Will You Go To Jail If You Don’t Buy Health Insurance? No.
Section 501 of the House bill imposes a tax of 2.5 percent of adjusted gross income. You are exempted from the tax if you already have qualifying health insurance from your employer, if you receive benefits from Medicare or Medicaid, if you are a dependent, if you are overseas, and if you have religions objections. You also get subsidies in the form of tax credits and tax deductions if your income is below a certain level; and if you are in poverty you are already exempted because you participate in Medicaid. If you are not exempted, and you don’t purchase health insurance, you just pay a higher tax. You don’t go to jail.
This should not be shocking considering the pattern of hyperbole from the defenders of the status quo.