Affordable Care Act: What Employers Need to Know

The deadline for filing the new Affordable Care Act (ACA) forms with the IRS is quickly approaching. Here are five things employers need to know about the ACA:

1. Know if you are subject to the reporting requirements.

Are you a fully-insured employer with 50 or more full-time or full-time equivalent employees (union and non-union) in 2014? Then you are considered an applicable large employer and therefore have an ACA reporting requirement for 2015. If you have other entities under common control, the employee count is determined in aggregate.

Are you a self-insured employer? If so, you are subject to ACA reporting for 2015 regardless of the number of employees you had in 2014.

2. Know which forms you need to file.

Fully-insured employers file Forms 1094-C and 1095-C to report information to the IRS and to their employees about compliance with the minimum essential coverage mandate of the ACA.

Small self-insured employers (those employing less than 50 full-time or full-time equivalent employees in 2014) must file Forms 1094-B and 1095-B to report coverage information that employees will use to support that they satisfy the individual mandate. Self-insured employers who are also an applicable large employer must file Forms 1094-C and 1095-C instead of Forms 1094-B and 1095-B.

3. Know the due dates of the forms.

On December 28, 2015, the IRS extended the due dates for furnishing and filing the new Affordable Care Act reporting forms for the 2015 calendar year.

Forms 1095-B and 1095-C must be sent to employees by March 31, 2016. (For tax years 2016 and beyond, the deadline will be January 31 of the following year.)

If you are paper filing, all forms must be filed with the IRS by May 31, 2016. (For tax years 2016 and beyond, the deadline will be February 28 of the following year.)

If you electronically file the forms, the due date is June 30, 2016. (For tax years 2016 and beyond, the deadline will return to March 31 of the following year.) Electronic filing is required if filing 250 or more Forms 1095-B and 1095-C.

4. Know your game plan.

If you are subject to reporting, it is imperative that you have a plan in place for collecting and processing the required data. If your payroll provider does not offer preparation services to help you comply with the new reporting requirements, or if you handle payroll in-house, ensure that you have the right software in place to generate and compile the reportable data. Talk to your software provider – many offer an add-on module to assist in ACA reporting compliance.

5. Know how to communicate with your employees.

The 1095-B and 1095-C forms that employees receive list a resource that employees can contact with questions. Who will this person be? Avoid employee confusion by including a letter of explanation with each employee’s form.

Please contact your payroll or insurance provider if you are still unsure of your ACA reporting requirements or need guidance on meeting your reporting obligation. For additional information or inquiries, please contact Gina Perrone, CPA, MST at (973) 472-6250 or gperrone@bstco.com.


Posted on February 26, 2016 at 1:51 PM