Friday, October 10, 2014

Not Easy To Opt Out of ObamaCare Mandate

Politico reports that it will be, "A maze to opt out of Obamacare individual mandate":
Tens of millions of Americans can avoid the fee if they qualify for exemptions like hardship or living in poverty, but the convoluted process has some experts worried individuals will be tripped up by lost paperwork, the need to verify information with multiple sources and long delays that extend beyond tax season.
Some gory details:
The uninsured have two ways to opt out: The easiest way is fill out a new tax form for those exemptions that don’t require Obamacare marketplace approval. Some will be simple, including the exemption for being uninsured for under three months or those living below a certain income — about $10,150 for singles and $20,300 for married couples.

But many must be approved by the marketplace, including for people citing religious beliefs, like being Amish, or those who qualify for the dozen or so “hardships,” such as being evicted, experiencing domestic violence or having a health plan canceled because it doesn’t meet the law’s requirements.
There’s even one for being in jail, another for having medical debt and one for taking care of sick family members. An open-ended “hardship” exemption lets people try to explain situations not listed that stood in their way of coverage.

That’s where things get complicated. For marketplace approval, applicants must fill out an exemption application, gather proof of their situation, mail it off and wait a few weeks for approval.
Once they get the exemption certification number in the mail, they then fill out a newly drafted tax form to skirt the penalty.

Some math may be required: If the exemption covers only a few months of the year, the individual is responsible for calculating how much of the penalty he or she will owe...
So just think of all the "fun" you have every April 15 preparing your taxes.  And double that!