As we shift into the new year, we're gearing up for an onslaught of new paperwork that is essential for filing your 2014 tax return.
One brand-new piece of paper: Form 1095-A, the Health Insurance Marketplace Statement.
If you obtained coverage under Obamacare last year, you need Form 1095-A to file your tax return for 2014. The form is to be sent by Jan. 31, but you're not going to be able to file your taxes without it.
It may seem early to be talking about taxes, but this tax season could be a mess, thanks in part to some complicated tax rules involving the Affordable Care Act.
Consumers will receive their 1095-A from the Marketplace in the mail, and it will be posted to their online HealthCare.gov account during tax filing season, according to Aaron Albright, director of the media relations group for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
"We will be doing robust outreach to consumers during tax season to explain how taxes and health care intersect, and steps consumers can take to prepare for the coming tax season," Albright said.
Form 1095-A reports the total monthly health insurance premiums paid to the insurance company you selected through the Marketplace. It also details the advance payments of the premium tax credit that were paid directly to your insurance company.
If Form 1095-A is lost, never shows up, or is wrong, taxpayers must contact their Marketplace directly. Taxpayers can get information on how to reach the Marketplace on HealthCare.gov and IRS.gov/aca.
Luis Garcia, spokesman for the IRS, said because a third party provides Form 1095-A, you'd need to go to the health insurance marketplace to get a copy if the form is lost or there are mistakes. The IRS is not going to be able to answer questions about the information on Form 1095-A or about missing or lost forms.
The IRS recently released a 21-page publication on how the Affordable Care Act affects taxes. IRS Publication 5187, Health Care Law: What's New for Individuals & Families.
Information on the tax implications of the Affordable Care Act can be found at healthcare.gov/taxes and irs.gov/aca.
OTHER PAPERWORK: Special life events create a string of important tax papers.
Buy a house? Make sure to keep the HUD-1, the closing statement you received when you bought or sold the house. If you refinanced a mortgage, you'd also have received the HUD-1 statement when you close on the refinance.
If you had a baby, make sure to have the child's Social Security card ready for tax time. It is best to verify the name as spelled on the card and the exact Social Security number on the card.
As early as it seems, it's never too early to get a special folder for all the paperwork you'll need at tax time.
NEW THIS YEAR: The IRS has created a new partner page to explain various professional designations. A database of tax professionals is expected to be offered at the IRS website early this tax season, as well.