The IRS is reminding people that the individual mandate still exists and that it must be paid and submitted with tax returns in 2015. Naturally, the individual mandate tax isn't being called the individual mandate tax. Instead, it's creepily being called the "shared responsibility tax." In other words, "you need to pay for other people's healthcare so Obamacare won't collapse" or "other people's health problems are now your problems, time to pay up." Americans for Tax Reform has the details:
President Obama’s Internal Revenue Service today quietly released a series of Obamacare “Health Care Tax Tips” warning Americans that they must obtain “qualifying” health insurance – as defined by the federal government – or face a “shared responsibility payment” when filing their tax returns in 2015. The term “shared responsibility payment” refers to the Obamacare individual mandate tax, one of at least seven tax hikes in the healthcare law that directly hit families making less than $250,000 per year.
In “Four Tax Facts about the Health Care Law for Individuals” the agency writes:
Your 2014 tax return will ask if you had insurance coverage or qualified for an exemption. If not, you may owe a shared responsibility payment when you file in 2015.
In “The Individual Shared Responsibility Payment- An Overview” the agency warns Americans they must prove they were covered each and every month of the year:
For any month in 2014 that you or any of your dependents don’t maintain coverage and don’t qualify for an exemption, you will need to make an individual shared responsibility payment with your 2014 tax return filed in 2015.
What this means is the IRS will be policing whether or not an individual has health insurance. If they don't, they must pay the tax. The IRS will also be looking at who has "Cadillac" health plans for further taxation.
My next bumper sticker: honk if I'm paying for your healthcare.