2014 Tax returns

 

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2014 tax returns will be the first which will show the effects of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

There have been many remarks made about the Act.  Here is my opinion regarding the Affordable Care Act.

One of the most beneficial parts of the law, was the fact that you could not be excluded for pre-existing conditions.  Many people who are self employed, like myself, wanted to have health insurance but could not get it due to pre-existing conditions.  When you are an employee, once you qualify for medical insurance through your employer, your pre-existing conditions do not preclude you from getting coverage.

A second beneficial part to the law, was the ability to have some of your premium subsidized by the government based upon your income.  This made health insurance much more affordable for many self-employed people.  Let me tell you that buying health insurance in the open market is not a cheap experience.

And although the goal was for everyone to get health insurance, there are some people that qualify for exemption due to their income level.

So how does this effect your 2014 return?

If you had coverage through your employer for all members of your household, you just check a box and you are done with your health care reporting requirements.
If you had coverage such as Medicare or Medicaid or a private insurance company for the entire year, you just check a box and you are done as well.
If you had coverage for the entire year through Healthcare.gov, you should have received a 1095-A which you will use to complete a form that shows that you had coverage all year.  It will also help to determine if the amount of premium assistance that you received was too much or too little and compute your refund amount or balance due.
Now it gets more complicated!  If you had coverage  for less than the entire year of 2014, you could be faced with penalties for not having health insurance.  However, if you had coverage through the Marketplace that starting by May 1st, 2014, then you will have no penalty.  But if you had coverage that was obtained elsewhere you could face a penalty when completing your return.
You had no health insurance.  Now it depends on your income, dependents and other factors whether you have a penalty.  DO NOT TRY TO DO YOUR OWN RETURN.  SEEK THE HELP OF A PROFESSIONAL!  We know the rules and can get you the best results.
If you don’t have health insurance yet, you had better get some, because the cost for not having any only gets worse each year.

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