November 15,2017

Press Contact:

202-224-4515, Katie Niederee and Julia Lawless

The Obamacare Individual Mandate Tax is Failing the American People

Time to Provide Real Relief to Hardworking Americans

Obamacare’s individual mandate forces Americans to purchase health insurance, even if they cannot afford or do not want it, or face a steep and punitive tax. Included in Chairman Hatch’s modified mark of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is the repeal of Obamacare’s burdensome individual mandate tax.

Here’s how the policy is failing Americans: 

FACT: Obamacare Penalties Hurt Low-Income Americans

  • According to the IRS, nearly 80 percent of American households that pay Obamacare’s individual mandate penalty make less than $50,000 per year.

  • This year, the tax for not purchasing insurance is 2.5 percent of household income, or $695 per adult, whichever is greater, up to $2,085. 

  • Obamacare premiums are so high that millions of Americans were forced to pay this fine rather than pay thousands of dollars for coverage that doesn’t fit their needs. 

FACT: The Individual Mandate Hasn’t Worked

  • The way the individual mandate tax has been implemented has failed to expand the insurance pool adequately, meaning healthier, younger Americans are left to foot much of the bill for rising healthcare costs and premiums. 

FACT: The Individual Mandate Is Unpopular

  • The majority of Americans have an unfavorable view of Obamacare’s individual mandate tax.
  • 63 percent view the individual mandate somewhat or very unfavorably. 


According to the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT), reducing the individual mandate penalty to zero will raise $318 billion over 10 years – money that can be used to provide further tax relief to middle-class American families. Hatch, a long-time opponent of Obamacare, has introduced legislation to fully repeal both the individual and employer mandates included in Obamacare. Last Congress, he successfully fought to have some of the most egregious parts of Obamacare delayed. 

A copy of the chairman’s modified mark can be found here.

A score of the modified mark may be found here

11.15 obamacare mandate graphic