The IRS recently issued draft versions of Forms 1094-B, 1094-C, 1095-B and 1095-C information returns for the 2017 tax year. The Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) requires coverage providers to use Forms 1094-B and 1095-B to report health plan enrollment and requires applicable large employers (“ALEs”) to use Forms 1094-C and 1095-C to report about employer shared responsibility. The Forms also provide relevant information about individual shared responsibility and premium tax credits.
The 2017 draft Forms 1094 and 1095 are similar to the 2016 Forms. Draft Forms 1094-B, 1095-B and 1095-C are unchanged from the 2016 versions, and the only change to draft Form 1094-C is that the line 22 box for Section 4980H Transition Relief has been removed, since this relief is no longer available. The instructions for recipients of Forms 1095-B and 1095-C have been amended, though, to include a new paragraph entitled, “Additional Information” that refers recipients to an IRS webpage with information about individual shared responsibility, premium tax credits and employer shared responsibility. That paragraph also includes contact information for an IRS Healthcare Hotline for questions.
Despite the President’s Executive Order from February 2017 directing agency heads with responsibility under the ACA to minimize the law’s “unwarranted economic and regulatory burdens,” and despite ongoing Congressional efforts to repeal, replace or otherwise modify the ACA, no changes have been made to ACA reporting requirements. In fact, to further drive home this point, the IRS’s Office of Chief Counsel recently released four information letters, Letter 2017-0010, Letter 2017-0011, Letter 2017-0013, and Letter 2017-0017, confirming that employer shared responsibility and the individual mandate under the ACA still apply to ALEs and individuals, respectively.
Consequently, unless and until solid legislative action is taken, coverage providers, ALEs and individuals should continue complying with all provisions of the ACA, including the filing requirements. Final versions of Forms 1094 and 1095 for the 2017 tax year are expected in the next few weeks.