Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Health Care Law's Effect on Your Tax Return

The Affordable Care Act contains tax provisions that affect the 2014 income tax return you file this year. Almost everyone is affected by the individual shared responsibility provision while only people who purchased coverage through the Marketplace are affected by the premium tax credit. The following chart will help you better understand what you need to do on your tax return. This chart is also available on

To help navigate these changes, taxpayers and their tax professionals should consider filing returns electronically. Using tax preparation software is the best and simplest way to file a complete and accurate tax return as it guides individuals and tax preparers through the process and does all the math. There are a variety of electronic filing options, including free volunteer assistance, IRS Free File for taxpayers who qualify, commercial software, and professional assistance.

And everyone in your tax household had health coverage for the entire year
Will simply check the box on line 61 of Form 1040, line 38 of Form 1040-A, or line 11 of Form 1040-EZ
Enrolled in health insurance through the Marketplace
Should receive a Form 1095-A Health Insurance Marketplace Statement from the Marketplace
Received a Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement, showing you received the benefit of advance payments of the premium tax  credit in 2014
Must file a tax return in 2015 and reconcile the advance payments with the amount of the premium tax credit allowed on your return.
Need to reconcile the advance payments of the credit with the credit allowed
Make the calculations using IRS Form 8962 Premium Tax Credit (PTC)
Must repay any excess advance payments of the premium tax credit
Must report the information on line 46 Form 1040 or line 29 of Form1040-A, and cannot file Form 1040-EZ
Are claiming the premium tax credit and did not benefit from advance payments of the premium tax credit
Must file a tax return and IRS Form 8962, Premium Tax Credit (PTC)
Did not receive a Form 1095-A, Healthcare Insurance Marketplace Statement,from the Marketplace
Should contact the state or federal Marketplace through which you enrolled
Are claiming an exemption from the requirement to have health coverage for anyone on your tax return
Will complete Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions,and submit it with your tax return
Still need to obtain a religious conscience exemption or a hardship exemption that can only be granted by the Marketplace
Should file an application with the Marketplace and follow the instructions below about how to report exemptions from the Marketplace on your tax return
Obtained an exemption from the Marketplace, and received your unique Exemption Certificate Number
Will enter the Exemption Certificate Number in Part I of Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions, and submit the form with your return
Applied for an exemption from the Marketplace, but do not currently have an Exemption Certificate Number
Will enter ‘PENDING’ in  Part I of Form 8965 Health Coverage Exemptions, and submit the form with your return
Are claiming an exemption that can be granted only from the IRS
Will not need an Exemption Certificate Number, but will complete Parts II and III of Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions, and submit the form with your return
Are able to obtain the exemption from either the IRS or the Marketplace
Should obtain the exemption from the RS by completing Part II and III of Form 8965,Health Coverage Exemptions, and attach this form to your federal tax return when you file
Are making a shared responsibility payment because you did not have health coverage or qualify for an exemption for any month in 2014
Will enter the payment amount on line 61 of Form 1040, line 38 of Form 1040-A, or line 11 of Form 1040-EZ

More Information

To find out more about the tax provisions of the health care law, visit

Friday, January 23, 2015

Use the Tax Form That’s Right for You

This tax filing season, get things off to a good start. Make it easy on yourself and let the software you use to e-file select the right form for you. Filing electronically is the easiest way to file a complete and accurate return. The software asks questions that guide you, minimizes errors and helps you get the tax credits and deductions that you are entitled to claim. Brand-name software’s also free when you use IRS Free File on

If you do file a paper return, here are some tips to help you use the right forms.

You can generally use the 1040EZ if:
  • Your taxable income is below $100,000;
  • Your filing status is single or married filing jointly;
  • You don’t claim dependents; and
  • Your interest income is $1,500 or less.
Note: You can’t use Form 1040EZ to claim the new Premium Tax Credit. You also can’t use this form if you received advance payments of this credit in 2014.

The 1040A may be best for you if:
  • Your taxable income is below $100,000;
  • You have capital gain distributions;
  • You claim certain tax credits; and
  • You claim adjustments to income for IRA contributions and student loan interest.
You must use the 1040 if:
  • Your taxable income is $100,000 or more;
  • You claim itemized deductions;
  • You report self-employment income; or
  • You report income from sale of a property.
Remember, if you e-file your tax return you don't need any paper forms to mail to the IRS. Go to and click on the ‘IRS e-file’ icon to review your options. If you still need a paper form you can visit to view, download or print what you need right away.

If you found this Tax Tip helpful, please share it through your social media platforms. A great way to get tax information is to use IRS Social Media. You can also subscribe to IRS Tax Tips or any of our e-news subscriptions.

Phishing Remains on the IRS “Dirty Dozen” List of Tax Scams for the 2015 Filing Season

WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today warned taxpayers to watch out for fake emails or websites looking to steal personal information. These “phishing” schemes continue to be on the annual IRS list of “Dirty Dozen” tax scams for the 2015 filing season.

"The IRS won’t send you an email about a bill or refund out of the blue. Don’t click on one claiming to be from the IRS that takes you by surprise,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “I urge taxpayers to be wary of clicking on strange emails and websites. They may be scams to steal your personal information.”

Compiled annually, the “Dirty Dozen” lists a variety of common scams that taxpayers may encounter anytime but many of these schemes peak during filing season as people prepare their returns or find people to help with their taxes.

Illegal scams can lead to significant penalties and interest and possible criminal prosecution. IRS Criminal Investigation works closely with the Department of Justice (DOJ) to shutdown scams and prosecute the criminals behind them.

Stop and Think before Clicking

Phishing is a scam typically carried out with the help of unsolicited email or a fake website that poses as a legitimate site to lure in potential victims and prompt them to provide valuable personal and financial information. Armed with this information, a criminal can commit identity theft or financial theft.

If you receive an unsolicited email that appears to be from either the IRS or an organization closely linked to the IRS, such as the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS), report it by sending it to

It is important to keep in mind the IRS generally does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to request personal or financial information. This includes any type of electronic communication, such as text messages and social media channels. The IRS has information online that can help you protect yourself from email scams.