Health care reform

Here's What ObamaCare's Individual Mandate Tax Form Could Look Like

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Barring repeal, ObamaCare's individual mandate will kick into effect in 2014. Under the provision, judged legal as a tax by the Supreme Court earlier this year, anyone who doesn't maintain qualifying health insurance will eventually have to pay of penalty of between $695 and $2085, an amount that will grow over time and depend on family size. And those who pay it will do so via their annual tax returns.

The folks at Americans for Tax Reform have mocked up a version of the tax form over at ObamaCareTaxForm.com. The eventual form published by the Internal Revenue Service will, of course, look different. But what's instructive about this one is that it highlights some of the information those who fill it out will have to provide. For example, ObamaCare requires that individuals maintain coverage for each month of the tax year in order to fully avoid the penalty, as well as information about their own insurance provider and, if different, their spouse's.

And while it doesn't appear on the form, ATR also notes that the mandate will be subject to the usual IRS penalties and interests if not paid. "Because the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate penalty is a tax, the IRS will be able to assess interest and non-criminal penalties on those families who will not or cannot pay the tax."

You can see ATR's form after the jump. 

Wolf Final

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  1. I swear to God, if the Republicans don’t sweep the Congress and repeal this piece of shit, I’m moving to Somalia.

    1. I’m pretty sure they’ll have both houses and the White House, so they’d better fucking repeal the law. Because we can keep doing this over and over again.

      1. For me, it’ll be the nail in the coffin if the Republican Party of the United States doesn’t buttfuck the law out of existence during Romney’s first term. Period.

        If they’ve fallen that far, it’s all over.

      2. Wow, you think they’ll take the senate? You are far more confidant than I.

        1. I think they have a chance, if they don’t fuck it up monumentally. It simply must be done.

        2. Yes, I think they will. Maybe not a 60-seat majority, but they can likely get rid of Obamacare without that, now that it’s a tax-a-penis or whatever.

          1. But if they use reconciliation to remove Obamacare they’re subverting democracy and are bullying the minority party! If they can’t beat a Democratic minority that is using the noble, noble filibuster, they should compromise.

            1. I almost hope that it happens that way, just for the laughs.

      3. Wow, you think they’ll actually repeal it? You are far more confident than I.

        1. Time to increase the dosage Mary

          1. No, I’m not Mary. And I’m serious. I don’t trust the author of Romneycare to repeal Obamacare. He’s already backtracking on it, saying he’ll keep the “popular” parts of the law, saying he’ll “replace” it, etc. I don’t see an actual repeal happening. I don’t trust the fuckers.

            1. Shit, way to depress the fuck out of me. I know that’s the way it may go, but I’m hoping a significant enough part of the Republican Party forces Romney into full repeal, whether or not he wants it.

            2. Romney wants to keep the pre-existing conditions clause, which sucks big time.

            3. I don’t see an actual repeal happening. I don’t trust the fuckers.

              Romney doesn’t want to repeal it. It appeals to his technocratic impulses. He will want to be a two term president. That means giving as little excuse as he can for the Democrats to hate on him.

              The scenario where the normally servile Republican leadership chooses grow a spine and permit a significant primary challenge to motivate Romney to do the right thing strikes me as being very unlikely.

              1. If he does push for repeal, he’ll do it right away. If not, then those factors will quickly come into play.

  2. I thought Congress had neutered the IRS’s ability to collect the penaltax?

    1. Rest assured a fix is coming.

    2. My understanding is that they can’t take you to court and–convict you in criminal court for tax evasion–for not paying the penalty.

      But the IRS doesn’t bother convicting you in criminal court before it starts garnishing your wages. I think it can still do that.

      And even if they were just harassing you for it, what makes it okay for the Obama Administration to mandate that the IRS harass newly unemployed people, who decided they’d rather try to save their home than buy health insurance this year?

      It’s really mean when you think about it. “Let me be clear”, Obama says, “We won’t let them throw anyone in jail. But let’s use the IRS to harass the hell out of newly unemployed people!”

      Why does the Obama Administration have to be so mean to people?

      1. But the IRS doesn’t bother convicting you in criminal court before it starts garnishing your wages. I think it can still do that.

        Could possibly affect your credit rating.

        1. Yeah!

          Getting garnished doesn’t make the boss think much of you either. It could get you unemployed–I don’t want someone who’s getting garnished handling my money. And I don’t want to hassle with the paperwork of dealing with his IRS problems either!

          Oh, and for all we know? Failing to pay your income tax could be a parole violation. I can’t imagine why a parole officer would see that as a good thing.

    3. Um, no. Not sure where you heard that, but Congress hasn’t “neutered” anything yet.

      1. It was in the Supreme Court ruling.

        You can’t throw someone in jail for not paying the mandate, apparently…

        But throwing people in jail isn’t the only awful thing the IRS can do to you.

        Garnishing people’s wages alone can be devastating to the working poor. …and they can do a lot worse than that, too–without ever taking you to criminal court.

        1. Oh, wow! I finally found that part of the Constitution authorizing the establishment of the IRS! Totally! It’s right there, between HERPA DERPA DERP and HURRRRRRRRRR.

          Any chance it gets abolished within our lifetimes?

          1. The Constitution? Sure we can get it abolished. In fact outside of a few phrases Necessary and proper, regulate commerce and general welfare it mostly is. Why do you ask?

            1. I was referring to the IRS, but now that you bring it up, the Constitution is the likelier one to die off, isn’t it?

          2. The Constitution? I’d say it’s more likely than not.

            1. Well played, Herr Doktor.

          3. It pains me to say it, but with the 16th Amendment in place the IRS seems like a correct application of the Necessary and Proper clause.

  3. The way the Obamacare law relating to individual mandate was written, the only enforcement mechanism the IRS has to collect the penalty/tax is to deduct it from any overpayment refunds due to the taxpayer.

    So all one has to do to avoid paying the penalty is adjust their witholding allowances and/or estimated tax payments to ensure that there is never any tax overpayments to be refuded and the IRS will not be able to collect the penalty.

    1. Its an interesting question, actually. The statute is written as if the penaltax is purely a penalty, and not a tax, and lays out what the IRS can do to collect the penalty.

      Roberts, however, converted the penalty to a tax. Does this mean that the usual enforcement and collection provisions that the IRS has for taxes are available for the penaltax? Why not? Its a tax now, isn’t it?

      This will wind up back in the courts, with the courts in a bind. The statute says one thing, but SCOTUS says another. What to do, what to do?

      1. Repeal, maybe?

      2. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:

        Roberts should be pelted with filth anytime he pokes his head out in public.

      3. I would say that the Supreme Court calling it a tax rather than a penalty does not automatically change the specific enforcement mechanism in the statute from the what was actually written there.

        Congress would have to actually pass legistation to amend the law to alter that aspect of it.

        1. Well, you’d think Congress would have to pass legislation to amend the law to alter it’s unconstitutionally too, but apparently that’s not the case.

        2. It doesn’t change the enforcement mechanism in the statute, but it may open the door for the ordinary tax enforcement mechanisms to be used.

      4. Actually Roberts CITED the lack of enforcement mechanisms as his reason for saying that it was a tax, not a mandate.

        His argument was that congres doens’t have the power to regulate this behavior, but taxes aren’t coercive, so if you have the option of simply paying the tax, you aren’t really being regulated.

        Of course, this argument is totally crap on a number of levels, but if SCOTUS says “it’s only a tax because you aren’t really being coerced into doing something”, and then Congress starts making it coercive, then they would be violating the Supreme Courts ruling.

        1. I really doubt Roberts is going to suddenly grow balls if the IRS starts being his definition of “coercive” to uninsured people.

          Also, he apparently things poll taxes aren’t coercive.

        2. Actually Roberts CITED the lack of enforcement mechanisms as his reason for saying that it was a tax, not a mandate.

          I haven’t checked today, but as I recall, his argument was more or less that the “penalty” lacked the kind of enforcement mechanisms you generally associate with fines and other penalties. I don’t recall him actually saying that it would stop being a tax if it were collected just like any other tax.

    2. Even if you can get away with avoiding the tax, all that does is leave you with the choice between having no insurance or an Obamacare approved plan. I doubt any insurance company is going to offer any plan that isn’t an approved plan, like ‘catastrophic only’ coverage.

      1. But Obama said if you like your insurance you can keep it! Oh that’s right, catastrophic only coverage “isn’t” insurance.

        1. From a quick calculation, I think the penaltax+what I pay would still be cheaper than a qualifying plan.

          I have a friend I might send an invoice to when I get my penaltax.

  4. When will GitHub be mandated to start a repository for an extension to TurboTax to handle this?

  5. This has to be a joke. Only two pages? The real form and instructions will undoubtedly be at least 50 pages, likely more.

    1. Don’t be ridiculous. I sense triple-digit page counts coming our way, dude.

  6. “Anyone who doesn’t maintain qualifying health insurance will eventually have to pay of penalty of between $695 and $2085, an amount that will grow over time and depend on family size. And those who pay it will do so via their annual tax returns.”

    Yeah, and those of you who just couldn’t cough it up?

    It compounds with interest like everything else you don’t pay, right?

    They’re not keeping what you owe and didn’t pay–and compounding the interest only on the part that wasn’t attributable to the individual mandate.

    No way!

    So, yeah, the FIRST YEAR is between $695 and $2085, but if you keep adding to that total, the interest will compound, and that total will rise.

  7. “10. Are you an illegal immigrant and therefore exempt from the personal mandate? (See Instructions…”

    That made me laugh in a so sad its funny way…

    1. It’s a trap, it’s a trap!

  8. The IRS better make that Obamacare Individual Mandate, Form OBMA Schedule FU, more readable or I’m not filling it out.

  9. The GOP WILL NOT repeal this even if they have a majority in both houses and a GOP POTUS. If they even attempt it, which they won’t outside of empty rhetoric, then the airwaves will be flooded with a tsunami of adds depicting the dead bodies of women and children in the streets with SUVs displaying Romney/Ryan stickers, driving over them.

    1. Not only that but…The markets already have Obamacare priced in to the value of health insurance companies. A repeal might cause their stocks to plunge, and we can’t have any of that.

      1. I would imagine that the cronies in line to cash in on this, people who have read the bill unlinke our congress critters, and see $$$ up for grabs, probably would stretch around the world a few times. After the cronyism sets in, it’s all over for repeal.

  10. OT: Afghanistan’s 1st female rapper

    In her first music video recently released on YouTube, Firooz appeared in Western style clothing and jewelry ? headscarf notably absent.

    But pushing the envelope and breaking from Afghanistan’s conservative cultural norms does not come without a price. Some members of her family have disowned her and she has faced numerous death threats. Her father quit his job so that he can protect her around the clock.

    She is already more gangsta than 99% of American rappers today.

    1. If there is any aspect of western culture that Afghans want to adopt, that is the one that I would advise against, first.

      1. threadwinner. funny as hell.

    2. You know what would be really badass? If she migrated to the US, became a gun fanatic, and joined Reason’s commentariat.

      1. She’s not bad looking at all.

        Any Reasonoids willing to sponsor her for a marriage visa?

        1. Before I got married, I was talking to an Afghan woman online for a few days. She was really hot looking, at least her pictures because I never met her in person since she turned out to be a little strange… ok more than a little strange, scary strange, like someone who might wind up stalking you and killing your family strange.

  11. An idiot supporter of this thing finds a nasty flaw- surprise, surprise you massive schmuck:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/…..17058.html

    1. That law is even more convoluted and screwed up than I thought it was.

  12. Suderman’s alt-text and photo selection warms my cold, stony, monocle wearing soul.

    1. You are welcome.

  13. I think people will go nuts when they start getting pink slips because of Obamacare. He didn’t promise you’d get to keep your job.

    1. Hey, that reminds me: aren’t WARN Act notices due to the sequester supposed to start hitting mailboxes this week?

      I was talking to big-time employment law muckety-muck. He said there was no way he would advise any of his clients to hold off on sending the notices, despite what the administration said.

  14. You can’t throw someone in jail for not paying the mandate, apparently…

    And the IRS will never play any “first dollar / last dollar” games in order to skim the ZeroCare payments off the top and then go after the hapless stooges for criminal nonpayment of income tax.

    That would never happen.

    1. That’s the kind of thing that evil banks due with credit card bills. Our benevolent government wouldn’t do that, and if they did, the same politicians that criticize/regulate banks will sure step in and stop the IRS from doing it.

  15. What Ken Shultz said above. Most people would consider food, clothing, and shelter more important to their HEALTH than health insurance, and if their circumstances require a choice, will choose rationally.

    1. Lies.

      We all know that contraception is the very BREAD OF LIFE!

      To say otherwise is WAR ON WOMEN!

      1. Did you know that if women don’t take the pill, they die?

      2. Free tampons are vital.

        WE’RE ALL LEAKY WOMEN NOW.

  16. A “senior editor” and you use the phrase ObamaCare? How about calling it what it is and becoming a bit more professional. You’ve certainly whipped up the partisans into a frenzy, but if you are attempting to influence anyone but them, this is not the path.

    1. Are you here to exacerbate people’s lively detestation of the usurper-in-chief even further by bitching about how mean the writer’s being to him, or are you just new here?

    2. Obama uses that phrase too.

      1. Yeah, but he’s black so it’s OK. Obamacare is HIS word!

    3. Quick! Someone get a fainting couch for Mr. Crawford!

    4. Quick, what’s the current insurance model for Massachusetts called? Or the one that Dems tried to implement during the Clinton administration? No googling allowed.

    5. A “senior editor” and you use the phrase ObamaCare?

      Why not? “Medicaid” is technically known as “Title XIX”, and nobody complains. I’m pretty sure you won’t find the term “Medicare” in the statute, either, although I’ve never checked.

    6. Ha, this reminds me of the time someone on YouTube called me out for saying “Nazism” rather than “National Socialism” as being “unprofessional”. Heh, good times.

    7. I thought Obama was proud of ObamaCare!

      Now he’s ashamed?

      Now he doesn’t want to be associated with it?

  17. How about calling it what it is

    BULLSHIT?

    1. A mephitic article of a petty tyrant’s legislative agenda intended to further the subjugation of a once-free and prosperous people?

    2. Universal Slavery?

  18. The funniest thing about this Obamacare debacle… well, ok, there is nothing really funny about it, but if there was, I think it would be the number of young people, college age, who believe that they are going to get free health care. What happens when they graduate, pass that magical 26th birthday when the government apparently no longer finds them to be ‘adult children’ and get their first job? Then they not only find out that they are not getting anything free, but are actually going to subsidize other peoples health care with a mandatory high insurance premium, or pay a penaltax?

    Maybe the plan is that there are 0 jobs for new college graduates and that is how they get their free healthcare?

  19. Democrats & Friends managed to take a ridiculously over-expensive, unwieldy, cartelized, bureaucratic nightmare – the US health care system – and make it more ridiculously over-expensive, unwieldy, cartelized, and bureaucratic.

    Medicare for all or a free market, but dear God, spare us any more “reform”.

    1. Sorry, JP, its reform all the way down.

    2. When it comes to the government, you can just replace the word reform with FUBAR.

      I know when they talk about immigration reform it makes me wince and be very thankful that I got my wife’s visa application processed before they ‘reform’ anything. As fucked up as the process is now, I can’t even imagine what a nightmare they can, and with certainty will, create to take its place.

  20. young people, college age, who believe that they are going to get free health care.

    It doesn’t matter if your employer is siphoning off a few hundred buck a month from your paycheck, if you can walk out of the gynecologist’s office without writing a check! It’s free!

    1. The ability of the government to withhold from your paycheck before you see the money is a huge part of the problem.

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