IRS Will Be Enforcing the Individual Mandate

November 10, 2017

Despite uncertainty regarding the Affordable Care Act ("ACA"), the IRS will be enforcing the individual mandate in 2018. Under the ACA, taxpayers are required to specifically state if they had health coverage, but since its enactment several million taxpayers skip over that question and file “silent” returns. Recently the IRS released a new policy saying that the health insurance question must be answered going forward. The agency will automatically reject electronic returns for 2017 that don’t specify if the taxpayer had health coverage. With paper returns, processing may be suspended and refunds delayed if the question is not answered. Failure to carry coverage can result in a fine of $695 or 2.5% of the taxpayer’s income, whichever is greater.

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