Dec. 7, 2016

Coming Soon: Minimum Essential Coverage/6055 Reporting for the 2016 Tax Year

In order to meet Affordable Care Act requirements around minimum essential coverage reporting, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) will once again be issuing 1095-B forms early next year to fully insured and HMO Cost Plus groups, and off-Exchange retail members, as well as reporting to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

As we approach the end of this year, there have been questions about the distribution and timing of these forms. Please refer to the following FAQs to help address questions now, and we will provide additional updates as needed.

Q. When will BCBSTX send the 1095-B tax forms (for the 2016 tax year) to members of insured groups and individual/retail members?
A: BCBSTX plans to distribute 1095 forms to members at the address we have on file no later than Jan. 31, 2017.

Q: Does the recent deadline change by the IRS impact our timing of sending these forms?
A: No. While the IRS did move the deadline for sending these forms back to March 2, 2017, we understand that members need timely access to their 1095 forms for tax purposes. As a result, we are still planning to send out all forms no later than Jan. 31.

Q: Does BCBSTX send forms to members of self-insured groups?
A: No. BCBSTX does not offer 6055 reporting support to self-insured groups.

Q. Will groups be sent a list of all their members who are receiving 1095-B forms? Can groups see a copy of the form?
A: When we transmit the data to the IRS via the 1094-B electronic transmittal form, the information is sent in aggregate. This means that all data for all groups and retail members is sent via the same transmittal form, so it is not possible for us to provide group-specific data to clients.

Privacy laws prohibit us from sending actual 1095 forms to anyone, but the member. However, once we do send the forms, if groups receive questions from individual members who need duplicate copies or who did not receive their forms due to address changes, we will provide reprints to members upon request, just as we did this year.

Q: Will groups be notified when those forms go out?
A: Mailing of the forms is scheduled to begin Jan. 23, with all forms to be sent out no later than Jan. 31.

This communication is intended for informational purposes only. It is not intended to provide, does not constitute, and cannot be relied upon as legal, tax or compliance advice. The information contained in this communication is subject to change based on future regulation and guidance.