Question: What is the penalty for not having health insurance after January 1, 2014.
Answer: The individual mandate taxes will be pretty weak as they are phased in over two years — only $95 per adult in 2014 and growing to $395 in 2015, much less than it costs to buy insurance. There is a practical reason for the mandate, which starts next year, it was supposed to pull in enough healthy customers to help pay for all the sick people who will get coverage as everyone with pre-existing conditions will have to be accepted for coverage right away. That’s why insurance companies are saying the mandate won’t be enough for the first two years. They want more incentives — such as a late enrollment fee — to get healthy people to sign up quickly. Without getting the healthy folks in, the fear is that everyone’s health insurance premiums could shoot through the roof when all those sick people get their coverage.