ObamaCare Mandate’s Fee Reduced to $0 (Some States Have Their Own Fee)
The Individual Mandate‘s fee has been reduced to $0 at a federal level starting in 2019. However, some states have their own individual mandate and fee.
Sometimes you will hear that “the fee has been repealed,” or that “the mandate has been repealed,” or even that “ObamaCare has been repealed.” None of that is technically true. What is true is that the fee was reduced to $0 starting in 2019 on the federal level (and thus the ACA’s individual shared responsibility provision and fee were in effect repealed this way).
Semantics aside, this means unless your state has its own mandate/fee, you won’t owe the fee for not having coverage in 2019 and beyond. Of course, this also means that there will be a lack of incentive to get health insurance and a lack of income for the government to balance the cost of the ACA.
An Updated List of States With Their Own Mandate
States that have their own mandate for 2023 include: California, the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Vermont (mandate, but no fee for Vermont).
States considering a mandate for the future: Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, and Washington.
NOTE: State mandates are subject to change, please make sure you understand your responsibilities as a taxpayer before choosing to enroll or not.
Bottomline: The mandate is still in effect, there is just no penalty for not complying for 2019 forward unless your state has its own mandate.
How Much is the fee for not having coverage? The fee differs by state. Although most states with mandates use a very similar penalty to the previous federal mandate, it is important to note that state mandates are subject to change and states are subject to unique rules (see some examples of rules on eHealth). Please make sure you understand your responsibilities as a taxpayer in your state before choosing to enroll or not. You can see more details on UnifyHR.
FACT: The change to the mandate was part of the tax reform bill signed into law by President Trump on Dec. 22, 2017. The change essentially repeals the ACA’s individual shared responsibility provision on a federal.