If your employer offers you health insurance through the SHOP Marketplace, you can decline it. If you do, you have other health insurance options.
FYI We talk about 2 different insurance Marketplaces below:
- The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Marketplace. It’s the Marketplace your employer uses to offer you SHOP Marketplace coverage.
- The Health Insurance Marketplace for Individuals & Families. This is where people can buy insurance plans directly from an insurance company.
You can buy insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace for Individuals & Families instead of accepting your employer’s insurance offer. But there are important facts to consider:
Note: It’s against the law for your employer to punish or retaliate against you if you buy a plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace for Individuals & Families instead of accepting their plan. Learn more about your protections and non-retaliation.
You can buy a health insurance plan directly from an insurance company, through an agent or broker, or from an online seller.
If you buy a plan outside the Marketplace you can’t get a premium tax credit or other savings based on your income. Only plans offered through the Health Insurance Marketplace for Individuals & Families qualify for these savings.
If you don’t have qualifying health coverage for all or some months of the year, you may have to pay a penalty with your next federal tax return.
For example, if you don’t have coverage in 2016, you'd pay the higher of these two amounts:
For 2017, the amounts of the penalties will be even higher. Learn more about the penalty if you don’t have insurance coverage.