And You Think Your Tax Return is Complicated Now
Only one more year of simplicity awaits – get ready for 2014 when the Obama “individual mandate” kicks in, and every taxpayer will have to complete a new, additional tax form, requiring disclosure of personal identifying health info, so that the health care cops can determine whether you have complied with the “individual mandate” or not.
According to Steven T. Miller, IRS Deputy Commish for Services and Enforcement in testimony before the House Committee on Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight (whew!), the Affordable Care Act individual minimum coverage provision is expected to affect only a “small percentage” of the total population when it comes into effect in 2014 – we shall see.
In any case, Miller goes on to point out that taxpayers will get a form (copy to the Revenooers) at the end of every year from their insurer to use when they prepare their tax returns. This form will reveal to the IRS whether health insurance coverage was in place during the year. Americans for Tax Reform speculate that this new form will, at a minimum, contain the name and health insurance identification number of the taxpayer, the name and tax identification number of the health insurance company, the number of months the taxpayer was covered by this insurance plan, and whether or not the plan was purchased in one of Obamacare’s “exchanges.”
Miller says that, in most cases, taxpayers will file their tax returns reporting their health insurance coverage, and/or making a payment, and there will be “no need for further interactions with the IRS.”
The IRS process for verifying coverage will be very similar to the one that the IRS has used for years to verify wages and withholding. The follow-up will generally be performed by written correspondence, and will allow taxpayers time to gather the information needed to respond, or get help in understanding the details of the provision.
And now the good news: quoth Miller, “The law also clearly specifies that the IRS will not use levies or file notices of federal tax lien if taxpayers have unpaid amounts related to the individual coverage provision. Moreover, taxpayers will not be criminally prosecuted for non-payment of this amount.”
Thank goodness for small blessings!
CONSULT YOUR TAX ADVISOR – This article contains general information about various tax matters. You should consult your CPA regarding the implications to your own particular situation.
Jeff Quinn, the author of this article, is a shareholder in Ashley Quinn, CPAs and Consultants, Ltd., with offices in Incline Village and Reno. He can be reached at 831-7288, welcomes comments at firstname.lastname@example.org, and invites readers to consider his other commentary at http://blog.nolo.com/taxes.