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IRS extends the due dates for certain ACA 2019 reporting requirements

Delayed from January 31 to March 20

Posted December 9, 2019

Employers received a gift in early December from the IRS, when the agency delayed the requirement for distributing Form 1095-C (Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage) and Form 1095-B (Health Coverage), to full-time employees for the 2019 tax year. The deadline, required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), was delayed from January 31 to March 20, 2020.

As an additional bonus, the IRS will, again, not impose a penalty for delaying reporting or reporting incorrect or incomplete information. Employers need to show that they made good-faith efforts to comply with the reporting requirements, both for furnishing forms to individuals (including employees) and for filing them with the IRS. This relief applies to missing and inaccurate taxpayer identification numbers and dates of birth, as well as other information. It does not apply for failure to provide the information.

Employers will not be penalized for failing to furnish Forms 1095-B to employees if the following two conditions are met:

  • First, the employer posts a notice prominently on its website stating that responsible individuals may receive a copy of their 2019 Form 1095-B upon request, accompanied by an email address and a physical address to which a request may be sent, as well as a telephone number that responsible individuals can use to contact the reporting entity with any questions.
  • Second, the employer furnishes a 2019 Form 1095-B to any responsible individual upon request within 30 days of the date the request is received.

This relief, however, does not extend to the requirement for applicable large employers (those with 50+ full-time employees) to furnish Forms 1095-C to full-time employees.

Employers may, if they wish, give 1095 forms to employees in January along with the W-2 earnings statements. The due dates for filing the 2019 Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, or 1095-C with the IRS are not extended.

Many fully-insured companies with fewer than 50 employees have their insurance carrier handle this reporting. Self-insured small employers often use a third-party administrator to do the reporting. Employers, however, are still responsible for ensuring that reporting obligations are met. In light of this, employers should be familiar with the applicable information as 2019 ends, and double check source data for accuracy. This could include hire dates, termination dates, and coverage offers.

While IRS representatives might not wear red suits or ride a sleigh, sometimes they give very useful presents without ribbons and bows.

This article was written by Darlene M. Clabault, SHRM-CP, PHR, CLMS, of J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc.

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