ACA_logoFor the past four years, we’ve been spending a significant amount of time staying informed about the mandates that go along with the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This time has included some very dry reading, time in seminars, time in webinars, speaking engagements of my own, and most recently, a research project and presentation on the upcoming reporting requirements.

The fact is, while 2016 seems like a long way off, the data required and reported on is being created right now. Very cumbersome Section 6055 and 6056 reporting will be due early in 2016. In fact, employee notices regarding coverage and covered dependents will be due to all employees by the end of January 2016, and 1094-C and 1095-C reports will be due to the government by the last day in February, 2016, and every year thereafter.

This is the most administratively burdensome portion of the Affordable Care Act, and will cause almost every business with over 50 Full-Time Equivalent Employees to rethink systemization, timekeeping, and employee management. Employers who decide to “pay” instead of “play” will have a much simpler time reporting than those who decide to continue, or begin, to offer healthcare to their staff.

As you probably know, fines for non-compliance for employers with over 100 Full-Time Equivalents begin accruing in 2015, and fines for all employers with over 50 Full-Time Equivalent Employees will be assessed in 2016. Fines for failure to timely and accurately report under Section 6055 and 6056 for all employers with over 50 Full-Time Equivalent Employees start immediately. You are required to supply notices to employees and reports to the IRS in early 2016 or face fines.

The good news on the new reporting requirements is that a “good faith” effort this year will be considered enough to avoid penalties in the immediate future. The bad news is that such relief will not continue to be available, the reporting is cumbersome, and the data required may not be easily accessible. But luckily, this year is every business’s free shot to get it right!

If you have any questions or concerns, or would simply like to chat through how to best navigate this quagmire, please don’t hesitate to contact us at 317.587.1019.

For more information on navigating the murky waters of ACA, download our latest presentation.