Average Fine For Noncompliance With ObamaCare Is $1130, Expert Testifies

As millions of Americans scramble to file their tax returns, many are shocked by the full cost of ObamaCare’s individual mandate.

“Those who failed to obtain minimum essential health insurance coverage last year will have had to send the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) a check for $1,130, on average,” Doug Holtz-Eakin, former director of the Congressional Budget Office, testified today before a congressional hearing.

An estimated 6.3 million people will be required to pay a penalty this year because they didn’t buy qualifying health insurance in 2014, Holtz-Eakin testified. Another 30 million people didn’t buy the mandated coverage either but won’t have to pay the penalty because of the myriad exemptions the Obama administration is allowing, with or without legal justification.

Holtz-Eakin, now president of the American Action Forum, based his calculations on the number of people who will pay the penalty and the average value of the penalty, using demographic information from the American Community Survey and enrollment statistics from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“In reality, the individual mandate has been less of a mandate and more of a suggestion,” he told the House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee, chaired by Rep. Kevin Brady, R-TX.

The latest exemption was for 900 Olympic athletes whose health insurance coverage didn’t meet the ObamaCare test. The Washington Post reported, “The health plan, known as the Elite Athlete Health Insurance Program, is a medical insurance plan offered only to TeamUSA’s top athletes and their dependents.

“Athletes have to qualify annually for the coverage based on their performance. The plan is similar to coverage offered through employers.”

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About the author

Grace-Marie Turner is president of the Galen Institute, a public policy research organization that she founded in 1995 to promote an informed debate over free-market ideas for health reform. Full biography