Fun Fact of the Day: Justin Bieber and the ACA


Justin Bieber is a Canadian citizen and reportedly wants remain so because of the Canadian health care system.*  So, does he have to adhere to the ACA’s individual mandate? 

Yes, if Mr. Bieber is a resident alien for federal income tax purposes, which typically occurs when a noncitizen stays in the U.S. for more than 31 days per year.  And his Canadian coverage likely won’t cut it: it may not constitute minimum essential coverage under the IRS’s penalty rules.  Like many “young invincibles,” he’ll owe a penalty unless he buys insurance for the year.  However, his penalty won’t be almost 1% of his income as will be the case for most uninsured Americans.  Rather, his penalty is capped at about $1,370 (the national average cost of a bronze plan for the 19-year-old Mr. Bieber).  That must be a relief to Mr. Bieber given his estimated earnings of $55 million in 2012!

* Grigoriadis, Vanessa, “Justin Bieber: Super Boy”,
Rolling Stone , February 2011, available at , accessed February 19, 2014.