The Department of Revenue has approved a 2011 penalty schedule for those who are able to afford the purchase of health insurance but fail to do so. The Massachusetts Health Care Reform Act of 2006 requires most adults 18 and over with access to affordable insurance to obtain it, and requires DOR to announce a penalty schedule for individuals who do not comply with the law.
In all but two instances, the penalties will remain the same as for tax year 2010.
However, in the case of individuals ages 18 to 26 whose income exceeds $32,496, the penalty will increase $6 per month, to $864 annually; while in the case of individuals age 27 and older whose income exceeds $32,496, the penalty will increase $8 per month, to $1,212 annually.
The penalties are pegged to half the cost of the least expensive health plan available that is approved by the Health Connector Authority.
Individuals whose income is less than 150 percent of Federal Poverty Line (FPL) or $16,248 pay no penalty, while those between 150 percent and 300 percent of FPL will pay the same penalties as last year, since the cost of Commonwealth Care insurance for them has not risen.