Around eight million individuals got health coverage in 2014 through an Affordable Care Act exchange. If you're among that group, pay attention to your mail in the coming weeks.
You'll be getting a Form 1095-A in connection with your Obamacare coverage.
Important health care exchange info: Form 1095-A is a new tax reporting document. It is sent only to individuals who obtained health insurance coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace, either the federal or a state exchange.
This new two-page form includes information about your exchange-purchased insurance coverage, any household members covered under the policy, the monthly premium you (and other family members) paid for the coverage, and any tax subsidy, also known as the premium tax credit, you got to help buy the policy.
Form 8962, too: You'll need all this information to fill out another new piece of tax paperwork, Form 8962. You'll have to download Form 8962 yourself or find it in the tax software you use or depend on your tax preparer to fill it out for you.
Form 8962 is the form with which you will (a) reconcile the amount of advance premium tax credit you got with your exchange-purchased policy or (b) claim the healthcare tax credit to which you're entitled if you didn't do so when you got your coverage.
So be on the lookout for the 1095-A. The Internal Revenue Service also gets a copy of your exchange insurance information and if you ignore it when you file, the agency will let you know of the oversight.
If you or your family members enrolled in more than one qualified health plan policy via the marketplace, you will receive a Form 1095-A for each policy. When the form or forms arrive, check the information on each carefully. If you have any questions about the information's accuracy, contact your marketplace directly.
As with other tax reporting documents, the marketplace issuers have until the end of January to send out the forms. Since Jan. 31 is on Saturday, they actually have until Feb. 2 to get the 1095-As in the mail. You also should be able to download it through your HealthCare.gov account.
Other tax docs in the mail, too: Speaking of additional tax reporting documents, all the traditional documents also are on their way.
For most folks, this includes the good old W-2 that salaried workers get from their employers. You must attach it if you file by paper or enter the information on the W-2 into your tax software in order for your return to be processed.
Various 1099 forms also are on the way. These myriad versions report to you and the IRS any earnings you got last year from investments, independent jobs, retirement distributions, and even state tax refund amounts.
The key is to know which tax statements you should get and wait for them before filing your 1040. If you send in your return before you have all the necessary data, you'll just have to file an amended tax return.
So be patient. Messing with all that tax paperwork once a year is bad enough. No one wants to have to do the job a second time.
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