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Ordinary Employee Benefits Issues That Can Cause Extraordinary Problems in M&A Deals

Employee benefits rarely drive corporate transactions, but if the benefits of a target company are not reviewed carefully, they can sometimes derail the transaction.  Even some of the most routine facets of benefit plan administration can result in significant potential financial exposure (e.g., additional employer contributions, taxes, penalties, and fees as well as fees associated with the preparation and filing of IRS and DOL correction program applications) that could negatively affect the overall value of the target company. By identifying issues early in the transaction, the seller can prevent costly purchase price reductions and identify issues that need correction, while the buyer can avoid overpaying for a target and ensure that representation and warranty insurance will be available to cover potential claims. Some of those routine compliance issues include, but are not limited to, the following: Failing to timely file an annual Form 5500.  The DOL can assess a penalty… Continue Reading

Last Year for Leniency on Forms 1095-C

In keeping with prior years, the IRS has extended the due date for providing the 2020 Forms 1095-B and C to individuals until March 2, 2021. These forms are required for compliance with the Affordable Care Act (?Ç£ACA?Ç¥). In Notice 2020-76, the IRS also extended the good-faith transition relief for penalties related to incomplete or incorrect Forms 1095-B and C to 2020. Notice 2020-76 also states that this is the last year for which the IRS intends to provide this type of good-faith relief. This relief was especially helpful for employers who received ACA employer penalty notices and determined that the penalty notices were related to reporting errors on their Form 1095-C. Employers should thus ensure that all software errors and glitches that resulted in incorrect coding on Forms 1095-C are resolved before the 2021 reporting is due. Notice 2020-76 is available here.

Extension of Due Dates for 2017 Individual Statements under Affordable Care Act Information Reporting

In Notice 2018-06, the IRS extended the due date, from January 31, 2018 to March 2, 2018, for employers (including applicable large employers), insurers, and other providers of ?Ç£minimum essential coverage?Ç¥ in 2017 (?Ç£Reporting Entities?Ç¥) to furnish statements to individuals on IRS Forms 1095-B and 1095-C, pursuant to the Affordable Care Act?ÇÖs information reporting requirements (the ?Ç£ACA Reporting Requirements?Ç¥). The notice also extends the IRS?ÇÖs transition relief from penalties that the Reporting Entities would otherwise incur for incorrect or incomplete information reported on their 2017 information statements to individuals or returns filed with the IRS. To obtain this transition relief, a Reporting Entity must show that it made a good faith effort to comply with the ACA Reporting Requirements in furnishing statements to individuals and filing its IRS returns. Notably, the notice does not extend the due date under the ACA Reporting Requirements for Reporting Entities to file their 2017… Continue Reading

IRS Forms 1094-C/1095-C Draft Instructions Released

The IRS recently released draft instructions for Forms 1094/1095 that correspond with the draft Forms 1094/1095 the IRS released in July (please see our prior blog post on the draft forms?áhere). Highlights of the changes and clarifications in the draft instructions for Forms 1094/1095 include: Certain transition relief available in 2015 remains available for non-calendar year plans for the portion of the 2015 plan year that ends in 2016; Certain coding used in Forms 1094-C/1095-C has been reserved for 2016; and Retirees who separated from employment should be reported the same as COBRA participants who separated from employment. Filing Dates and Extensions: To the IRS. The 2016 Form(s) 1094-C and accompanying Forms 1095-C must be filed electronically with the IRS by March 31, 2017 (February 28, 2017 if paper filing is used). An automatic 30-day extension is available if filed no later than the due date. Another 30-day extension may… Continue Reading

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