As we have been encouraging our DEC constituents to #SignUpB4TimesUp and obtain health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act, we also wanted to make you aware of some ACA tax implications that are new for this year. Please read on for messages from our friends at Community Catalyst about tax reconciliation, as well as a note from HealthCare.gov about 1095-A tax forms.
This year, for the first time, the Affordable Care Act will affect the tax-filing process for consumers – both those with insurance and those who are still uninsured. Consumers must either verify that they met the requirement to have health insurance in 2014 or claim an exemption, as well as report any amount of financial assistance received to help pay for their plan. In addition, those receiving a tax credit will determine through their tax return any over- or underpayment they may have received, and either make a repayment or receive a refund – a process called “reconciliation.”
Materials for Consumers
- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services (CMS) has new resources for consumers on the ACA and taxes. In particular, this tip sheet, fact sheet and tax checklist provide easy-to-remember steps on how to navigate tax-filing this year.
- The IRS released a new publication that provides an overview of the ACA’s tax-related provisions.
- For tax filers with immigration statuses, the National Immigration Law Center has created some helpful fact sheets on how to file taxes without a Social Security Number and how to apply for an exemption.
- Consumers who are interested in finding and learning more about free tax-return preparation assistance can visit the IRS’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program website.
Additionally, consumers who signed up for coverage through the Marketplace last year should have received a statement in the mail in February from the Marketplace called a Form 1095-A. This statement includes important information you need in order to complete and file your tax return. One piece of information included in the 1095-A is the premium amount for the “second lowest cost Silver plan” in their area. This premium amount represents the benchmark plan we use to determine the amount of premium tax credit they were eligible to receive.
About 20 percent of the tax filers who had Federally-facilitated Marketplace coverage in 2014 and used tax credits to lower their premium costs – about 800,000 people – will soon receive an updated Form 1095-A because the original version they were issued listed an incorrect benchmark plan premium amount.
Marketplace consumers concerned about the status of their 1095-A forms should take the following actions:
- You can find out if you are affected by logging in to your account at HealthCare.gov. You will see a notice message that will let you know if your form was or was not affected. A majority of tax filers with Marketplace coverage through HealthCare.gov that received a 1095-A– about 80 percent – will find that their form was not affected by this issue and will be able to file their taxes with their current form.
- Wait to file if your form was affected. It’s best to wait to file your tax return until you receive your corrected 1095-A Form from the Marketplaces. New forms are being sent from the Marketplace beginning in early March. When your corrected form is ready, we’ll also send a message to your Marketplace account on HealthCare.gov.
- If you need to file now, use our tool. If you can’t wait, and want to find the correct amount of the second lowest cost Silver plan that applied to your household in 2014, you have 2 options: 1) You can use this tool to find that amount, or 2) You can call the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596 (TTY: 1-855-889-4325) and they can help.