2018 ACA Information Returns Series 1 Volume 7
How-To File Information Returns (Part One)
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Our last post in this series discussed creating the 1094-C form. Now we will discuss how to file your information return. For the benefit of all Datatech customers, both paper and electronic filing will be covered in three posts.
If you are filing less than 250 forms 1095-C, paper filing may sound temptingly simple. While it is relatively easy, so far the response time from the IRS for paper returns has ranged from 9-24 months from the date of receipt. Depending on the issues the IRS has found with your submission, researching employee files that far into the past could prove daunting.
Following the lead of the IRS, Datatech strongly encourages all employers to electronic file due to the instant advantages it affords. If errors are found during the electronic filing process, they are reported back to you immediately by the IRS Acknowledgment file. This allows you to correct and resend the information within a short period of time.
How-To Paper File
If you are filing your information return on paper, you cannot submit more than 250 forms 1095-C. Start by printing IRS copies of all Full-Time 1095-C forms. Remember, on paper these can only be submitted in the Landscape IRS format. Do NOT send the Portrait Mailer format to the IRS.
Next, you may want to print a second set of copies for your records. Then to finish your paper file, properly address and mail the 1094-C form together with all of the 1095-C forms on or before the due date to meet the IRS requirement. The 2018 due date is February 28, 2019 [Add To Calendar].
How-To Prepare to Electronic File
If you are filing 250 or more 1095-C’s, you must file electronically. There are several steps that must be completed before you can use the electronic filing features of the HRM software. If you have already registered for e-Services user accounts and completed the ACA Application for TCC, skip to Part Two of these instructions in Volume 8 of this blog series.
If you have already uploaded Test files and the IRS has already placed your TCC into Production (P) status, skip to Part Three of these instructions in Volume 9 of this blog series. Once your TCC is in Production (P) status, it will remain in that status. You do not need to follow these steps again.
If you have not already performed these steps, they must be completed far in advance of the date you plan to file. We recommend starting the process as soon as possible. It will likely take about 6 weeks for you to register for e-Services accounts, complete the ACA Application for TCC, submit Test files, and place your TCC into Production (P) status. So please start today!
How-To Register for e-Services User Accounts
To begin, at least two Responsible Officials within your company must first register for personal user accounts on the IRS e-Services website. Any other Contacts within your company must also register in order to have access to the TCC and to process ACA electronic files. At least two Contacts are also required, but Responsible Officials may have a duplicate Contacts entry.
Users must register using their personal tax information. This allows the IRS to verify their identity. The IRS then sends the user a letter by mail to the address shown on the taxpayer’s last Tax Return. This letter explains how the user completes the registration process.
e-Services also requires users to register using a two-factor authentication process called Secure Access. This requires a security code be sent to your mobile phone or generated by the IRS2Go app each time you log in. Get IRS answers to FAQ’s about e-Services and Secure Access by clicking HERE.
How-To Complete the ACA Application for TCC
Next, one of the Responsible Officials will start the ACA Application for TCC. This application designates the Firm for which the Official is responsible. The first Responsible Official will also add any other Responsible Officials and Contacts to the Authorized Users section of the application. The first Responsible Official then signs the application.
All other Officials must now log in to their accounts. They will see the TCC Application which will show a status of ‘Signature Required’. They will View/Edit the application and electronically sign it. After the last Responsible Official signs the application, a receipt is provided. The TCC code is also issued, but 48 hours must pass before it can be used.
Our next post in this series will discuss electronic Test files and how to place your TCC into Production (P) status. Datatech is here to help our HRM Software users make the best use of their investment. If you have questions regarding any post in this series, please call or email Datatech Support.
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