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Obama administration issues regulations for individual mandate

Posted by on Jan. 30, 2013 at 2:09 PM
  • 7 Replies


The Obama administration took new steps Wednesday toward implementing the individual mandate in its signature healthcare law, downplaying the scope of the unpopular provision by stressing rules that allow exemptions from the requirement to purchase insurance.

The Internal Revenue Service and the Health and Human Services Department emphasized exceptions to the mandate, which were detailed in new regulations that also laid out the process by which the IRS will calculate penalties for going uninsured.

The mandate requires most taxpayers to either buy insurance or pay a fine to the IRS. It's one of the most politically unpopular provisions of the healthcare law, and was at the core of last year's historic Supreme Court case over the healthcare law.

HHS referred to the politically charged provision as a system of "shared responsibility" payments.

The mandate penalty "applies only to the limited group of taxpayers who choose to spend a substantial period of time without coverage despite having ready access to affordable coverage," HHS said in a fact sheet on the new rules.

The same fact sheet also noted findings from the Congressional Budget Office that less than 2 percent of the American public will have to make a payment under the mandate.

In 2014, people who choose not to buy insurance and don't quality for an exemption from the mandate will have to pay a fine of $95. The penalty increases to $695 by 2016, and then rises annually based on a pre-determined formula.

Although conservatives have railed against the mandate since Obama adopted it in 2009, some policy experts are concerned that it's too weak to work — that it won't be an effective incentive for young, healthy people to buy insurance.

Still, HHS and the IRS chose to focus on exceptions as they implemented the mandate Wednesday. 

The Affordable Care Act includes exceptions for people with religious objections to traditional healthcare services, as well as a slew of income-related carve-outs.

"A principle in implementing the individual shared responsibility provision is that the shared responsibility payment should not apply to any taxpayer for whom coverage is unaffordable, who has other good cause for going without coverage, or who goes without coverage for only a short time," HHS said.

People who do not make enough money to pay federal income taxes aren't subject to the mandate, and neither are people for whom coverage would be unaffordable, as defined by the healthcare law. For employer-based coverage to meet the law's definition of affordability, it can't cost more than 9 percent of an employee's salary.

Undocumented immigrants aren't subject to the mandate, since they're ineligible for government assistance to help buy healthcare coverage. 

HHS also clarified in the new rules that short gaps in coverage won't trigger the coverage requirement — meaning people who are temporarily unemployed won't have to pay a fine for losing their health coverage between jobs.

Anyone who had insurance for one day of a month will count as having coverage for the whole month, HHS said.

by on Jan. 30, 2013 at 2:09 PM
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Replies (1-7):
Veni.Vidi.Vici.
by on Jan. 30, 2013 at 2:11 PM
1 mom liked this

DO you have an objection to this information? I find it clear and unbiased and now I'm worried about you!

12hellokitty
by Platinum Member on Jan. 30, 2013 at 2:19 PM



Quoting candlegal:



"A principle in implementing the individual shared responsibility provision is that the shared responsibility payment should not apply to any taxpayer for whom coverage is unaffordable, who has other good cause for going without coverage, or who goes without coverage for only a short time," HHS said.



Can one of the left wingers explain this....


going crazy

candlegal
by Judy on Jan. 30, 2013 at 4:17 PM

So you don't think that those that can't afford it will get it anyway at the expense of everyone else?  Including all the illegals they are trying to make legal.

Quoting Veni.Vidi.Vici.:

DO you have an objection to this information? I find it clear and unbiased and now I'm worried about you!


TranquilMind
by Platinum Member on Jan. 30, 2013 at 4:41 PM

LOL at  "The mandate penalty "applies only to the limited group of taxpayers who choose to spend a substantial period of time without coverage despite having ready ACCESS to health care insurance""

Ready access is not the same as "able to afford".  NO ONE voluntarily goes without health care.  They go without if they can't afford it.  This stupid, moronic Act did absolutely NOTHING to affect the cost of health care; it only applies penalties like a mafia goon if you don't get some, whether or not you can afford it.

 

 

yourspecialkid
by Platinum Member on Jan. 30, 2013 at 4:45 PM
1 mom liked this

 LOL!  So those already not paying their fair share and the illegals will get theirs for free.  The wealthy can afford theirs..........so...the middle class gets screwed...again.

 

kailu1835
by Ruby Member on Jan. 30, 2013 at 4:48 PM
3 moms liked this

Yes it did... it raised it.

Quoting TranquilMind:
This stupid, moronic Act did absolutely NOTHING to affect the cost of health care;




babiesbabybaby development

stormcris
by Christy on Jan. 30, 2013 at 4:58 PM
1 mom liked this

I know this wasn't directed at me but no I don't. Those they are referring to who cannot afford it are making too much money to receive medicaid. If they could get medicaid they would already have it and thus this would not apply to them. This is for the lower to mid middle class as per poverty levels.

Quoting candlegal:

So you don't think that those that can't afford it will get it anyway at the expense of everyone else?  Including all the illegals they are trying to make legal.

Quoting Veni.Vidi.Vici.:

DO you have an objection to this information? I find it clear and unbiased and now I'm worried about you!



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