The IRS has released the 2017 monthly national average premium for a bronze level health plan offered through the Health Insurance Marketplace, which is used to determine the maximum individual mandate penalty.
According to the new IRS guidance, the monthly national average premium for qualified health plans that have a bronze level of coverage and are offered through the Health Insurance Marketplace in 2017 is:
- $272 per individual (up from $223); and
- $1,360 for a family with five or more members (up from $1,115).
The guidance is effective for taxable years ending after December 31, 2016.
Calculating the Payment
The Affordable Care Act’s “individual mandate” provision requires every individual to have minimum essential health coverage for each month, qualify for an exemption, or make a penalty payment when filing his or her federal income tax return.
The annual penalty amount is either a percentage of an individual’s household income in excess of the return filing threshold or a flat dollar amount, whichever is greater. The maximum penalty is capped at the cost of the national average premium for a bronze level health plan available through the Marketplace. At this time, the 2017 inflation adjustment for the flat dollar amount penalty has not been announced.
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