The claim by the Joint Committee on Taxation that the health care mandate penalty was not enforceable by the IRS made a lot of news, but that claim made no sense to me.
The Senate bill (at p. 336) says that the health care mandate penalty “shall be assessed and collected in the same manner as an assessable penalty under subchapter B of chapter 68.”
Chapter 68B is part of subtitle F, so it made no sense to me why the JCT said (at p. 37) “The penalty is assessed through the Code and accounted for as an additional amount of Federal tax owed. However, it is not subject to the enforcement provisions of subtitle F of the Code.”
Not being a tax lawyer, I was hesitant to go out on a limb and say the JCT was flat out wrong, but I feel a little more comfortable now saying the JCT was wrong because some tax professors agree with my assessment that the JCT was wrong.
While there are some limitations on collection procedures, the mandate is enforceable by the IRS.