2017 Tax Returns Require Filers to Certify Health Insurance

October 18, 2017

On October 13, 2017, the IRS announced that it will require tax filers to certify if they had health coverage for the year on their tax returns.  The IRS will not accept paper or electronic filings if the filer does not report full-year coverage, claim a coverage exemption or report a shared responsibility payment on the tax return.  Individuals with qualifying coverage for the entire year will check the “Full-year coverage” box on their federal income tax return. Those who are claiming a coverage exemption will file Form 8965 with their federal income tax return.  Those who owe a shared responsibility payment will report the payment on Form 1040 in the Other Taxes section and on the corresponding sections on Form 1040A and 1040EZ.

In previous years tax filers did not need to provide this certification despite the Individual Shared Responsibility Provision (aka, Individual Mandate) being in effect.  The Individual Mandate requires individuals to have qualifying health care coverage (minimum essential coverage) for each month, qualify for an exemption or pay a penalty when filing their federal income tax return. Minimum essential coverage includes:

  • Most health coverage provided by your employer;
  • Health insurance purchased through the Marketplace;
  • Coverage under a government-sponsored program; and
  • Individual policies purchased from insurance companies.

Individuals have through Monday, April 16, 2018 to file their federal income taxes.


About Andie Schieler 

Andie is an attorney working in the compliance division of Marsh & McLennan Agency’s St. Louis office, J.W.Terrill, and specializing in interpreting the Affordable Care Act and various insurance laws. She advises clients on legal and regulatory issues affecting their employee benefit plans. She obtained her law degree from Saint Louis University and undergraduate from Indiana University Bloomington.