Each year at this time I like to revisit for employers the deadlines for reporting employee health coverage to the IRS. The fines for late filings are hefty so it’s important that companies ensure they’re on track early in January.
In November, 2018 the IRS issued Notice 2018-94, extending the deadline for employer and insurer reporting from January 31st, to March 4th, 2019.
The following offers employers important information about the deadlines and also answers some of the most frequently asked questions about the reporting requirements.
1095-B: Think of “B” as standing for “Bought health insurance”. This is the form that insurance companies send to individuals so those individuals can prove to the IRS they BOUGHT health insurance in the prior year. In many cases it will be the insurance companies furnishing the B forms to individuals and to the IRS. The only exception occurs with self-funded employers. (See the table below for explanation).
In 2019, the fine for failing to furnish forms to employees by the deadline will increase to $270.00 per return.
Similarly, the fine for failing to file forms with the IRS by the deadline also increases to $270.00 per return.
Failure to adhere to both deadlines will cost an employer $540.00 per return, however it is capped at no more than $3,275,000 per calendar year.
Example, in the case of 100 employees, failure to file returns by the deadline will cost an employer $54,000.00.
In Notice 2016-70 the IRS extends the good-faith relief that applied to filings in 2015 to 2016 and 2017 and now to 2018. This relief applies to missing and inaccurate taxpayer identification numbers and dates of birth, as well as other information required on the return or statement.
In other words, as long as employers make a good attempt to ensure all information is accurate, AND then file the information by the applicable deadline, it is unlikely a penalty will be assessed.
IMPORTANT: To show “good faith” efforts to qualify for this relief, filers must meet the applicable deadlines.
Yes. Filers can still take advantage of an automatic 30-day extension of the IRS filing deadline by submitting Form 8809 before the relevant due date. Click here to download Form 8809.
For questions about the forms or employer responsibilities in general, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 602-903-4047.
Joanna Morrow is an employer consultant and advocate who has worked in the employee benefits industry for over two decades. She works diligently to help employers overcome obstacles in their business by sharing her expertise in Human Resources, Benefits & Compensation, Process Mapping, Risk Management and ERISA/DOL/IRS compliance. She is a licensed life and health insurance professional in the State of Arizona and is an active member of the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU). Joanna is a senior partner at Arizona Benefit Consultants in Phoenix.