ACA IRS Deadlines 2021

Tue October 13, 2020

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On October 2, 2020, the IRS released guidance concerning employers’ obligations under the Affordable Care Act. Notice 2020-76, addresses a broad array of topics under the ACA compliance umbrella.

Two issues of critical concern to Applicable Large Employers (ALEs), which are generally those employers with 50 or more full-time employees, including full-time equivalent employees, in the previous year.

Insurers, self-insuring employers, applicable large employers (ALEs), and other entities obligated to provide minimum essential coverage under the ACA must furnish information returns (Forms 1095-B and/or 1095-C) by January 31 of the year following the applicable ACA reporting year. For ACA reporting year 2020, the deadline to furnish information returns to employees and beneficiaries has now been pushed back to March 2, 2021.

It’s vital to note that Notice 2020-76 does NOT extend the deadline to file Forms 1094-B, 1094-C, or 1095-C with the IRS. Your organization could still incur significant penalties under the ACA for failing to file by February 28, 2021 (March 31, 2021 if filing electronically) with the IRS.

Final Extension of Good-Faith Relief for Filing and Reporting under Sections 6055 and 6056.
The Notice 2020-76 clarifies that 2020 will be the
final year employers can utilize “Good Faith Relief”. As a reminder, good faith relief applies to reporting entities that report incorrect or incomplete information on the return or statement when these entities can show they made good-faith efforts to comply with the information reporting requirements under sections 6055 and 6056 for 2020 (both for furnishing to individuals and for filing with the IRS). This relief applies to missing and inaccurate tax payer information numbers and dates of birth, as well as other information required on the return or statement.

In determining good faith relief, the IRS will take into account whether an employer or other coverage provider made reasonable efforts to prepare for reporting the required information to the IRS and furnishing it to employees and covered individuals, such as gathering and transmitting the necessary data to an agent to prepare the data for submission to the IRS or testing its ability to transmit information to the IRS.

Reporting entities that fail to file an information return or furnish a statement by the extended due dates, are not eligible for this relief. As good-faith relief was intended to be transitional relief, this is the last year the Treasury Department and the IRS intend to provide this relief.