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Uninsured in Mass. face higher penalties in 2011

December 30, 2010

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BOSTON—Massachusetts residents who can afford health insurance but fail to buy it face steeper penalties in 2011.

A key element of the state's landmark 2006 health care law requires virtually all residents to have insurance. Those who remain uninsured face tax penalties if they are deemed able to afford coverage.

Starting in January anyone aged 27 and older who makes more than three times the federal poverty level -- about $32,500 annually -- faces penalties of $101 a month or $1,212 for the entire year. That's up from $93 a month or $1,116 annually in 2010.

Those aged 18-26 who also earn more than $35,000 annually face penalties of $72 per month or $864 annually, up from $66 a month or $792 annually in 2010.

There are no changes for those making less than three times the poverty level.