Policy Documents

The Health Exchange Marriage Penalty

Devon Herrick –
November 7, 2013

Just as there are penalties in the tax code for couples who get married, financial penalties in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) also discourage couples from “tying the knot.” The ACA establishes state health insurance exchanges where qualifying individuals can purchase subsidized, individual health insurance, starting in October 2013.

However, the exchange subsidies are more generous to unmarried couples than to couples who marry.