Maryland to use tax forms to enroll residents in health insurance

In a first for the nation, Maryland will allow its residents to sign up for health insurance when they file their taxes in 2020, according to American University Radio station WAMU 88.5.

Under the measure, signed into law May 13 by Republican Gov. Larry Hogan, Maryland residents can check a box on their tax forms that will ask, "Are you insured now?" If residents check no and are eligible for Medicaid, residents will be automatically enrolled in the program unless they object.

Maryland predicts about 360,000 people in the state are uninsured, and possibly half of those residents may qualify for Medicaid or subsidized health insurance. Maryland officials predict the state's uninsured rate could drop from 6.1 percent to 4.1 percent after the 2020 tax season because of the measure, according to WAMU 88.5.

Residents who don't have health insurance when they file their taxes may face a $695 penalty, according to the report.

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