Extension for Employers May Mean Trouble

The following is an article published by WNPR on January 4, 2016. To view the original article, please click here.

Extension for Employers May Mean Trouble at Tax Time for Their Workers

by Harriet Jones

npr-logoBusinesses are heaving a sigh of relief after the IRS relaxed new paperwork rules around the Affordable Care Act. But one expert is warning that the change may make life more difficult for employees.

January was slated to be even crazier than usual for business which have to comply with the Affordable Care Act. This is the year that the IRS is going to require a new form, the 1095-C, to be distributed to all employees. It shows they were offered benefits that complied with the ACA by their employer.

Tax RefundThose were due to go out by the end of January, but at the last minute, the IRS has relented and given a two-month extension.

“I think they are bowing to pressure and concern that businesses were just not prepared,” said David Lewis. His Norwalk-based company, Operations Inc, offers human resources services to small businesses.

Lewis said this is a huge break for companies, some of which may not even have been aware of the new reporting requirements.

“January is such a busy time for those people who otherwise would be responsible for producing and distributing these, that there must have been some noise going back to the IRS that suggested it was going be extremely burdensome,” said Lewis.

So far so good; businesses have a little extra time to get caught up on their paperwork. But what about their employees at tax time? If employers choose to use the extension, it creates another problem. “They may in fact be impacting the ability of some of their employees and past employees to collect a timely refund,” said Lewis, “and the reason is because the new tax forms are going to require you to complete information that for the most part is going to come from your 1095-C form.”

The gradual implementation of the ACA rolls on. This month is when companies with 50 to 100 employees become responsible to provide coverage to all their full-time workers.