Is the Individual Mandate Really Mandatory?Submitted by father_abraham85 on Sat, 10/05/2013 - 21:09
By Jordan M. Barry and Bryan T. Camp
Published: June 25, 2012
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA) has been the center of a tremendous amount of controversy. The 2,400-page legislation’s most controversial provision requires most U.S. citizens to have ‘‘minimum essential coverage’’ — that is, a base level of health insurance coverage — for themselves and their dependents. That provision, which has been termed the ‘‘individual mandate,’’ is enforced through a penalty administered through the tax system and enforced by the IRS.
Ordinarily, the IRS has broad powers to collect taxes from taxpayers. However, because of the intense hue and cry surrounding the individual mandate, the PPACA’s drafters imposed specific limitations on the methods that the IRS can use to collect the tax penalty. Those provisions are not a model of clarity, and they have created considerable uncertainty about what, precisely, will happen to a taxpayer who refuses to pay the tax penalty.
This article addresses that issue...Continue
(Note: This Article was Published Three Days Prior to the U.S. Supreme Court Deciding P.P.A.C.A.'s Constitutionality.)