Mass. Gives More Health Insurance Exemptions

The agency that oversees Massachusetts' health insurance regulations last year granted exemptions and waived the penalty for nearly two-thirds of the people who said they could not afford the insurance as required by law.

Regulators say they granted waivers to 63 percent of the people who asked in 2010, up from 44 percent in 2009.

Officials with the Connector Authority, which oversees the law, tell the Boston Globe that most of the waivers were granted because the poor economy made insurance unaffordable.

The number of people seeking exemptions in 2010 was about the same as in 2009.

Consumers without an exemption face a tax penalty as high as $1,116 if they were uninsured for 2010.

Regulators considering a waiver request a formula that looks at income and other factors, including foreclosure.

This program aired on February 7, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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