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Americans may face higher penalties for not having insurance

Many people think they only have to pay a $95 penalty for not having insurance benefits this year, but National Public Radio reported fines may be higher.

Fox News reported health plan enrollment has not reached the level many in the federal government hoped for, and those without insurance may be facing larger penalties than they realize.

“I’d say the vast majority of people I’ve dealt with really believe that the penalty is only $95, if they know about it at all,” Brian Haile, senior vice president for health policy at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, told NPR. “And when people find out [it could be more], they’re stunned. It’s much, much higher than they would expect.”

Two-adult households where both people are uninsured could face a $190 fine, and if they have children it is even higher. This is because the penalty is either $95 or 1 percent of taxable income this year, so those with higher incomes could face much larger fees.

Brendon Buck, spokesman for the House Speaker, said low enrollment should prompt the government to postpone the penalty for this year.

“Given these dismal enrollment numbers, the president needs to work with Congress to get rid of this year’s individual mandate penalty,” Buck said, Fox News reported.

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Erin Woulfe
Erin Woulfe
Erin Woulfe likes to write about things that matter. Keeping her finger on the pulse of what’s happening in the public sector world, she blogs about the latest legislative news and employee benefit trends that affect our school, city and county clients. She’s been with NIS since 2002. “I love connecting to our clients and providing them with the tools they need in order to administrate their plan,” says Erin. “Whether that be materials to educate their employees on certain benefits, how to effectively communicate change within an organization or just providing tips and how-to’s to help them make their job easier.”

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