IRS AIR, also known as Affordable Care Act Information Returns, refers to the federal forms that insurance companies, self-insured companies, and large businesses must file in order to comply with the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The AIR also denotes how these forms need to be transmitted to the IRS.
Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, and 1095-C request health coverage and employer-provided health insurance information from employers and insurance companies. The specific forms you’re required to complete will depend on the type of business you operate.
Several types of organizations and individuals can use the IRS AIR System to electronically file ACA information returns. Software developers, employers, insurers or carriers, government agencies, and third parties are eligible to use the IRS AIR System.
The IRS highly encourages all qualifying parties to submit ACA forms electronically for accuracy and efficiency. It eliminates manual transcription and speeds up processing. E-filing also ensures an immediate receipt and online submission tracking, which offers peace of mind for the filing party.
There are a few steps to filing an IRS AIR. Whether you’re an employer, insurance carrier, or third party, you’ll follow the same process when e-filing. IRS AIR filing requires registration, e-file application, and form submission. For electronic submissions, the filing party must first register online and create an account. Next, submission requires information about your business or organization to determine whether or not you qualify as an ACA Provider. For information on ACA Provider criteria refer to the IRS.
Submitting your IRS AIR is as easy as uploading the Form 8963. As we mentioned earlier, once you complete this step you’ll receive a digital receipt and tracking information. To ensure accurate reporting on Form 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, and 1095-C, HR software can help. Keeping track of all employee ACA filing data can be a challenge. It’s often easiest to integrate a software solution into the mix for accuracy. Depending on the filing year, information requirements can change, which is why it’s critical to maintain records year after year.
The IRS AIR deadline for 2019 is April 15th. E-filing follows the standard deadline for all tax returns. If you need an extension, you must file Form 4868. This form must be completed before the April 15th timeframe.
If you file for an extension, you’ll have until October 15th to file an IRS AIR. Keep in mind that an extension does not mean more time to pay. It’s simply an extended period to prepare ACA Information Returns. If you’re having difficulties filing, the IRS can help.
Late filing can result in several fees to the entity who is filing. A penalty can be assessed for each type of form that is late or completed incorrectly. Fees can range anywhere from $100-$250 depending on the form. Form 1095-C errors tend to result in higher fees. Intentional disregard for reporting requirements can also influence penalties. For more information about reporting penalties, visit the IRS information page online.