ACA Calculations – Message from the NTTC

This message was distributed to all EROs from the NTTC on 13 March 2017.

Subject : Special Message: ACA Calculations not working properly

The TaxSlayer Affordable Care Act (ACA) calculations are not working properly. While initially thought to be a problem for a 24-hour period starting Thursday, March 9, at 7:00 AM, there are reports that there may still be errors in tax returns with marketplace insurance or less than full-year health insurance coverage. Please hold all returns that should include Forms 8962 or 8965 until we have confirmed the problems are resolved.

The IRS and TaxSlayer have been asked to identify the transmitted returns impacted by the ACA calculation problem – which returns at which sites. We do not yet know if this information can be generated. Nonetheless, affected taxpayers will need to be contacted.

If the IRS and TaxSlayer cannot identify the returns that are suspect, the choices are to wait for the IRS to send compliance notices to the taxpayers later this year or for the sites that transmitted returns after Wednesday to take on the task of identifying the problem returns and amending those found as necessary.

To identify the suspect returns, one by one, open the Quality Review 2016 print package from the Client Search page and review the return. If the taxpayer (and spouse if applicable) was 65 or older all year and had no dependents, it’s likely correct. If any of the following are found, the return may need to be amended:

  • Form 8962 or 8965 listed as being in the return
  • Full-coverage box on line 61 is not checked
  • An amount on line 61
  • An amount on either line 46 or 69

If an amendment appears to be necessary, arrange with the taxpayer to return to the site so the source data can be checked and an amended return prepared if necessary. This doesn’t need to happen immediately, but ideally would be completed after confirmation that calculations are correct and before refunds are received and spent.

TaxSlayer has also been asked to post similar time-critical notifications on the Message Center. Since Tax-Aide and the IRS don’t have the communication systems to broadcast a real-time message, the Message Center is the best method to quickly get information to the volunteers working that day. Volunteers need to be reminded to check the Message Center if the icon is blinking.

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