When something online sounds fishy, a lot of people go to Snopes.com to see if it is fact or myth. I was looking up some informaiton on exemptions from Obamacare and stumbled upon a Snopes.com articles about it. The final answer says “mixture,” but they’ve pulled some valuable information.
I’ve encountered a Christian group that is claiming exemption from Obamacare, so it can be done, but there are some rules. And it sounds like my idea to develop a new religion specifically to opt-out won’t work. Here are the ‘facts’ from Snopes:
The fact is that the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” (PPACA) legislation passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama does not includelanguage which specifically exempts members of any particular religion from healthinsurance requirements (nor does it use the word “dhimmitude”). The bill contains ageneral “religious conscience” provision which establishes guidelines under whichreligious groups which have established conscientious objections to certain forms ofinsurance may seek exemption from health insurance requirements:
Internal Revenue Code, whichgoverns exemptions from the payment of Social Security and Medicare taxes on selfemploymentincome:
(g) Members of certain religious faiths(1) ExemptionAny individual may file an application (in such form and manner, and withsuch official, as may be prescribed by regulations under this chapter) for anexemption from the tax imposed by this chapter if he is a member of arecognized religious sect or division thereof and is an adherent ofestablished tenets or teachings of such sect or division by reason of whichhe is conscientiously opposed to acceptance of the benefits of any private orpublic insurance which makes payments in the event of death, disability,old-age, or retirement or makes payments toward the cost of, or providesservices for, medical care (including the benefits of any insurance systemestablished by the Social Security Act). Such exemption may be grantedonly if the application contains or is accompanied by -(A) such evidence of such individual’s membership in, and adherence to thetenets or teachings of, the sect or division thereof as the Secretary mayrequire for purposes of determining such individual’s compliance with thepreceding sentence, and(B) his waiver of all benefits and other payments under titles II and XVIII ofthe Social Security Act on the basis of his wages and self-employmentincome as well as all such benefits and other payments to him on the basisof the wages and self-employment income of any other person, and only ifthe Commissioner of Social Security finds that -(C) such sect or division thereof has the established tenets or teachingsreferred to in the preceding sentence,(D) it is the practice, and has been for a period of time which he deems tosnopes.com: Health Insurance Exemptionshttp://www.snopes.com/politics/medical/exemptions.asp[4/18/2011 5:55:49 PM]be substantial, for members of such sect or division thereof to makeprovision for their dependent members which in his judgment is reasonablein view of their general level of living, and(E) such sect or division thereof has been in existence at all times sinceDecember 31, 1950.An exemption may not be granted to any individual if any benefit or otherpayment referred to in subparagraph (B) became payable (or, but forsection 203 or 222(b) of the Social Security Act, would have become
payable) at or before the time of the filing of such waiver.