IRS Releases Updated Publication 5165 for Electronically Filing PPACA Information Returns

On Dec. 14, 2016, the IRS released an updated version of Publication 5165, entitled “Guide for Electronically Filing Affordable Care Act (ACA) Information Returns for Software Developers and Transmitters,” for tax year 2016 (processing year 2017). This updated publication replaces prior versions and outlines the communication procedures, transmission formats, business rules and validation procedures for returns transmitted electronically through the Affordable Care Act Information Return System (AIR).

As a reminder, if you are a self-insured employer or applicable large employer, the deadline to provide information returns to employees or responsible individuals is March 2, 2017 (changed from Jan. 31, 2017), for tax year 2016. Also, employers filing 250 or more forms must file electronically with the IRS by March 31, 2017. Employers filing fewer than 250 forms may file by paper or electronically, and paper filings are due by Feb. 28, 2017.

Those filing electronically must use AIR, and the only acceptable format will be XML. The individual responsible for electronically filing the employer’s forms will be required to register with the IRS e-Services and receive a PIN which will be used to sign the electronically filed forms.

Employers who plan to electronically file Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C or 1095-C will want to review the guidance and familiarize themselves with the filing process. They may also need to engage their internal technology teams to assist in properly formatting files (or work with an outside vendor to assist).

Publication 5165 »