Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the individual shared responsibility provision, also referred to as the individual mandate, calls for each individual to have minimum essential health coverage (known as minimum essential coverage), qualify for an exemption, or make an individual shared responsibility payment when filing his or her federal income tax return. The individual mandate applies to individuals of all ages, including children. Therefore, an adult or married couple who can claim a child or another individual as a dependent for federal income tax purposes is responsible for making the payment if the dependent does not have coverage or an exemption.
The individual mandate became effective on January 1, 2014 and applies again to each month in calendar year 2015. If you and your dependents have minimum essential coverage for each month of 2015, you will indicate that by checking a box on your 2015 federal income tax return. If you qualify for an exemption, you are required to attach a form to your tax return to claim that exemption. If you do not have minimum essential coverage for each month of 2015 and are required to make the individual shared responsibility payment, the payment is calculated and made with your tax return.