While having health insurance can feel like a financial burden, not having health insurance will also take its toll on your bank account. If you are not covered, you will be fined when you file your taxes for the year you didn't have coverage. Here’s the breakdown of fines for uninsured adults:
- 2016 & 2017: 2.5% of total annual income or $695, whichever is higher.
*uninsured children under 18 are assessed at 50% of the minimum penalty
The fines are pro-rated, meaning that if you are uninsured for just part of the year, you will have to pay 1/12th of the penalty for each month you are uninsured.
There is also a grace period: If you are uninsured for less than two consecutive months of any year, you won’t have to pay a fine and may qualify for an exemption.
It is very important to note that paying the penalty does not mean you have health insurance coverage. You will still be responsible for 100% of the costs of your medical care.