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Understanding the ACA requirements for you

Now is the time to enroll in a Marketplace health insurance plan for 2015.  The open enrollment period to purchase health insurance coverage for 2015 through the Health Insurance Marketplace starts on Nov.15, 2014 and ends Feb. 15, 2015.

You can search the Marketplace for a plan that fits your needs.  You may qualify for financial assistance through the Premium Assistance Credit.

Visit the Department of Health and Human Services website at HealthCare.gov to learn more about coverage options, financial assistance and to enroll in coverage through the Marketplace.

If you get health insurance coverage through the Marketplace, you may be able to lower your monthly premium through an advance payment of the premium tax credit. This credit is for people who have household income between one and four times the federal poverty level.  You will calculate the 2014 credit on your federal tax return.  If you didn’t get the full benefit during the year you will get an additional refund; however if your premium assistance was too high you will owe the difference on your tax return.

Starting in 2014, if you don’t have health coverage you must either pay a fee or get an exemption from paying the fee.  This fee will also be paid on your federal tax return.

Your fee is calculated one of 2 ways. For 2015 you’ll pay the higher of these amounts:

  • 2% of your income; OR
  • $325 per adult ($162.50 per child; family maximum $975)

If you’re uncovered for only part of the year, you owe 1/12 of the annual penalty for each month you don’t have coverage.

The amount of the fee for not having health insurance coverage will be calculated when you file your federal tax return.  For 2014 the fee is 1% of income or $95 per adult ($47.50; family maximum $285).