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Most people must have health coverage or pay a fee (also known as “the penalty,” the “individual shared responsibility payment,” or the “individual mandate”). Under some circumstances, you won’t have to make the payment. This is called an “exemption.”

Exemptions from the payment

If you don’t have minimum essential coverage, you may qualify for an exemption from the penalty if any of the following apply to you. Learn how to apply for any of these exemptions.

  • You’re uninsured for less than 3 months of the year
  • The lowest-priced coverage available to you would cost more than 8% of your household income
  • You don’t have to file a tax return because your income is too low (Learn about the filing limit (PDF))
  • You’re a member of a federally recognized tribe or eligible for services through an Indian Health Services provider
  • You’re a member of a recognized health care sharing ministry
  • You’re a member of a recognized religious sect with religious objections to insurance, including Social Security and Medicare
  • You’re incarcerated (either detained or jailed), and not being held pending disposition of charges
  • You’re not lawfully present in the U.S.
  • You qualify for a hardship exemption. Learn more about hardship exemptions.

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