Last year’s filing season saw new rules and forms around health care coverage, and a significant number of taxpayers overpaid the ISRP. Reviews by the Taxpayer Advocate Service and the IRS found that more than 300,000 taxpayers overpaid their ISRP, totaling about $35 million through April 30, 2015. Part of the issue was people not checking to see if they qualified for an exemption from the payment before filing.
You experienced circumstances that prevented you from obtaining coverage under a qualified health plan (homelessness, eviction, foreclosure, domestic violence, death of a close family member, unpaid medical bills - these are known as hardship exemptions).
If the exemption is granted by the Marketplace, you will get a code - an Exemption Certificate Number or ECN. You will put that code on the IRS Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions, and file it with your federal tax return. You will use the same form to claim exemptions offered by the IRS.
As with any tax form, double-check your information before filing.