A 1094 and 1095 filing guide for employers

Many employers will have to file IRS Forms 1094 and 1095 in tax year 2015. The filings track employer and employee compliance with the “shared responsibility” mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The IRS filing requirements apply to employers with 50 or more full-time employees (FTEs). The firms must file Forms 1094 and 1095 to document their corporate health coverage offerings to FTEs. Form 1094 is a transmittal form for the IRS, while 1095 is the return detailing benefit information for each worker. Some have dubbed Form 1095 the “W-2 for benefits.”

Here is a quick breakdown of the most frequently asked questions about these forms:

-- For a fully insured plan, employers with fewer than 50 full-time employees do not have to file Forms 1094 and 1095. However, for firms with more than 50 full-time employees, the IRS requires Forms 1094-C and 1095-C to be completed, with FTEs receiving Form 1095-C.

-- For a self-insured plan, employers with fewer than 50 full-time employees must file Forms 1094-B and 1095-B. Employees will receive Form 1095-B. Employers with more than 50 full-time workers will file Forms 1094-C and 1095-C, with workers getting 1095-C.

-- Employers with less than 250 full-time employees regardless of plan can file electronically or on paper. For employers with 250 full-time employees or more, electronic filing is the lone option.

When to file is also another big question, with most forms due before April 1. Forms 1094 and 1095 must be filed by February 29, 2016 if filing manually or by March 31, 2016 if filing electronically. Forms 1095-B and 1095-C must be sent to employees by February 1, 2016.

What about penalties for employers who do not file as required? Late filings could cost employers as much as $250 per employee for whom a return is required, with greater penalties possible for more serious violations.

The Plexus Groupe is offering preparation, compliance and filing services for IRS Forms 1094-1095. To schedule a consultation, call The Plexus Groupe at 847-307-6100 (Chicago), 972-770-5010 (Dallas) or 405-241-9462 (Oklahoma City) or contact us at plexusgroupe.com.