With the passing of the ACA (Affordable Care Act), a significant health reform law, there has come many changes. The ACA affects all aspects of the health care system. Consumers, health care providers and insurance companies are affected.
The ACA requires that most individuals obtain health insurance coverage for themselves and their family members or they must pay a penalty. If you currently have an individual plan or by a government program such as Medicare, you can continue to be covered.
As of the 2016 tax season, the penalties for people without insurance are $695 per adult and $347.50 per child or 2% of your income (whichever is greater). Additionally you will have to pay 100% of your health care costs.
There are a very limited number of exceptions to the insurance mandate, mainly affecting non-citizens, American Indians, incarcerated individuals, religious objectors and people suffering from poverty or hardship. Exceptions are also available for people with short gaps in coverage of less than three months.