Members of recognized healthcare sharing ministries are exempt from the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate, which is the requirement that every American purchase health insurance or face penalties. Under the law, by March 31st, you must purchase health insurance, be exempt, or face a fine imposed and collected by the IRS.
Healthcare sharing is an acceptable option to meet the ACA individual mandate for health cost coverage. In other words, being a member of a recognized healthcare sharing ministry removes your requirement to purchase health insurance.
In order to be considered a healthcare sharing ministry, federal regulations require the organization to submit information to Health and Human Services proving the organization meets the standards specified in the law. In November 2013, Liberty HealthShare submitted information showing we comply with the ACA's five requirements for recognition as a healthcare sharing ministry. For a chart comparing the ACA’s definition of a healthcare sharing ministry and Liberty HealthShare, click here.
The process for members to secure their exemption has now been defined. It’s as simple as this: individual taxpayers will use a special form when filing 2014 taxes (on or before April 15, 2015) to notify the IRS that they are a member of Liberty HealthShare. The IRS will then issue an exempt certificate to confirm they are exempt from the "shared responsibility payment" (penalty).
If you have any questions concerning exemptions from the ACA, please feel free to call us at 855-585-4237. One of our staff members will be happy to help you.