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Early Filers Using Erroneous Form 1095-A Need Not Amend

The Treasury Department announced on February 24 that taxpayers who already filed their 2014 income tax returns using information from an erroneous Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement, will not be required to file amended returns and do not owe additional taxes.

Approximately 800,000 consumers who purchased health care coverage through the Federal marketplace were contacted beginning late last week because the Form 1095-A sent to them by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) contained mistakes. As a result of these mistakes, some taxpayers may have received greater Premium Tax Credits than they were entitled to. According to the Treasury Department, these taxpayers do not have to file amended returns or pay additional taxes for 2014.

Some taxpayers may have received smaller Premium Tax Credits than they were entitled to for 2014. These taxpayers may file amended returns after they receive a corrected Form 1095-A, which the CMS expects to send them in early March. According to the Treasury Department, taxpayers are likely to benefit from amending their 2014 return if the 2015 monthly premium for the second-lowest cost silver plan in their area is less than the 2014 premium they paid.

The CMS urges taxpayers who have been notified that they received an erroneous Form 1095-A but have not yet filed their 2014 tax returns to wait until they receive a corrected Form 1095-A.

Phishing and Online Scams

Phishing is a scam typically carried out through unsolicited email or websites that pose as legitimate sites and lure unsuspecting victims to provide personal and financial information. We received one recently that appeared to come from the IRS. It provided a Verify Identity Now link and the following message: “Your current tax information on record could not be verified. You are hereby required to immediately verify your identity to avoid any delay when processing your tax returns.” We didn’t respond to it, and you shouldn’t either.

The IRS doesn't initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text messages, or social media channels to request personal or financial information. This includes requests for PIN numbers, passwords, or similar access information for credit cards, banks, or other financial accounts.

The IRS provides guidance on what to do if you receive a suspicious IRS-related communication. It also asks that you report all unsolicited emails that appear to come from the IRS. For more information, click here.


PENALTY RELIEF RELATED TO ADVANCE PAYMENTS OF THE PREMIUM TAX CREDIT FOR 2014

In February the IRS issued Notice 2015-9


Purpose This Notice provides limited relief for taxpayers who have a balance due on their 2014 income tax return as a result of reconciling advance payments of the premium tax credit against the premium tax credit allowed on the tax return. Specifically, this Notice provides relief from the penalty under § 6651(a)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code for late payment of a balance due and the penalty under § 6654(a) for underpayment of estimated tax. To qualify for the relief, taxpayers must meet certain requirements described below. This relief applies only for the 2014 taxable year.

This relief does not apply to any underpayment of the individual shared responsibility payment resulting from the application of § 5000A because such underpayments are not subject to either the § 6651(a)(2) penalty or the § 6654(a) penalty. 

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If you think this relief applies to you, contact us. We can help you get the penalty relief applied to your tax return.