting back all the wasted money that were overpaying for contract screw ball deals and special interest for all kinds of unneeded crap that the the lower to middle class is paying and we still get more and more, deeper and deeper in debt. How brilliant! This new healthcare rule sucks…. and it NEEDS THE SUPPORT OF A REPEAL before it’s too late…….Bernie Sanders is right!!…

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Taka February 18

Hello, I have a question. My wife and I has insurance which we pay our self and get subsidy. I’m going to get insurance form company on May. This is very good for us because price is way going down. Question is My wife is going to visit her country for 2 months, and I am thinking to cancel her insurance which we are paying now because we can save some money. If I just cancel her insurance for 2 months, still we get penalty? She is not citizen, just green card, but we get subsidy. Is there any way to contact with government for excuse about this? Please give me a advice. Thank you.

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Jasmin February 17

I am 29 years old and live with my dad, but he didn’t have insurance during 2014. When I input that information on my tax form I was penalized. I thought only the individual who didn’t have insurance was to be penalized?

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null February 17

Relax, everyone is now exempt from the Obamacare Penalty and mandate to get covered. Until 2017 arrives, I would not touch upon this. There is to be a hearing in 2017 that may gut the plan, update it or kill it completely. If you’re an adult, not covered and are being pressured by others about it, IGNORE IT. You have 2 years time to chill until a final decision is made about it. If they end up killing it and you already applied, you’re gonna get stuck in one of their loop holes and have to owe for the next decade. So I implore you folks, if you didn’t do anything yet, LEAVE IT LIKE THAT. 2 years time… let’s see what happens.

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Sooshi February 18

Where can I get definitive information that everyone is exempt from the Obamacare Penalty until 2017? That sure would bring me some relief, but I need to know that it is true.

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Andy (Author) February 19

Sorry Sooshi. This is not a valid comment from Null. I.e everyone is NOT exempt from Obamacare penalty. You would still owe it for 2014 if you did not have qualifying insurance.

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Kim March 9

Well Null the interactive tax forms don’t support your theory.

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Kimberly July 8

My CPA automatically deducted over 300.00 from my tax return and acted like shame you for not having insurance, I didn’t even get a chance to fight it. I was like what ever, take it.

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Kimgalex February 12

“The only way that they can collect the penalty or the fine is by taking money from your refund. If you are not owed a refund, they cannot get money from you.”
If you don’t get a refund next year, the “IRS could carry over the sum due and apply it against any refunds in future years. On a joint return, the penalty of one joint filer could be applied against the refund due to the other joint filer”
“If you don’t pay it, all they can do is wait until they owe you some money and take that. Or probably just send you a letter every now and then reminding you that you owe money to the IRS,”
And by the way, once the IRS assesses the penalty, they’ve got 10 years to collect.
Anyone can verify this information themselves. It is even on the Obamacare website. Why is this not mentioned in your article? I am not owed a refund and I am not going to pay the penalty either! I would rather owe the IRS forever than cheat them out of it.

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Gin February 28

@Kimgalex
I had the same exact thought but it didn’t work out that way! This is what happened to us. We owed the IRS a small amount this year and I wanted to pay the tax we owed but not the penalty for not having insurance. The IRS counts the “fine” as “other tax” on their forms and groups the 2 amounts together! The voucher printed out for me to pay the tax and fine are totaled together. If you send in just the “tax” amount you owe, they pay the “fine” first so it means you underpaid you taxes and the IRS starts adding interest and late fees until paid in full! I was NOT going to pay this bogus “fine” but have no choice unless I want to add interest and late fees to my actual taxes. The IRS knew nobody would pay if they kept it separate so even though this is America, you have no way to protest by not paying. Insurance cost are off the chain and I refuse to pay for it. The “fines” stink but are way cheaper then the $800.00 a month for sub-par coverage. My husband and I had to wrap our minds around it and just pretend we are now in a higher tax bracket to not have our heads explode!

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Rick September 17

Gin from what you are saying is the way to get around the penalty is to structure your ytaxes so they owe you money a

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Rick September 17

Gin from what you are learned when you did your taxes in your reply to Kimgalex, do you think the way to get around the penalty is to try and structure your taxes so they owe you a small refund then they will take that and apply it to their theft?

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jEFf February 11

I, like many others, was forced to purchase health coverage because of Obama Care. Previously, I paid for all medical out of pocket at a greatly reduced rate. Now that I have health care insurance which requires a $400/month premium, I pay upwards of 3x the amount for the same services ON TOP of the premium. Case in point, I need to get an MRI on my shoulder. My price WITH insurance $1845. That’s what I have to pay outside of coverage. I called the facility and pretended I didn’t have insurance and asked the cost of the same MRI procedure… Cash price without insurance, $545…
So, I now pay almost $5,000/year for insurance which increases my out of pocket expenditures 3 fold. Thanks Obama and stupid socialists everywhere!

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Andy (Author) February 11

Why don’t you just pay the $95 penalty in that case? Much cheaper than the $5,000 you pay now and the higher medical bills.

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Mark February 15

Because it’s 95 dollars or a percentage of income whichever is higher. one percent for 2014, 2 percent for 2015, 2.5 percent for 2016. It’s 695 dollars or the percentage, whichever is higher starting in 2016 and beyond. I can buy a catastrophic insurance policy outside of ocare which is not ocare compliant to cap my out of pocket at 10,000 dollars for 60 dollars per month. Ocare would cost me 420 per month with 6300 out of pocket and is useless for anything other than a major event. It’s less costly to just pay the penalty and buy a 2 million dollar policy than pay for the ripoff ocare welfare plan that subsidizes everyone else at a large expense. We need to go to a market based insurance similar to what we have before ocare but with greater competition to lower cost. Insurance should be only for major expense to protect against bankruptcy, not for everyday expenses. Anyone with preexisting conditons should be able to buy a catastrophic plan that covers every major event other than their current condition which could be covered based on income via some pool of tax money. The entire health insurance industry was turned upside down to cover a few million people at much greater cost. Insurance or medicaid are not the same as health care. The insurance makes the cost of everything more and does not help with the health care problem in this country. If all everyday things were paid for out of pocket, the costs would go way down due to competition and the free market. Providers would be forced to advertise prices and compete for business driving the cost down.

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jrj90620 November 13

Mark,You’re the man.Best post,out of hundreds read.

Steve December 11

AMEN. I’m CANCELING insurance end of this year 2015 for my family. I have no choice. I don’t have the money especially when dr. visits won’t be covered until we reach a $6000 deductible. I’ll pay out of pocket.

Robert Wayne February 21

I agree with you 100% Jeff. We can thank Ocrappo and the stupid morons who voted for him for this crappola. Hopefully, we’ll get a decent Tea Party candidate in the White House in 2016 who’ll put a stop to this mess.

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John February 24

I agree. This is rediculous and it should be my decision to not have health insurance. I also pay out of pocket and save in the long run. Why should we have to pay? Just because the government says!!! I’m better off just paying the fines because it is still cheaper than what i’m having to pay out of pocket and premiums. Dang!!!! I’m already getting taxed on my last year tax returns (1099) from state and federal. When is someone going to do something about that? How can all this be legal because of ” Congress’ Interpretation of The Law”?

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Rafael Arce February 10

I was employed up to July of 2014 but I was covered with health insurance till the end of July 2014. My husband’s employer does not offer Heath insurance thus he was under my health coverage. My question is… Are we going both going to be penalized for not being covered for the remaining 5month? If so how much? Is it $95 or $500dlrs.

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Gin February 28

@Rafael Arce
We were covered until the end of May so the penalty was prorated. We paid a prorated penalty for the remaining months and it was more than double the $95.00 for each of us. It really stinks!

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Jackie February 10

Retired at age 62.. No insurance till I started getting Medicare at age 65. Signed up for Medicare April 1 2014 to be effective July 1st for my birthday month of age 65. You have to sign up 3 months before your birthday month. Will I be penalized for 2014? Thank you.

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Emily February 9

My grandson has not had insurance since Nov. 2014. Not that we haven’t been trying. We filed for medicaid but this worker told my daughter to take him to a free clinic. He is only 4 years old. I am so upset! What do we do now? My daughter is working but is still low income.
A worried Nana

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CGold February 6

I have health insurance and had it for the entire year of 2014. My husband did not have insurance for 2014. How will we be penalized? Will they count both of our incomes for the 1% fee? Or will they strictly take his income into consideration. We are married filing jointly.

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jeff February 5

I was unemployed most of 2014, so therefore unable to afford health insurance. I am being pentalized $95. Is this penalty for $95 for the year, or per month?

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Valerie February 11

The $95 is for the entire year. That is your full penalty.

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M. Phillips February 14

If you are under 65 and your income was less than $10,150 you are exempt.

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Steve December 11

And that’s a FN joke! Under $10k! So everyone with a family is FD! I’m not paying these taxes for no coverage. I’m paying the fine. I wouldn’t take this crap “insurance” if they paid me. Most doctors are dropping it anyway.

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tammy February 4

I get state medical card, since lost mu job a yr ago i have a prt x job but id make enuff to buy insurance, does the state send proof if that to u or IRS

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Andy (Author) February 4

You need to provide proof to the IRS. But the IRS will also recieve info from providers/states to verify and audit the information they receive

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Lore February 2

If I have had insurance for six months, do I have to pay the penalty?

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Valerie February 11

Yes, it is prorated. You will pay penalty on only the six months you were not covered.

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Kristi February 1

Hello, My cousin doesn’t work, she takes care of her 2 young kids. She can’t afford to pay for insurance. She’s afraid if her boyfriend claims her on his taxes he will have to pay the 1% of his income as a penalty because she is uninsured. Is this true or would the penalty be 1% of her income which is nothing. They live in Ohio. Thanks!

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Dana February 8

I lost my job in 2012 and have not been able to find a new one. I live with my boyfriend so I have a roof over my head. I have to sell my personal items just to make enough money to pay for my medications. He does not pay for any of my personal needs. However since he claims me as a dependent he had to pay a penalty of almost $500 because I can’t afford insurance.
How is this fair to anyone?

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Lee February 16

i don’t get your logic

he should not claim you as a dependent if he is not taking care of you — it’s that simple!

he basically wants to get all the tax benefit of claiming you with none of the obligations…. how is THAT fair?

if he ends up owing more money due to your lack of coverage, he should simply not claim you. if he still comes out on top, he should still claim. it’s a simple calculation he can make. but don’t say it’s unfair, if anything he is abusing the system by claiming you as a dependent, getting a tax break, and not actually supporting you…

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Lisa March 7

If she has no income, he is supporting her. She just buys her personal needs. But rent, utilities, food? If he provides half of all that, then he can legally claim her as a dependent. He isn’t abusing the system.

Teresa January 31

I am a 63 year old widow, live alone, draw social security benefits, and have a small savings which draws interest. I have been paying over $400.00 monthly for insurance and have now been notified by the Ins. co. that I do not have sufficient coverage and will need to get a new policy. My question is: Can I get Obama care, if my income is low enough that I am not required to file income tax. If so, Will I need to file a tax form to show my income?

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Todd S January 30

Obama Care is such a joke. It is amazing what are government keeps getting away with, while us low or middle income people have NO say in anything. Health Care should either be a option, given to us for free or they should use some of the extreme amount of money, that they take from our taxes. Obama and any other person that thinks its ok to force us to pay ( or fine us)for something we can’t afford, can go fuck them selves. I love how the laws are writen by the rich, for the rich, so that they can get richer. While us poor folks have no control or voice over the situation. I would rather be dead then ever put support this bullshit.

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Dana February 8

AMEN!

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marinda taylor February 10

we need to stand up this is more hurtful for poor families than good i hate obama

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Robert Wayne February 21

You took the words right out of my mouth Todd. The hate I have for Obama is the same as I would have for a thief who broke into my house and stole my belongings. They’re one and the same.

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Prisca February 23

It is certainly hurting the middle class not helping. I live each day wondering how I will pay for my next meal yet my government is now going to force me to pay a penalty because I can’t afford his lousy health insurance coverage. Its not about making health insurance affordable–it’s about control. Slowly but surely they are taking away our freedom of choice. Just look at what they are now talking about with regards to meat eaters. It’s bullshit. It’s all about control but what do people expect when they put a Muslim in the WhiteHouse. Before long they will have us under Sharia Law.

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Walter November 5

I was covered in 2014 because with subsidies I was forking out only $27 a month and the government was pitching in $475 every month. At the close of the year my insurance company notified me that my policy would no longer be offered the following year. It was a Silver plan and it was a gem. Office visits no charge. All blood tests and x-rays were no charge due to the fact that
they were done in the doctors office. After surveying the available plans for 2015 I decided not to participate because my deductible went from $3200 to $9000 and I had to meet the deductible before anything was covered. Plus my monthly cost went from $27 to $140. I paid for office visits and tests with my family doctor and got a steep discount. Plus the government didn’t have to fork over $450 in subsidies every month. The way I see it I saved the government $5400 in tax payer money. Why then do they want to penalize me for saving them $5400? I wont pay it ( penalty ) and truly hope Obamacare is scrapped . I live on Social Security and find that every dollar is precious and needed for food, taxes, medicine etc….. What is works out to is I would be paying the equivalent of $10680 per year out of my pocket before insurance even kicked in. A sorry state of affairs.

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Steve December 11

I am not in politics and never expressed an interest in it. I have thought of running for president because I would really clean things up. That is my promise! I don’t care about fame or any of the BS that goes with it. I wouldn’t take crazy trips or spend thousands on crap! I would stop foreign spending and start at home! I would take care of us! This is insane. I am responsible. I would make it work I promise! I just don’t have the money or the funds. I have a youtube channel and a podcast on iTunes, which is called ROTTER RANT. I feel bad ranting as bad as I do but reading these comments, it’s what I rant about mostly. This needs to stop. Someone needs to step up. It’s not even being hidden…it’s right before our eyes insane! Crazy increases for nothing! They wont’ even pay for doctor visits on a ppo unless you met your $6000 deductible! I’m forgoing insurance as of 12/31/2015 and taking the penalty. I will also claim more on my form for dependents with HR, which is legal to do, so I get more back each paycheck! I’ll play the game.

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Meka January 30

I had Blue Cross of MS from Jan. 2014-April 2014 after leaving a job I was dropped. Went to another job no insurance and then job was terminated and picked up by another company which offered insurance in Sept. 2014. I didn’t get the medical but got the dental. What will I be penalized when filing my income tax?

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she7rise January 30

I was working on taxes and my Husband has insurance with his job I’m unemployed so we are getting penalized $285 he has insurance I checked Obama care $870 a month with 12,000 deductible how am I supposed to feed my children sick of it

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Genie Dorsey January 27

My husband had insurance through his employee ( which we only change enrollment if there is a life changing event) My Son and I were on Medicaid for 1 yr from his birth which was in november (2013), so it stopped in november 2014, and we didn’t qualify to continue and my son and Iosing health insurance for the last month or month and a half of year and this is not seen as a life changing event to be put on my husbands ( for this year we enrolled on his which of course wouldn’t start til the beginning of 2015 and niether would obamacare); SO! Would we still incur a penalty for the one month?

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Andy (Author) January 27

Actually one of the penalty exemptions you can claim is due to the reason “being uninsured for less than 3 months of the year”. You don’t actually have to apply for this exemption and is handled via your tax return.

You may also be able to claim a hardship exemption due to your Medicaid situation. You can apply for this by filling out an exemption application form (link to healthcare.gov)

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Tiffany January 27

Ok, I have a unique situation. I’ve been unemployed for about 18 months, with no luck of finding work. me and my boyfriend Live together and since I didn’t work all last year, he is able to claim me as a dependent. I’m not filing a return. Now, I keep seeing that if your health insurance is more than 8% of your income, your exempt. My boyfriend has insurance through his employer, and his policy alone is 11% of his annual income. Are we exempt from the penalty? The state we live, south carolina, didn’t utilize the medicaid expansion for ACA Either. Since our state didnt expand, ACA offered the lowest quote to me 212 a month. We can’t afford that every month. since he already pays 11% of his income just to his insurance alone, would he be held liable for the tax penalty since I’m still currently uninsured?

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Andy (Author) January 27

You may be able to qualify for an exemption (see the last part of my article) due to your low income. If your income will be low enough that you won’t be required to file taxes (see thresholds in this article). you don’t need to apply for an exemption. This is true even if you file a return in order to get a refund of money withheld from your paycheck. You won’t have to pay the fee for not being covered.

There is also a hardship exemption you may quality for – “You were determined ineligible for Medicaid because your state didn’t expand eligibility for Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. . You can apply for this by filling out an exemption application form at healthcare.gov (see the comment above (from Genie) that has the link).

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Dana February 8

My boyfriend has already filed his taxes and paid a penalty of almost $500 since I am not insured. I will not be filing taxes since I am unemployed and have no money.
How can he get this money back? He should not have to pay a penalty just because he has provided me with shelter.

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Dana February 8

Same problem here. My boyfriend had to pay a $500 penalty because I can’t afford insurance. Tennessee didn’t utilize the medicaid expansion either.
This is all a bunch of bullcrap!

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katie January 24

If I had coverage for the whole year but my husband was not covered how does the penalty work?

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Jenny January 24

He will pay at the individual rate ($95 for the year)

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Dana February 8

If he is claimed as a dependent on your taxes the penalty will be 1% of your income or $95 whichever is highest.
Also these penalty rates go up every year.

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Rachel January 21

I switched jobs twice in 2014. For each job, I had a 30 day waiting period for coverage. Technically I was not insured for the month of September and December. This is not listed as any of the options for exemption. My question is: was I technically covered by Cobra? You can opt to use it within 60 days without having to pay the first premium. Theoretically, I was covered by it, meaning i could have used it in those months and paid the premium and been fine, but since I did not use it, I did not pay it. Does that count??

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Claire January 20

is the penalty $95, per month or year?

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Andy (Author) January 20

$95 for the year!

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Claire January 20

if wife is not working and she is the only one getting from marketplace, while husband has insurance from work…where will they based the 1% of income?

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Claire January 21

this is assuming that wife decides to stop getting insurance from marketplace after 4 months?

Dana February 8

It is based on the income that you file on your taxes.

hayley February 3

I was charged 95 a month

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Andy (Author) February 4

Then you were overcharged!

Jeff February 5

Are you sure it is for the year? My return was accepted by the IRS on January 28th, and I expected my return on February 4th, and I didn’t receive it, so now I’m worried.

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Margie January 19

I’m still very angry that the government tells me that I HAVE to have insurance.

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Lisa February 3

I agree Margie. Our free country has turned into a NOT FREE country. They are just using this money to help with the countries debt. It is OUR choice to be insured!!! This makes me mad. My son couldn’t afford health insurance, they don’t take into acct our reg bills. But he is going to get fined for not having insurance because somehow he made enough. He lives with us because HE DOESNT MAKE ENOUGH TO LIVE ON HIS OWN> Where is that da#m box to check on tax form…. !#%!^@^$@&%

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Tabby February 9

No they are Not using the money for the country’s debt (it’s not being paid), they’re using it to pay the subsidies to people with higher income than You. Because some of you are dependants of tax payers, their tax/income is considered yours. They don’t care if your boyfriends already pay for insurance with his income, they consider all his income to be yours. Its double dipping, which our government is good at. They are the biggest frauds/scam artist of all.

I had no income until I moved in with my husband (married July 2014). I have to pay a $500 fine for no insurance because his income is considered mine. I was not eligible for his employer insurance until we were married. I couldn’t buy it until we were married. But we didn’t know I could sign up right away and thought I had to wait til January. Now we see others get exemptions for no income for 12 full months, while others are exempt from a fee for 3 months. It seems I should be exempt for the 7 months of no income if others are, but nope… it’s all so disgusting.

We can’t afford our own, but sure let’s pay a fine to pay others. How many people were hired to be paid by tax dollars to take our fees, and redistribute them? we are being robbed to create false job growth, false economy improvements, and give obama a false sense of achievement. Only the US government would Rob you blind and expect you to thank them. Obama and his groupies/ liberals are the worst kind of criminal.

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Lee February 16

ya, you’re right!
how about the govt FORCING me to have car insurance
total BS right
cause a car accident is definitely a lot likelier than getting sick

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Pat July 26

Yea, like someone said earlier, you don’t have to drive, but you do have to breathe !!!

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scott March 9

i called for my form over 7 days and have not seen mine yet eaither the 1095. this obama care will kill the low income. not dought our financial future could be over. i agree this law going hurt many.

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John January 19

I have a health insurance thru my employer that covers my family and I. But my parents live with me and do not have health insurance. They don’t have any income, zero. If I claim them as dependent on my 2014 tax return, can I get the Health Coverage Exemption for them, or do I have to pay a penalty for not getting health coverage for them in 2014?

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Andy (Author) January 19

No…unfortunately the individual mandate requires that all individuals are covered under a single or family plan. Their dependent status is for your tax return, not health insurance. But you may be able to get an exemption from the health insurance penalty if they can claim one of the following exemptions (from healthcare.gov). But you will need to show evidence for these in your return when claiming the exemption.

  • You’re uninsured for less than 3 months of the year
    The lowest-priced coverage available to you would cost more than 8% of your household income
    You don’t have to file a tax return because your income is too low (Learn about the filing limit (PDF))
    You’re a member of a federally recognized tribe or eligible for services through an Indian Health Services provider
    You’re a member of a recognized health care sharing ministry
    You’re a member of a recognized religious sect with religious objections to insurance, including Social Security and Medicare
    You’re incarcerated (either detained or jailed), and not being held pending disposition of charges
    You’re not lawfully present in the U.S.
    You qualify for a hardship exemption (homeless, evicted in the past 6 months, received a shut-off notice from a utility company, recently experienced domestic violence, recently experienced the death of a close family member, experienced natural or human-caused disaster that caused substantial damage to your property, filed for bankruptcy in the last 6 months, had medical expenses you couldn’t pay in the last 24 months that resulted in substantial debt, Experienced unexpected increases in necessary expenses due to caring for an ill, disabled, or aging family member etc)
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    kay brazeale January 4

    I had insurance at my place of employment on me and my husband up until Sept. 30, 2014. It was canceled due to the fact that i was unable to go back to work. I was under a doctors care and on short term disability. I got more insurance but we have not been able to get any on him. Will he be fined for this? We are trying to get him some by the end of this month.

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    Andy (Author) January 5

    You may actually be able to avoid the penalty/fine. According to healthcare.gov, the official government site, you may qualify for an exemption from the penalty if you’re uninsured for less than 3 months of the year or the lowest-priced coverage available to you would cost more than 8% of your household income or you qualify for a hardship exemption

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    mike December 27

    I have a question. If you pay a tax on something doesn’t that mean you are allowed to use it. Like public schools, police and fire, roadways? If this is true and you pay a 95 dollar tax doesn’t that mean you are now covered? I can see this being the next lawsuit over the ACA.

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    gail December 23

    With all the exemptions etc being allowed due to all the delays, soon everyone will be exempt from Obamacare. Which will just become another overfunded and underused government program

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    Timothy December 23

    The exemption is not new. Those who didn’t make enough money to afford coverage or have religious objections were already exempt from the mandate. So if you really wanted to you could avoid obamacare quite easily. That’s why I don’t get all the fuss. People need to read more about the law rather than rely on media snippets to make their decisions.

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    Timothy December 23

    Oh, there is a full list of the 14 exemptions available at marketplace.cms.gov. You need to look for/fill in the form called – Application for Exemption from the Shared Responsibility
    Payment for Individuals who Experience Hardships – to claim the exemption. #13 is the one the latest exemption for cancelled policies. But here is a brief summary for all the exemptions currently available (you need to provide proof to claim the exemption in most cases)
    1. You were homeless.
    2 You were evicted in the past 6 months or were facing eviction or foreclosure
    3 You received a shut-off notice from a utility
    4 You recently experienced domestic violence.
    5 You recently experienced the death of a close family member.
    6 You experienced a fire, flood, or other natural human-caused disaster that caused substantial damage to your property.
    7 You filed for bankruptcy in the last 6 months.
    8 You had medical expenses you couldn’t pay in the last 24 months.
    9 You experienced unexpected increases in necessary expenses due to caring for an ill, disabled, or aging family member.
    10 You expect to claim a child as a tax dependent who’s been denied coverage in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and another person is required by court order to give medical support to the child.
    11 As a result of an eligibility appeals decision, you’re eligible either for: 1) enrollment in a qualified health plan (QHP) through the Marketplace, 2) lower costs on your monthly premiums, or 3) cost-sharing reductions for a time period when you weren’t enrolled in a QHP through the Marketplace.
    12 You were determined ineligible for Medicaid because your state didn’t expand eligibility for Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.
    13 You received a notice saying that your current health insurance plan is being cancelled, and you consider the other plans available unaffordable.
    14 You experienced another hardship in obtaining health insurance.

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    Pat July 26

    Actually you left one off………

    ILLEGALS ARE EXEMPT !!!

    ….. and your penalty is paying for their coverage.

    Thanks Obama !!!

    Jeff December 10

    This is so F’ed up if you ask me. The reason why I do not have health insurance is because I can’t afford it even through my employer. When I checked what Obamacare would cost that also did me no good. So now I am damned if I do and damned if I don’t. This A-Hole is taking away liberties and choices one at a time and re-writing the constitution slowly but surely. Health Insurance does me absolutely no good right now and even if I could afford it I doubt I would get it. My primary care physician used to charge me a $50 co-pay with my old insurance plan and now it is only $40 WITHOUT insurance. My medications are fulfilled for FREE WITHOUT INSURANCE from my local grocery store. They used to charge 20 for a refill. Tell me why the hell would I want to just give away money like that for something I currently do not need? And yes I am aware of the risk of hospital visits and what not but thats a risk and a choice that I should have the right to take and I will no longer be given this choice thanks to Obamacare.

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    Hope December 11

    Jeff, I completely agree! and that’s exactly what they want. full power and no liberty and justice for all! people are scared to open there mouths about this current situation . we’re being watched and every time we speak up we are being audited! just simply submitting my email leads them access to me personally. But we need to speak up people!!! lets turn all of the tiny drops into an entire ocean! we own this country! I feel our country is turning into the Hunger games.

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    jeff g January 21

    So paranoid. So attached to your self-imposed “victimization” mantra. Grow up.

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    Brett November 4

    I’m in agreement with Jeff,and you need to go live in Cuba if you think the way you do.

    Dan December 30

    Jeff… I understand your predicament 100%. I am a recent college graduate that is paying for my own education. I had over $100,000 in student loan debt when I graduated and after a year I got a job making about $32,000 a year. I live in the highest taxed and most expensive state in the country and am still struggling financially. BUT, (and this is a big BUT) the one thing I have always made sure to include in my finances is HEALTH INSURANCE. The kicker of my story? I am thin, in shape, 28 years old and extremely healthy. I have not seen a doctor or spent $1 on healthcare in 5 years (either out of my pocket for a copay or from my insurance). I’ve been paying $3,000-$4,000 per year for a few years now for nothing in return. Please let me explain…

    I will not be the American that is a drain on the system that takes takes takes… I want to contribute and I don’t want anything from the government so I don’t ever have to tell my kids how I accepted a hand out. I work hard for everything I have and always will. Here is the problem…

    YOU! And people like you, Jeff. You think your doctor is only getting $40 for your visit, while he was previously getting your $50 co-pay plus insurance money (probably at least a couple hundred dollars)?! If you believe he is accepting $40 in full you are an absolute fool. You think your grocery store’s pharmacy is giving out free medications when you were paying $20 in co-pays per medication plus money from your insurance previously?! Once again… YOU ARE A FOOL! The fact of the matter is I AM PAYING FOR YOU to see your doctor and to get your medicine for free. They know you can’t pay; but, because you live in the greatest country in the world they are required to treat you and they, most likely, have a genuine desire to help you. But… they know you can’t pay; so they send the bill to the federal government. They get subsidized by the taxpayers every time you bum free care and medicine off them, meaning I AM PAYING for you to CHOOSE to not have to pay. Congratulations!! You sir are the biggest problem with the system.

    Now, let’s pretend the “risk” you so eloquently believe is worth taking by not getting health insurance occurs and you get sick/injured and require emergency medical care. Can you pay the $100k plus bill that may be levied down upon you? No you cannot. Not in 100 years. So how does the hospital get their money for your treatment? Do you think they chalk it up to charity? No. A hospital is a business. They will get their money from someone. And since you CHOOSE to not be an upstanding citizen, I along with my fellow taxpayers will pick up your tab! I no longer have any desire to pay for your laziness and stupidity and selfishness so I am quite content that you will be forced to obtain health insurance and finally be forced to be responsible for yourself!!! I have no remorse for the penalty you will have to pay if you do not come to your senses and become a responsible member of society as the President is making you become.

    Thank you President Obama for straightening out fools like Jeff….

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    Dan is a moron January 30

    Dan is apparently an Obama-lover and a fool for buying into this obamacare crap–the president is a pompous idiot and has no roght forcing Americans into buying expensive health insurance..the reason most don’t have is because they can’t afoord, even if they do work, like me. Many of us also pay out ridiculous amounts of child support making it impossible even when working full-time..so i don’t need some 28 year old punk know-it-all telling me what to do any more than we need a totalitarian fool of a president unjustly forcing American people against their will. Ridiculous.

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    billy April 13

    “…no roght forcing Americans into buying expensive health insurance..the reason most don’t have is because they can’t afoord…”

    or they can’t spell?

    Dana February 8

    My doctor refused to see me since I had lost my job and therefore my insurance.
    So you are not paying jack for me!

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    Robert Wayne February 21

    Jerks like you are the reason this crook Obama is getting away with stealing from Americans who don’t choose to fall into this Obamacare ripoff. Thanks a lot socialist prick.

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    Pat July 26

    Congratulations Dan for being a career student and for graduating at the ripe old age of 28, a bit slow aren’t we?? And then you found work AFTER a year, no rush right?? And now you’re raking in the money at 32k a year and the world is on your shoulders right??

    You have ZERO credibility, nice try though. Obama preys on gullible fools like yourself !!!

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    Jack January 13

    Dan,

    No one owes society anything because society picks up the tab for non payers. That’s society’s problem. Society has a choice, that choice, to pay or not to pay for the care of someone who chooses not to buy insurance, does not obligate that person to anything. If you don’t want to pay for their care, then don’t pay for it.

    Using your logic I could pay for your student loans, but as a consequence of my choice, not yours, you must work for my company for the rest of your life, at a rate of pay of my choice.

    Charity carries no obligation for repayment. Freedom requires it.

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    christine January 30

    What Grocery Store? I am in the same boat. No insurance, go to the local urgent care…its $110 w/o insurance for a regular visit and $175 with a more detailed procedure list. But, I have to pay for the scripts. Thanks!

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    christine January 30

    Dan- Respectfully disagree. The entire system is the problem. MEDICINE should NOT be for profit, but should be done for the goodness of humanity. End of story. If you are going o be a doctor to be rich, don’t be one. I believe they should be adequately compensated for their risk, their training, and extreme work conditions, but getting rich shouldn’t be WHY someone becomes a doctor. Another big problem is the lack of standardization of pricing. While I understand there are some problems with this as well…There are literally dozens of urgent care clinics within 20 minutes of my home. Some have charged me in excess of $500 a visit…while others “cash” price is between $100-$175 for services rendered. And I asked them how they can be so cheap…the reason? THEY DON’T HAVE TO PAY A PERSON TO ARGUE WITH INSURANCE FOR DAYS TO GET PAYMENT FOR EACH PATIENT. The cost savings is so much greater with paying out of pocket, they can charge cash customers at a cheaper rate. Need more proof? A close family member used to work for a small doctor office (single practitioner) her job was to fight the insurance to cover BASIC treatment. All day, for over five years. Fight the insurance. Hmmm…INSURANCE COMPANIES DICTATING WHO GETS LIFE SAVING TREATMENTS ARE THE PROBLEM.

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    Lee February 16

    Is it a Risk and a choice you are WILLING to take?
    So if you need to go to the hospital you will instead refuse care, go home and die?
    What is likelier to happen is you will go to the hospital, get care, then get saddled with bills in tens of thousands of dollars, and refuse to pay because you cannot
    And everyone will end up paying.
    Or you can formalize that process. The preimums you pay won’t cover any urgent care either but since everyone’s forced to have insurance now, it will be covered by much higher earners than you.
    I also don’t buy your argument about non-urgent care but let’s leave it at that…
    BTW the fact you are getting your refills FOR FREE is because another SOCIALIST legislation made that possible and there were people just like you at the time yelling they have money taken out of their paycheck to help people who have no income. They were saying at the time, they don’t need to be forced to pay for something they don’t need, and if they got sick, they won’t get medication anyway…

    Food for thought….

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    Steve December 11

    It isn’t the person’s fault for not paying the bills, it’s this fucking Obama stroke! If insurance was normal like it was 10 years ago or even 5 years ago, it would be fine. No matter what happens, there will always be people in need. I am the only one working and I am at the crossroads of choosing between food or insurance that will not work for us or anybody. I choose food and a roof over my family’s head. Anyone who can’t see how fd up this is, is not for the people. terrorist in our whitehouse as a hint!

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    Bob November 30

    It’s not the government that put us here, it’s the fool people that voted all the power hungry, liberal, progressive, socialists and community organizers into office that put us here. Just listen to the media and they will tell you how good those people are….. I’m just a step away from having to go live in the forest. I can’t afford the catastrophic plan I have now. I don’t have any idea how I would pay for the exchanges plans at 4 times what I’m paying now. This was a reply to someone back in July but I thought it would be seen by more this way.

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    jeff g January 21

    Yeah, next time I’m voting for the power hungry conservative, regressive capitalists and lobbyists. THEN we’ll see some change!

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    Pat July 26

    If Obamacare is the best thing since chocolate milk, why did Congress EXEMPT themselves from it? Because it’s NOT, that’s why !!!

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    jef December 14

    Two years and still passing on falsehoods about entitlement. If you make $30 to $40 thousand a year and you are either self-employed or do not have an employer subsidized plan than either pay the penalty for no insurance or pay the ‘Insurance’ costs. Are you also so embittered by your vehicle insurance and home or renter insurance costs? I will be the first to admit that Obacare has much about it that needs improvement. My suggestion is vote for Clinton in 2016, she was a main player in the attempt back in the 1990s to get our country in line with the rest of the developed world with universal health care.

    From an October 2013 web page

    ‘So many people have said Congress is exempt from Obamacare that in September 2013, PolitiFact National made the claim, rated False, one of its top 16 myths about the health care law.

    For many years, members of Congress chose from a variety of insurance plans offered by the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, which serves 8 million federal and retired workers and their dependents.

    So, members of Congress were like most Americans, covered through their employer with the employer picking up most of the tab.

    That will end in January 2014, when lawmakers and some of their staff will be required under the health care law to pick from plans in the health care law’s new marketplaces. They are the only Americans facing this requirement, although Uncle Sam will still continue to pick up most of the cost.

    (Factcheck.org and The Washington Post Fact Checker have also debunked the Congress-is-exempt claim.)

    The requirement for Congress became part of the law after Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) in 2009 offered an amendment that required lawmakers to get their health care through the marketplaces. A version of the amendment was adopted.

    Obama and members of his administration and their families will continue to get their health insurance through the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program. But it’s not “their own” plan, . . . it’s the same plan that covers millions of other federal employees.

    In other words, they will be like most Americans who get their health insurance through an employer — nothing will change. In fact, despite (a) . . . reference to “the rest of America” joining Congress in the marketplace, the vast majority of Americans will continue to be covered through employers, not purchasing insurance from the marketplaces.

    Rather than being “gold-plated,” the federal health insurance is roughly comparable to what members of Congress will be able to buy in the marketplaces, according to three health care reform experts we consulted: Timothy Jost, law professor at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va.; professor Sabrina Corlette of Georgetown University’s Center on Health Insurance Reforms; and Michael Tanner, senior fellow at the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank.

    “It’s a good plan,” Tanner said of the federal health insurance, “but it’s roughly the equivalent” of choices available in the marketplaces.

    Plans available in the marketplace range from “bronze,” which has the lowest premiums and pays 60 percent of the total medical costs of everyone in the plan, to “platinum,” which has the highest premiums and pays 90 percent. (A fifth category, “catastrophic,” is available to people under 30 years old and to some people with very low incomes.)

    Members of Congress, however, are required under the health care law to choose from among 112 “gold-level” plans, which pay 80 percent of the total costs. By way of comparison, the most common plan chosen in the program offered to all other federal employees is a Blue Cross plan, which pays closer to 90 percent.’

    Koa November 15

    One word for this mess.. ” IMPEACHMENT”

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    Don Jones November 11

    I am an American and I resemble that remark.

    Got a piece of land to grow my own. So, whoever you are, come on by for a (slightly chewed upon) chicken leg.

    I will leave a tendon or two for you.

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    Bc November 7

    Let’s be real…. The American people are not going to conform to this B.S. People will stop reporting to the IRS. I have not heard a single good thing about this law. Has anyone???… Some people will be better off living in poverty or on welfare for the rest of their lives. Milk the the system.. Submit and conform. People are going to literally die because of Obama’s radical “Bright Idea”. What are the consequences for not paying the penalties? Jail time? Obama’s a joke and so are his long term pipe dreams. This country is going to be economically crippled, and He’s doing a great job of ruining our country and it’s ideals…. He has been a great illusionist from the start and there are many suckers to be had. This is just the beginning to the end of our freedom… Be prepared, for the worst is yet to come of this…

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    Steve December 11

    AMEN! He needs to be removed. I have been against him since day one!

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    Donald Johnson November 1

    Well, it would be nice that voting solves our problems. But, when I think about it, the vote is ALWAYS a vote between a stinker and waste-pile. Think about Obama versus Romney. WOW. Neither touched a single issue that matters. It turns out that Mr Slick, Obama (I voted for the guy, shame on me) was worse than anyone from Chicago warned me about (one of my pals said, “Look out, Chicago Politics are something America is not ready for!!!!).

    The big fib here is that we were told, over and over, that we could keep our plans. I was dumped by letter from Anthem Blue cross…..the new plan is WAY more expensive, my deductible increased, and the bene’s added, such as Maternity care, are ADDED as a cost to my group. The old plan was based upon the group to which I belong: early retired and Broke. Well, not broke, but afraid of that notion.

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    Don Harris October 31

    Hey folks, start the fight for our country and ideals now. VOTE for your rights, throw out those not fighting for our rights. Like Senator Cornyn of Texas, he didn’t stand with Senator Cruz to fight for us and was ready to capitulate. His political ad on radio makes me sick. He is out as far as This Mex is concerned. VOTE in those who will not apologize, socialize, mandate or dictate. I could go on with my disillusioned outlook on our government, but our only weapon is the vote. No one in this administration is or will be held accountable for abuse or lack of dedication to their duties. Only those invited to the Whitehouse for a beer. Ladies, beware the rock star’s and those ladies who will not be held accountable wanting or posturing for the presidents seat. Pick your candidate, hopefully one for God and our Nation as the founding fathers designed it.

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    Robert Wayne February 21

    I’d love to see Ted Cruz in the White House. I can’t think of a better candidate to become president to try to undo the crap that Obama has forced on us.

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    Pat July 26

    Vote out ALL of the incumbents and support a third party.

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    Jimmy October 24

    law allows for a “short coverage gaps” of up to three months before the fines take effect

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    John December 16

    Looks like the “gap” you refer to is defined as, only if you “are between jobs and without insurance for up to three months.”

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    Troy Aikman October 19

    The poor people making more than $200,000 a year better look out! Did anyone read the whole page before commenting that the penalty is unfair? There was a recent study that indicated people who make $180,000 or more a year have ‘more than enough money’ to cover their costs.

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    Pat July 26

    I got hit for $750.00 last year on my 60k income and wife’s 20k income, we were taxed based on the full 80k even though she has insurance through her job. I’m retired and living off my pension and now social security. This will DOUBLE next year to $1,500.00 dollars. Thanks Obama !!!

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    js_biggs October 4

    I love the fact that Americans are going to have to starve to pay for Obamacare. They deserve it.

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    Robert Wayne February 21

    Not all Americans. Just the stupid SOBs who voted for Obama.

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    Pat July 26

    I didn’t vote for obama, but i will end up being hungrier next year since my rates will double.

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    skamman October 2

    No ones talking about big companies cutting hours to avoid paying healthcare for their employees. Like in restaurants, i.e. darden who plan to cut employee hours below 30 a week. Now you have all these people looking for other jobs to combat the loss of money. So when you go to get extra employment there is about a hundred people in front of you with applications for the same position. This in turn will make unemployment go up, poverty go up, and crime rise to an astronomical high. Welcome to the new America. Hope you didn’t vote against people having guns, you’ll need to protect urself against all the home invasions, and store robberies that are going to take place just to afford going to the doctors. Shoot there might even be take overs at the doctors offices just to get a check up….lol. Doctors being held hostage at gun point to check your ears and throat.

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    Pat July 26

    You’re misdirecting the blame….. You’re blaming the employer for cutting hours because they can’t afford the cost of insuring their employees, when you should be blaming Obama for putting them in the position he did that forced them to cut hours. Liberals don’t care that Americans are suffering, as long as they get their socialist ideals out there that’s all that matters. Remember what Obama said, “Elections have consequences”, now you know whose side he’s on, not the American workers.

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    Charles August 23

    Some employers/insurance companies have creatively bypassed Obamacare laws by ‘repackaging’ their coverage into a different name. I’m retired from a major American corporation (but too young for Medicare), and carry employer-paid health insurance with one of the largest insurers. I have been advised by both the federal & state insurance regulatory agencies that my retiree’s insurance is exempt from all Obamacare laws. While I can live with that (it’s an excellent policy), my concern is that if it’s not regulated under Obamacare, then will it be considered ‘approved’ coverage when it comes time to report coverage to the IRS?
    I’ve worked hard all my life (usually holding more than one job at a time), and have donated countless of hours to my community and church… I never would have thought that losing what I’ve worked for, ending up in a home, and then being denied health care via Obamacare rules (so I can die and not be a financial burden to the government) could become a reality.
    Welcome to the New America.

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    Still a patriot November 25

    It seems to me the way to fix the health care problem needs to start with the health care providers. Hospitals over charge for care,meds.,procedures and anything else they can squeeze a dollar out of the American people for.Pharmaceutical companies are getting rich off the injured, sick,or dying. And they both get away with it by giving large campaign contributions to the crooks we put into office. Let’s face it,big government is big business! Let’s vote in a business man instead of a politician for a change. And let’s make sure he or her has been very successful so that they are already wealthy and will not be easily corrupted by the rich lobbies that really run Washington. If you think about it, if your already rich and powerful ,and you still want to get into politics then it must be for patriotism and a true interest in making a difference in the future of this great country. After all,even with all the problems and issues we so passionately complain about,we still live in the greatest country in the world.

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    Tina August 3

    It’s the government that put us into this situation. They allow poisons into our environment such as processed foods, deadly chemicals, contaminated drinking water, etc. – poisons that they know very well will incapacitate and/or kill people. And don’t tell me that it’s my responsibility if I get sick under those circumstances. They purposely make our citizens ill, half the time as experiments, and then allow greedy selfish corporations to give people poisonous, expensive “medications” which they then become unable to function or live without. And then they actually expect that the sick must somehow break their backs to afford it- like getting blood from stones. Hospitals and doctors overcharge ridiculously and the fact is we’re now being forced to pay them, instead of them being forced to lower their rates, and push healthier lifestyles and holistic healing instead of being drug dealers. I’m sorry to say that our government is either a joke or a horrible monster. They see citizens as expendable slaves with no value besides populating the workforce to generate money. They take hundreds of dollars out of my and everybody else’s paychecks every month and then totally waste what they don’t line their own pockets with. People make politics seem so complicated, and that’s exactly what the government wants- to keep confusion in the mix in order to cover up their horrible truth.

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    Andy (Author) July 16

    Note: Household income under Obamacare is different to your adjusted gross income (AGI) or modified adjusted gross income (MAGI). Household income includes the modified adjusted gross income of your tax filing dependents (children, spouse) as well.

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    Susa July 4

    Well, let’s see just how Obamacare has effected monthly premiums….at my daughters office premiums per employee went from $545 per employee to $905 per month. And that is just this years rate increase. No change in plan. If anyone thinks that all of these “not cost” services are not costing us anything, they are as delusional as the idiots that passed it. Someone has to pay, and do you really think that businesses are willing or even able to absorb these increases? NO! And just wait until the insurance mandate goes into effect and the employees of a small business (under 50 employees) have to either purchase their own insurance or pay the penalty of as much as $2065 for a family. They are now hurting the same people they supposedly are wanting to help.

    Are these employees going to magically find that extra money in their paycheck? They might if Obama has his way, he wants minimum wage to go up. For every dollar paid out in increased wages doesn’t just cost the employer a dollar, it cost about $1.17 (an estimate depending on your state). Let’s break it down. The employer has to pay the employer portion of social security, insurance premiums based on total wages, and yes taxes based on employee wages (in our case occupational and business taxes). All of this has to be passed on to who? You got it, to the people that just got the raise, but now they actually have to cover the wage increase and the additional cost as well by paying more for goods and services. So what on the surface looks like an increase actually decreases their spending power by about .17 for every extra dollar earned. Sometimes I wonder, have these brilliant people in Washington ever put a pencil to paper to see their effects on the economy. I don’t think so.

    People, dig deep, look into what these elected officials are doing. You don’t have to take my word for it, just talk to any small business owner. They will tell you what all of this will cost and who is going to pay for it.

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    Dave October 8

    When the minimum wage has doubled, everyone else’s wage will have to go up as well. When that happens services and products will also go up and Obama can justify the devaluation of the dollar. I haven’t been able to see it any other way.

    Add the damaging expense of AHA to that (I’m sure that will go up, as well) and you have a catastrophe. Of course, our ability to borrow more money will not be there, so we wind up where POTUS wanted us at the start – as the poorest country on the face of the Earth.

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    John October 17

    They have done the calculations. You are just realizing what they already have known.

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    Najah February 20

    I am still not clear. I cannot afford my companies insurance, so I pay privately out of my own pocket. I make less than $37,000 a year and pay for all my own meds, etc. This last year I figured that I pay over 7.5% of my income towards my healthcare needs. Luckily, my son, who I adopted, has Medicaid until he is 18, or 21 if he is college. So what does this mean for me??? Will I still have a penalty for this?? A friend of my said a tax guy told her that if you don’t carry “major medical” you could be penalized up to $2,900 or more!!! Is this the truth?!?!? I am so confused. I am also worried because it’s bad enough my income tax returns are rapidly going down hill and I REALLY can’t afford to lose anymore money. I don’t know why they call this “affordable healthcare” because I am not seeing any of it!!!

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    aclnal February 13

    Does anyone know what the penalty would be if I don’t add my husband (homemaker/ not employed) to my employer sponsored insurance plan? I have our children covered but to add him to the policy would cost an estimated $220.00/mo. He is very healthy and we are willing to pay medical bills if something drastic happens but the added expense to add him is more than our budget can allow. He is a SAH dad with no unemployment benefits.
    Would it be worth looking into an exchange in the fall with a high ded and high coins plan or would they require him to be signed up under my private insurance.
    This all is very confusing and irritating that our liberties are being slowly drained away. I have tried to research as much as I can online for the exchange program but there is very little info until fall.

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    Michelle January 15

    Why not make the illegals and the welfare bums of this country pay for the Obamacare ? They are the only ones with money in this country since they are the ones that put us in the mess. God, I am glad my parents and grandparents aren’t alive to see this screwed us mess we are in.

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    Jessica June 17

    The illegals are what keeps this country running. Learn ur facts first hunny. And ur grandparents who aren’t alive to see this, too bad I wish they could. A black president and kids of every race able to get the medicare they need. I would love to shove that in front of ther republican stuck up racist faces.

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    Skeeter July 4

    @Jessica, How and where did you ever see the word racist in Michelle’s comment? She did not imply racism toward our president nor towards any political party. We are all sick and tired of the freeloaders in this country!! Jessica…YOU must be an illegal, a welfare bum or just a flat out racist!!!!!!!!! Do you realize how stupid your comment sounds? Please think about what you are about to say and you won’t seem so uneducated. But then again, you are what is wrong with this country and I did not expect anything different from someone like you. And yes, my parents and grandparents worked hard to get everything and expected no hand outs from anyone, especially the government. If they couldn’t afford it, they didn’t get it, including health care. I did not have health care growing up because we didn’t go to the emergency with earaches, scraped knees, etc. But maybe your parents and grandparents weren’t like mine. Maybe you are just another “product” of your upbringing…welfare handed down generation after generation…LAZY BUMS!! Now does that make me a racist? Wait before you answer, I know what your answer is…it is always the same answer. Everyone is a racist who says anything about our president right? WRONG AGAIN. What label would you put on someone who has said anything about past presidents…NONE of them were black? Really? Stupid Idiot, get a job and stop mooching off of the hard working Americans who actually care about our country and the destructive path it is headed.

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    Brendie September 5

    @ Skeeter – I so agree with you on this one. I am so tired of hearing the racist card being used. Now-A-Days the descrimination is against those individuals that are “white”. I was a single mom going to college with three kids and working FT with a 3.9 GPA and could not qualify for a scholarship because I only qualified for ones where an individual had to be “black” to qualify. I have student loans out the wazoo because I went after my AS, BA and MA degrees. Yes people I worked FT while going to school FT while being a single mom with 3 kids. Been with the same company for 15 years now… I believe that those individuals that are “living off the system” need to do community service in order to qualify for benefits. They also need to prove that they are looking for work. I remember barely being able to buy food for my kids because I supposedely made too much at $12.86 per hour to qualify for food stamps. Going to the grocery store was so depressing because I had mac and cheese and hotdogs in my cart while those individuals that were checking out in front of me with food stamps were chowing down on steaks and potatoes and pork chops, decked out with a ton of gold around their neck….going out to their “pimping” vehicles….GO FIGURE!!!!! I agree with Michelle and she was not discriminatory against a certain race just on the WELFARE BUMS of society that cant keep their legs crossed and make tons of babies that they cannot afford just to continue to live off the system…I believe those individuals that voted for a President, just because of the color of his skin, are the ones that are truly racist. I know I voted for the best person to handle the situation that we “as a country” are in. Geesh I dont see Clinton Care or Bush Care out there. And to tell those individuals that make over $200,000 (I believe) that they have to pay health care taxes for those individuals that are “low income” is also rediculous. If they are making that kinda money then they worked for it and are probably educated. Lets focus instead on educating people so that they do not sound as rediculous as Jessica sounded.

    Cynthia October 27

    Jessica, “hunny”, I don’t know what country you are in, but in this country, illegals are taking jobs AWAY from Americans, they are NOT what is keeping the country running. They are a drain on state’s economies, just look at California and Arizona. And you are saying that just Obama’s black half is president and his white half isn’t? (He was raised by his white mother and white grandmother you know…) Do you know for sure, 100%, that no other president on our history didn’t have any negro blood in them??? Or native American blood in them?? YOU’RE the racist! Get real sweetheart. What are you…like 12?

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    Mad March 31

    Jessica
    You are prejudice and ignorant. I wish my dad was alive to tell you how messed up your thinking is.
    Unfortunately I am left to live your take over of this once great country. Go back to your country and take with you the diseases that we eradicated here in the 50s and 60s. You are not entitled to the advances that my families blood paid for.
    And don’t give me the BS ta we took this country from the Indians and Mexicans. The Mexicans took their land from the Indians too. It is the way of the world as it always has been. If hadn’t , the TJ border (arm pit) would just be further north. STICK IT !!!!!

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    Still a patriot November 25

    Illegals who send most of there earnings to other countries instead of putting it back into the economy. Not to mention taking jobs from real Americans who aren’t here to exploit the ignorance of the Liberal Democrats running this country. And your actually proud that all these people of all races are being provided with Medicare, that by the way the working people in this country are paying for.Its people like you that have this country in the fix its in,so far in debt that our government is selling our landmarks and national treasures to bail itself out of debt.And your proud of the fact that millions of people voted for a president because of the color of his skin instead of the basis of his policies. Wow you truly are the worst kind of American and should be promptly deported to one of these third world countries that YOUR President keeps sending our hard earned money to.

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    Donna January 10

    I draw disability and do not get Medicare for 24 months nor do I qualify Medicaid . Nor can I afford regular insurance because my check is so small. I can NOT believe that the government is forcing us to buy something we can’t afford and at the same penalize us by not allowing us to get medicare. So at this point due I buy insurance and not pay for meds and rent or what……..THIS IS SO UNFAIR to the American people. Let the senators, congress, etc suffer the indignities that are imposing.

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    Patty B December 28

    In all my years, 56 to be exact, I have never seen such a scam pulled by the Government as this new tax being shoved down our throats. This is called “healthcare???” Where is the care here? Just watch what happens. All the government is trying to do is create more welfare states. Nobody can afford these ridiculous, over-inflated hospital and medical fees. The only ones who will profit are the hospitals and pill-pushing, pharmaceutical companies. It’s just business as usual and the bottom line is…money. It will all eventually implode. Wake up people!

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    D. Sanders December 28

    Your best solution is to NOT buy insurance and pay the penalty tax, which is more reasonable than you think. Next, practice disease prevention, which is easier than you think. Immediately cut out sugar and simple carbohydrate foods that convert to sugar in your body. What few people realize is that sugar is the main culprit in arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Also, look up which foods are acidic and which ones are alkaline — make sure you eat small amounts of acidic foods and larger amounts of alkaline foods. That’s because disease, and especially cancer, loves an acidic body pH. Next, avoid packaged foods and eat like a cave man — meats, fish, nuts, and fresh fruits and vegetables, preferably organic. Next, never eat anything that has partially hydrogenated oil in it. Avoid all vegetable oils except Cocunut and Olive Oil. Finally, take Lugol’s 2% iodine drops daily, which will prevent cancer and thyroid disorders. Few Americans understand that the American food industry is creating a steady stream of sick people for the medical industry to treat. America is the sickest civilized nation on earth. And then, once you go to the doctor — unless you’re seeing a holistic doctor, or at least one practicing integrative medicine (the best of holistic and conventional) — you will be prescribed drugs for your ailment and there will be no attempt to address the underlying cause of your disease. Doctors in medical school learn only how to diagnose diaseases and then prescribe drugs to treat those diseases; they learn nothing about good nutrition and disease prevention. And the drugs often make things worse. Wake up, people!!! The AMA can’t solve your problems, and neither can the U.S. government.

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    booley bob November 13

    I’ve read these comments and I agree that Obamacare will collapse for the reasons stated, its cheaper to pay the tax than buy insurance. For example, if you have someone who doesn’t access health care much, they would be better off to pay the tax and pocket the savings for the few times they do need healthcare. Basic care should be the responsibility of everyone to pay without insurance. People could then purchase catastrophic insurance for those very serious illnesses that don’t affect most of us. Thats what we should be focusing on and paying insurance for. This would, then, be similar to medicare. You pay into it over a lifetime but don’t collect anything until you reach a trigger point (age). Under catastrophic care, you pay into it over a lifetime but don’t collect until you reach a trigger point (serious sustained illness). Its too costly to do it any other way.

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    Andy (Author) November 13

    I personally don’t think Obamacare will collapse anytime soon, particularly after his re-election and focus on the fiscal cliff over the the next 6 months. I also think it is a step in the right direction towards realistic and sustainable health care reform. The problem with insurance is that no one is going to sell it to you after you discover the serious illness, and most people are going to think “I will never get cancer, say” and once they do it will be too late to get insurance. So forcing or compelling people to buy it is probably the only way to get universal basic coverage.

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    G.Woolhouse November 16

    But Andy – Doesn’t Obamacare also prevent insurers from denying coverage because of pre-existing conditions? Doesn’t that mean I could theoretically sign up for insurance in the ambulance on the way to the hospital, and they’d have to take me? And doesn’t that just about guarantee the collapse booley bob mentioned? I mean, even at the max, the penalty is still less than half of purchasing insurance.

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    D. Sanders September 15

    Interesting to read the original analysis and all the comments. But here’s what few seem to understand: Our existing sysem before the reform was seriously flawed. We spent more on healthcare and got worse results than any other civilized nation in the world, in spite of the propaganda that we have the best system in the world. Now, is ObamaCare a good solution? No, it is not. It’s impossible to overhaul 17% of the economy and not have it be a mess with unintended consequences. And certainly, many people will choose to pay the penalty rather than buy insurance. If that leads to the collapse of the system so that a single payer system must be adopted, then maybe that is the best result. Certainly our old system was unsustainable, making insurance unaffordable for everyone but the upper middle class and rich. The real solution is for people to take responsibility for the health and not not smoke and eat bad foods that lead to arthritis, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. It would also help to get diabetes, heart-disease and cancer causing ingredients out of food, as well as toxins in the air, water, and consumer products. But these things will never happen. So, having the system collapse and going to single payer just might be the best result, with one exception: the single payer system would provide just the basics, and then the upper middle class and rich would buy Cadillac supplement plans. Gotta have something for the rich beside Tiffany’s. But, as you can see by my comments, there is no such thing as a perfect system, just as there is no perfect world. But consider that Chief Justice Roberts made the individual mandate a tax, which means ObamaCare can be repealed with 51 votes in the Senate via “budget reconciliation.” So, it’s quite likely that Obamacare will be swept away in January of 2013. Then, we’ll go back to a system that is guaranteed to be unsustainable. And if ObamaCare survives, then we will have to improve it, or go to single payer. Whatever happens your best choice is to learn what causes disease and avoid it. And also learn that American food manufacturers, industrial polluters, AMA doctors, and insurance companies do not have your best health interests in mind.

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    Andy (Author) November 13

    Yep prevention and knowledge are sometime just as important.

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    Kathy July 8

    In plain english, the individual mandate requires every living American to purchase health insurance for themselves, and any dependants. (Excluding illegal aliens, indian tribes, people in prison and special people given exemptions).

    In order to enforce this mandate, the law calls for penalties to be assessed under the context of your income tax filings if you do not have coverage for more than 4 consecutive months.

    How the fine amount is calculated is slightly harder to explain than quantum string theory, and will likely require that you hire someone to figure it out for you. I can say, however, that the fines are almost certainly going to be miniscule in comparison to the cost of an insurance plan.

    And that, ladies and gentleman, is the dirty secret of Obamacare. The individual mandate is not designed to make people responsible and buy insurance. It is designed to destroy the private insurance industry almost totally and in the space of just a few years.

    Senator Ron Johnson has been accurately describing the expected outcomes of Obamacare where employer funded coverage is concerned. Long story short, it will soon cease to exist because employers will soon discover it is a lot cheaper to pay the fine for not offering coverage to employees than it is to pay their share of the premiums. More than $12,000 cheaper on average, assuming premiums do not continue to go up.

    What Sen. Johnson has not yet explored is what will happen when individuals face the same decision employers do. Specifically, what will people do when they figure out that they can pay a minimal fine and avoid paying a huge premium for insurance.

    “Wait!”, you say, ”People will not do that because they will be afraid they will get sick and not have insurance! They will HAVE to buy it!”

    Ummm….wrong. Well, eventually anyway. See, Obamacare requires that anyone requesting insurance coverage be allowed to buy it, with all pre-existing conditions covered fully, at no increased premium costs. In fact, denial of coverage is all but impossible.

    So pretty soon people will figure out how to game this system.

    Lets say you are a family of 4 and make the median income of about $50,000 per year. Your employer just dropped coverage and now you are under the individual mandate. A family plan will cost about $20,000 per year (at the current rate of premium increases), and you are told you ar eligible for subsidies from the taxpayers to cover some of that cost.

    That subsidy works out to probably about $10,000. This means you will still need to pay $10,000 for insurance, or $833 per month.

    Read that again. You make $50,000 and will have to pay $833 per month for insurance. That family probably pays less than that for housing. That is a HUGE amount. (20% of their gross)

    It gets worse. That $833 per month comes out of AFTER TAX income. When you have an employer sponsored plan like most do now, your contribution to premiums comes out of pre tax income and reduces your tax liability.

    Not under this policy, though. That $833 comes out of the net. After Social Security, Medicare and Income Taxes are taken out. It comes out of take home pay.

    For our example family, that $833 per month comes out of their take home pay of roughly $40,000. That works out to be about 25% of their take home pay every month for insurance.

    Wow.

    So what is a reasonable person going to conclude:

    1) Insurance costs $833 per month, and the fine is a one time charge of about $400. – The fine is a lot less expensive than insurance.

    2) I can pay for most of my families “regular” medical care (prescriptions, office visits, etc.) for less than the $10,000 insurance costs. – Buying insurance doesn’t make financial sense.

    3) If someone in our family gets sick or has an accident, I can call the insurance company on the way to the hospital and get insurance, and they can’t make me pay more for it or say no to any care after I sign up. – There is almost no risk from not having insurance.

    4) I can drop insurance as soon as the big bills are paid, and do #3 as many times as I need to, and they can’t stop me from getting covered. – There is actually NO risk for not having insurance.

    So people will quickly learn how to scam the system, pay a little fine, and only get insurance when they have big bills to pay.

    In the insurance industry this is called “adverse selection”, which means that only people using a lot of insurance buy insurance, meaning there is never enough premium money to cover the claims costs.

    Insurance, as it exists today, relies on many people paying premium and a relative few using it at any one time, making it possible to pay the claims and not go broke in the process. (Sound a lot like socialism to you? Yeah, me too.)

    Obamacare destroys this model and results in only people using insurance paying premiums, and then not paying enough to cover their own claims, much less help pay for anyone else’s.

    When this happens, there can only be one outcome. Insurance companies will either go bankrupt and cease to exist, or require massive bailouts from the government to remain in business.

    Bailouts are never going to happen. It would be way too expensive, and the US is already too far in debt to be able to do it anyway.

    That means insurance companies go broke, and “insurance” becomes harder and hard to buy for those that want to.

    Who do you think will ride to the rescue when this happens? Well, your knight in shining armor of course.

    The Federal government will arrive to “save the day” with a single payer, government run, Canada style system. They will tell the public “Private insurance has failed the people of America, and proven it cannot work. Only a government run system can provide the care the American people need.”

    All of this is by design of course. You have to believe that Democrats and Obama are supremely stupid to think they didn’t know this was a plan designed to fail. They WANT it to fail. They NEED it to fail.

    Failure finally makes a single payer government run system popular and lets them finally take control over the people they way they want to. Control “health care” and you have control of almost every aspect of people’s lives. This is what they want. Power and control by the “intelligent elite” over the “unwashed masses”.

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    Nic July 17

    Perfectly said and very accurate from what my accountant tells me. if someone can’t see the importance of getting out on the streets for this election and exposing all of this, they deserve to be consumed by the socialist party that is behind this, i.e. the progressive movement.

    The tragedy for our country is that most people who are all for Obama could not tell you the difference between a free enterprise system or a marxist state, and certainly not socialism and capitalism. They rant because a hand full of people raked in a bunch of money illegally and got away with it, without fully understanding what the cause for this was.

    They have decided (because someone else got them mad enough to do it) to throw the baby out with the dirty bathwater, i.e. toss out free enterprise and capitalism for something that – in their mind – seems right to them, i.e. government growing big enough to ‘protect them’ from the money mongers they have been told are controlling their future and the cause for the present problems.

    They are clueless where the problem even stems from, clueless about the world bank’s involvement, the manipulation of currencies by the world bank, and the mandates on the US to bail out every failed socialist country or third world country that mismanages their finances and leaves their people starving. They seem only to be concerned with seeing that someone gives them something for nothing, and hold out that the government will keep them all safe and cozy and happy even if they don’t work.

    I digress.

    This is a battle of ideologies and nothing more. A pre-war skirmish for a totalitarian rule devoid of a government that is operated under Constitutional law and a Bill of Rights that protect the rights of its citizens.

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    jrj90620 November 24

    I thought you didn’t have to buy,if it exceeded 8% of your income.The rest of your comments I agree with.

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    jef December 14

    We have plenty of ‘middle-class’ relatives in Canada – guess what, they are relatively much happier than the complaining lot here – and none of those relatives are starving or in financial distress.

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    lorraine January 20

    Cathy -Brilliant love it(your comment) Also another way to beat the system is taking advantage of the rules that are in place, that enables a health care uninsured-to waiver the penalty for not having health care coverarage, thus being exempt from the penalty. For example,one has only to stop paying their health premiums in the plan that they’re in,-say the 2nd month of coverage-just stop paying your premium,-whereupon the provider will drop them from that health plan. Being dropped from health coverage,enable you to waiver the tax penalty for not having health coverage. In as much as if you are dropped from one health plan,you can’t necessarily join another health plan except during open season,usually in Novemmber or December.

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    Dave July 5

    Can someone, anyone, point me to a table that will show what this will cost us? My wife and I are retired, 59 and 58 years old, and are not sure what our income will be in the coming years. I have p0ked around the internet for over a year and STILL I cannot find the costs to childless couples over 55 years old. This would be a great favor to me.

    Thanks,
    DJ

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    Terry July 2

    But what if I live overseas (stil an American citizen) and don’t use American health insurance? Am I liable to pay for health care?

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    andys2i July 4

    If you meet the criteria to file a US tax return, you will have to show proof of health insurance from overseas. Note however that the IRS is still working through the regulations of this provision and will issue more guidance. I imagine for foreign residents there will be additional exceptions. I will update this article when I get more information on this. Great question.

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    Andy (Author) November 28

    Recent update to article – US citizens or residents who reside overseas and meet the IRS foreign residency criteria (generally 330 full days outside of the U.S. during a 12-month period) can also claim exemption from the individual mandate penalty via Form 8965. If living overseas for a partial period of time that does not qualify you as a foreign resident for tax purposes coverage provided by your local employer (under an expatriate health plan) can count as qualified health coverage that precludes them from the penalty. One exemption that may be particularly relevant to U.S. citizens living abroad for a small part of a year is the exemption for a short coverage gap. This exemption provides that no shared responsibility payment will be due for a once-per-year gap in coverage that lasts less than three months.

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    Darwin June 29

    Andy – Just wanted to add some more points to your article from Factcheck.org

    – From 2017, the minimum tax per person will rise each year with inflation. And for children 18 and under, the minimum per-person tax is half of that for adults.

    The minimum amount per family is capped at triple the per-person tax, no matter how many individuals are in the taxpayer’s household. So, for example, a couple with one child over 18 (or two children age 18 or under), and no coverage, would pay a minimum of $285 in 2014, $975 in 2015 and $2,085 in 2016. And that would be the minimum no matter how many uninsured dependents a taxpayer has.

    The tax would be more for persons with higher taxable incomes. When phased in, it will be 2.5 percent of household income that exceeds the income threshold for filing a tax return. For 2011, those thresholds were $9,500 for a single person under age 65, and $19,000 for a married person filing jointly with a spouse. So, to give a rough calculation, a couple with $100,000 of income might pay a tax of $2,025 if they choose to go without coverage.

    A tax is assessed for each month that a person is not covered. It is pro-rated, so that a person who is not covered for only a single month would pay 1/12th of the tax that would be due for the full year. So, for example, the minimum tax per person for failing to get coverage would be $7.92 for each month of 2014, $28.75 for each month of 2015, and $57.92 for each month of 2016, when fully phased in.

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    andys2i July 4

    Thanks Darwin. Some great information here. I will add it to the article.

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    jen October 17

    Do you think that once the IRS sees that people have figured out that paying the penalty is actually cheaper than the insurance that they will increase the penalties??

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    Tony June 29

    Yes, Mark would rather we penalize people who pay for health insurance by forcing them to take the brunt of the cost involved in taking care of those people without insurance. Funny conservative paradox… only it was NOT a paradox for Romney when he had a similar plan when he was state governor. Perfect example of a party following a marketing strategy instead of their true ideals.

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    Gail June 29

    Why are people complaining so much. Its about time we started the ball rolling on health care reform. The law may not be prefect, but it is a start towards controlling the spiralling costs of health care in this country.

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    Mark June 29

    Obamacare was bad law yesterday. It’s bad law today. Nuff Said

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    Darius June 29

    Choose not to have health insurance and your are penalized. If you don’t want to be penalized, purchase health insurance. It’s still a choice.

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    Robert Wayne February 21

    That’s no choice at all moron. It’s a ripoff either way. Choice would be if I want health insurance I’ll buy it. If I don’t want health insurance I won’t buy it. And I won’t be penalized by the stinking commie politician in the White House for it either.

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    Lorraine roberts January 20

    Damn shame how this gov, under Obama, has passed a law to steal money from people,while abridging their constitutional right of the choice to not purchase something,it they choose to not do so,in this case purchase health insurance. This penalty that is imposed on people at tax time is blatant theft. And done so with little regard to whether a person can afford pay this penalty of $695,or more,when people have credit card debts that they are struggling with,morgages, high rents,etc,etc etc. All Obama accomplished with this unfair tax penalty for not having health coverage was-to steal money from many who don’t have $695 to give away,so he could place it into the government funds,probably to help pay off the government debt. Did these thieves ever consider that if someone was uninsured all year or part of it,he,she might have been sent medical bills for an uninsured visit to a health care facility,and might need this $695 to pay it off. Silly fools all of them in gov.

    Griffin June 29

    Obamacare is not a tax or a penalty for those that don’t have health insurance–it will in fact save people money on healthcare! It will lead to reduced premiums for all people and better health care for all people. The right wingers, and their propaganda source Fox News, are maligning Obamacare through a series of duplicitous comments because they want the current 100% increase in healthcare every 10 years to continue ad infintum with no respite for the American People. Obamacare will stop the uninsured from taking advantage of ER’s and passing the cost along to the insured in the form of higher premiums or higher taxes. It will free up doctors’ time in the ER. It will cover tens of millions more people. It will increase focus on HOW TO STAY WELL instead of after the fact treatments, which cost huge sums of money so that over time heath care costs for the total population will be lowered substantially. It will eliminate pre-condition clauses, limits on coverage and it will reduce drug prices for the American People. The right wing GOP has NO solution for anything, let alone health care—they are content with 100% increases in costs every ten years. As everyone knows, as a result of these unsustainable cost increases, business has had to saddle their employees with more and more of these increased costs. It’s over the top now, but the GOP doesn’t care. Obama is taking a sensible approach which will reduce healthcare cost over time, cover millions more people, and result in a healthier population. What can’t the right wingers understand about this?

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    Julann July 12

    Griffin: your arguments do not make any sense. The reason that insurance costs what it does is simple statistics and algorithims. They assess the risk of insuring you and when the cost is too high, they drop you. How can insurance costs go down when they will now be required to keep their “million dollar” patients? This is a push to disolve the private insurance business and go to universal care. People know how to stay well, people know when they are over weight, people know they should not smoke, etc. but we still have free will and people will continue to do these things. What’s next? If your BMI is over 30 we add a thousand dollars per point until you get it down to where the government wants it? The arguments over Obama Care are not left or right, they are about keeping the government out of our lives.

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    mark February 15

    The premiums have gone up over 6 times compared to before ocare. It’s a welfare program paid for by tax penalties, increase premiums and other income and product taxes. You don’t have clue . You have to be one of the people with “Free” coverage. Good luck since this system of govt. will implode soon. Nothing is free and you will find that out the hard way.

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    jrj90620 November 24

    Maybe govt can give you something for nothing,even after all the waste,fraud and inefficiencies of govt.Kind of doubt it.I’m thinking the Dems are transitioning us to health care rationing(AKA single payer).That may be a good thing,if it gets ignorant,lazy Americans to start taking better care of themselves,relying on their own bodies as their primary doctor,since care won’t be readily available.

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    Jeff July 1

    It’s your personal opinion only. It certainly isn’t “enough” for anyone.

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    Joey Novak July 2

    Right on Mark. The real cause of rising health care costs are litigious lawyers, and insurance companies who flex their muscles and force doctors to raise their prices to get a decent payment from them. Obama-care does nothing to address these problems.

    Reply

    lorraine January 20

    Don’t say that it is fair to impose a tax penalty on someone who is health uninsured,because he,she,may utilize an emergency room for their health care,and the payment for such is passed onto the insured with higher permiums,because this is not how it works. If you have no health coverage and you are treated in an emergency room,you think they say “Oh you’re uninsured,so this service is free”? No that’s not how it works,but you are sent a bill for the visit,and if you claim not to be able to pay it,then they charge you according to your income percentage. If you’ve no income,and on welfare or similalr,well you’d be getting emergency room,and doctor visits free anyway. So how do you jerks figure that the uninsured are able to get health care for free,when they get medical service ? It doesn’t work out that way. In that most facilities,unless it is a free clinic,they send an uninsured person a bill for the service,if he had no health coverage,or at the least,charge him,by his income level.The health coverage uninsured are always held responsible for they payment of services rendered,and believe me,they will hound you with that bill until you pay it, It IS NOT PASSED ON as higher premiums for the insured, No that’s done by the greedy health care programs,because they are after all a business, forever looking to increase the salary of doctors,and health care workers,just like any providers,be it landlords,or anyone else looking to increase their profits. So stop blaming the higher cost of health care on the uninsured,to justify the $695 and rising amount that they will be in debt to pay,it’s has not justification and is plain out thievery .

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    anita69bear January 23

    I make around 45000 a year before taxes after they take 11000 I can’t afford insurance my job offers it and for me to get it its around 20800 a year that’s at 400 a week and I don’t qualifies for state assistance I have no car payment just car insurance for roughly 2000 a year and my rent is 9720 a year and electric runs around 1800 a year that’s not including food and clothes for the family and other expenses so do the math on it and tell me I can afford it oh and thats the only income for a family of 4 children me and my wife fuck Obama and his health care

    Dennis February 17

    Lorraine, I think you missed the target some what, as far as where the money goes. You pay outrageous premiums and are taxed if you don’t, so many that choose not to work, illegals, your higher elected officials don’t have to pay, or pay much for healthcare.

    This government from 08, has done nothing to pay towards the deficit, rather has greatly increased it and much for entitlement programs. Why was voter turnout so strong for the liberla prez? Why is Bernie and Clinton so popular?? They are offering more “free stuff”, Seems to me, even a “smart liberal should be able to see where this country is going (bankruptcy), they vote out of PC, or emotional guilt, not being pragmatic. The “kumbaya” of the 60’s was fun, but it wont work with a country of 350 million people.

    Reply

    Brendie September 5

    Oh and FYI – I make $50,000 a year and my husband makes over $50,000 a year and he has medical thru the VA and thru work and I have medical for me and my kids thru work.

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    jef December 14

    Actually the plans have a copay for doctor visits that is the only charge if participating and preferred. For instance my plan is $30 for pcp.

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    David October 26

    Um, as far as I know, no one “died” for our “right” to vote. Unless you consider some of the shipwrecked pilgrims… (and I’m not going into the mess of women’s vote, Black’s vote, etc, because no one HAD to die to get the right) But “we” came to this country to get basic freedoms: Greek, Spanish, British, Polish, German, etc. But no one died fighting for our voting rights. Unless you can enlighten us all…..

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    Dennis February 17

    It isn’t about the “middle class”, it is about socialism for the lowest class. Many of you likely voted this moron in,,TWICE!! or didn’t vote at all. Most Americans are ignorant of the fact that their country as they knew it, is be eroded by quilt throwing PC. This bill was for nothing more than Obama’s “legacy”, pushed through by a liberal congress (not even read I might add) and his voters that will get it for free , or nearly free. Just look at the food stamp rolls and how they have doubled since the libs controlled EVERYTHING the 1st 4 years (08-12)

    No doubt there are a very few that honestly benefit and need this help, but it would have been cheaper for us all, if as a country, just paid for the 10-20 million that could prove the need through the system we already had. I’d rather subsidized a Medical facility with proof of need, than penalize every hard working American for having a fricken job.

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    Nope March 2

    If you don’t pay the penalty there is nothing the IRS can do to collect it other than deduct it from a refund (if you have one coming) Look into it. I just found this out!

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    FreebornPatriot February 13

    You said the right word about it….Communism, that it is! I myself have a college degree with certification as an educator and cannot find full time employment. When I went to this exchange they claimed that i owed 400.00 a month, just for this worthless crap that they pass for insurance. I only clear 1600 a month, for crying out loud. There is no check placed on what it is that these companies can demand through these exchanges. It is ridiculous…to say the least!

    Reply

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