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The Department of Health and Human Services and other executive departments and agencies have been given the authority and discretion to roll back certain aspects of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) after President Trump signed an executive order.

As Congress had tasked the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) with the enforcement of several key components of ACA - including the individual mandate, it was unclear as to what that actually meant.  

However, it appears that the IRS - despite warnings to employers that it would not be giving extensions or penalty relief - will not be enforcing the mandate and the IRS has said that they will be extending the deadline for distributing Forms 1095-B and 1095-C to individuals by 30 days to March 2, 2018.  The date for filing Forms 1094-B and 1094-C (and Forms 1095) with IRS has not been extended and remains at February 28, 2018 for paper forms and April 2, 2018 for electronic filing.

In addition to extending the deadline, the IRS will once again offer penalty relief if a company can show that it has made good-faith efforts at complying with the demands of ACA reporting, such as gathering necessary data and transmitting it to a third-party to prepare required reports; testing the ability to transmit data to the IRS and taking steps to ensure compliance for the 2018 tax year.

At the end of 2017, the IRS announced it would begin assessing employer mandates penalties on companies for their 2015 reporting but now the IRS has revealed the specific letter it will issue, when the letter will be issued; the time frame for which the letters apply and an official sample of the letter it will be using.

If it is determined that an applicable large employer company did not fulfill the ACA’s offer of coverage rules or had one or more of its full-time employees receive a premium tax credit for at least one month in 2015 - the IRS will issue a letter. 

A response to the letter will be required by the date shown on the letter - which is usually 30 days from the date of issue.