Tuesday, January 26, 2016

ACA Recipient Deadline Extended

But that doesn’t mean you should delay your filing!

Yes, it’s true that the IRS has extended the deadlines for the Affordable Care Act (or Obamacare) forms. And recipient forms, which would normally be due in less than a week (on January 31), now need to be in the hands of your employees or insurance recipients by March 31, 2016.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that the people you send a Form 1095-B or 1095-C to need this form to complete their 1099 or W-2 when filing their individual tax returns. So while your filing procrastinators may not care if you wait until the last minute to send out your forms, your recipients who want to go ahead and file won’t be able to until they receive their Form 1095.

So you can wait until the last minute to file, just know you may have some disgruntled employees if they don’t get their form until March 31 when their deadline is April 15.

Of course, the easiest way to get your copies to your recipients is to e-file with ExpressACAForms. Instead of having to print and mail (or hand out) your forms yourself, let us do it for you. Before you check out and transmit, select the Postal Mailing option. Then, in addition to federally e-filing your forms, a dedicated member of our team will send out your recipient forms within 1-2 business days.

Filing your ACA forms doesn’t have to be a long, complicated process. And with ExpressACAForms, you’ll feel like an expert in no time at all -- the same amount of time it’ll take to e-file your forms through our program!

If you have any questions while you’re filing, or need some help transmitting, feel free to get in touch with our friendly customer service team. We’re available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, by phone (704-839-2270) and live chat; and we also offer 24/7 support through email at

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Thursday, January 21, 2016

Q & A: Individual ACA Information Forms

We’ve been talking a lot lately about the importance of Forms 1095-B and 1095-C for employers and insurance providers who need to file them with the IRS. But what about the other journey copies of Form 1095 will take to the health insurance recipients? What information do recipients need to know about the Form 1095 they’ll get in the mail?

To answer that, we’ve put together a little Q & A for individuals expecting to receive a Form 1095-B or Form 1095-C this year:

Will I get any new health care tax forms in 2016 to use on my tax return?
Yes, beginning in 2016, you’ll receive either a Form 1095-A, B, or C, depending on who your insurance comes from (your employer or elsewhere). Similar to 1099s and W-2s, you’ll receive one or more of these forms from the provider(s) of your insurance to summarize the coverage you were offered during the prior year.

When will I receive these health care tax forms?
Typically, you’ll receive these forms around the same time you get your 1099 or W-2: Form 1095 is due to recipients on January 31st as well. However, this year the IRS extended the deadline for 1095-B and 1095-C recipient copies to March 31st, so you may receive those later. Keep in mind though that this won’t affect your return as an individual, and you should file as you normally would.

How will I receive these forms?
Whoever you received your insurance from last year (the Marketplace, a health coverage provider, or your employer) will mail or hand deliver your form(s) to you. If you’ve agreed to accept tax forms from them electronically, you may receive them that way.

Will I get more than one form?
It’s possible. You may get more than one form if:
  • you had coverage from more than one provider,
  • more than one employer you worked for offered coverage,
  • you changed employers or coverage during the year, or
  • other members of your family received coverage from another provider.
Check out question 8 of this IRS FAQ for examples of what to do if you receive more than one form.

Will I get a Form 1095-C from each of my employers?
Again, it’s possible. You’ll receive a Form 1095-C from each employer you worked full-time for if they had 50 or more full-time employees.

Can I file my return if I haven’t received any/all of these forms?
That depends: if you’re receiving Form 1095-B or Form 1095-C, then yes. If you and your family were covered for the entire year, check the full-year coverage box on your return. If not, you can claim an exemption or make a payment with your return.

If you received coverage from the Marketplace, you’ll need information from Form 1095-A to accurately complete and file your tax return. You can get a copy of your Form 1095-A by going to or your state Marketplace website, or calling your Marketplace call center.

No matter which form you receive, you do not need to send it to the IRS as proof of your health coverage with your tax return. A copy is already filed with the IRS by the provider of your forms. It is good, however, to keep the forms as documentation of coverage with your other tax records.

You can find out more about the ACA forms by visiting our website. And filers of Forms 1095-B and 1095-C: if you have any e-filing or ACA-related questions, just send our expert support team an email, live chat, or call! We’re available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, at (704) 839-2270, and 24/7 at

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Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Dare to Care: 68 Healthy Office Lunches

How are those New Year’s Resolutions to get healthier holding up? Are you already seeing progress in 2016, or are you ready to throw in the towel? Well, don’t give up hope just yet because ExpressACAForms has got another edition of Dare to Care to help you through the hardest first months for keeping resolutions.

While eating healthy doesn’t seem hard, in theory, the alternative can definitely seem easier, especially when it comes to lunch. Most of us don’t get to go home and cook lunch each day, and if you’re not already in the habit of making healthy lunches ahead of time, this usually means deciding between leftovers, a microwave meal, or eating out -- not typically your healthiest options. 

So since we’ve recently learned that it takes a lot longer than 21 days for a habit to form (try around 66 days), we’ve compiled a list of over two months worth of easy-to-prepare, delicious meals to help turn your healthy lunches into a lifelong habit:

Sandwiches                      Soups
1. Chicken & Hummus Wraps                         13. Chunky Moroccan
2. Mashed Chickpea Salad Sandwich             14. Roasted Carrot-Coconut
3. French Tuna Salad Sandwich                      15. Spicy Tomato
4. Mediterranean Turkey Wrap                      16. Pasta e Fagioli
5. Thai Chicken Roll-Ups                                  17. Tortilla with Black Beans
6. The World’s Easiest Falafel                          18. Slow Cooker Chili
7. Curried Chicken Salad                                  19. Chicken Noodle
8. Chicken Bánh Mí                                           20. Chickpea, Vegetable, & Pesto
9. Little Italy Chicken Pitas                               21. Easy Minestrone
10. Thai Chicken Lettuce Wrap                       22. Chunky Turkey & White Bean
11. Eggplant Pita Pizza                                      23. Easy Veggie Chili
12. Asian Chicken Lettuce Wrap

Salads                               Pastas
24. Warm Steak, Feta, and Artichoke             42. Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta Salad
25. BLT Lettuce Wrap                                       43. Chili-Spiked Orzo Salad w/ Pinto Beans
26. Avocado, Corn, and Cilantro                     44. Spicy Sesame-Soy Soba Noodles
27. Cannellini Bean and Escarole                   45. Steak Noodle Salad
28. Solie’s Signature Salad                               46. Zucchini & Almond Pasta Salad
29. Persian Shirazi Salad                                  47. Tuscan Bow Ties
30. Mediterranean Garden Wraps                 48. Orzo Salad w/ Tomatoes, Basil, & Feta
31. Greek Tuna Salad                                        49. The Healthiest Lasagna Ever
32. Arugula w/ Roasted Chicken & Quinoa   50. Three-Bean Pasta Salad
33. Mason Jar Salads                                         51. Chicken, Corn, & Tomato Pasta Salad
34. Chickpea, Cherry Tomato, & Feta             52. Roasted Pepper-Corn Pasta Salad
35. Asian Green Bean Salad                             53. Greek Orzo Salad
36. Neiman Marcus Chicken Salad                 54. Chilled Sesame Soba w/ Cashews
37. Wheat Berry Salad                                      55. Pasta w/ Quinoa Meatballs
38. Radish & Pecan Grain Salad                      56. Teriyaki Soba Salad
39. Spinach and Persimmon Salad
40. Kale w/ Lentils & Apricot Vinaigrette
41. Tabbouleh w/ Chicken & Red Pepper

Everything Else
57. Baked Quinoa Casserole                            63. One Pot Kale & Quinoa Pilaf
58. Tomato Basil Quinoa                                  64. Homemade Chipotle Burrito Bowl
59. Louisiana-Style Red Beans & Rice             65. Heart-Healthy Potato Salad
60. Breakfast Fried Rice                                     66. Fuss-Free Frittata
61. Mexican-Style Sweet Potatoes                   67. 20-Minute Kale & Quinoa Bowl
62. Veggie Rice Bowls                                         68. Miso Sweet Potato & Broccoli Bowl

For more healthy recipes and well-being tips, check out our sister product, HealingRadius! And for help with your Affordable Care Act e-filing, stay tuned for our other blogs, or visit We’ve also got friendly, expert customer service if you need any help along the way. Just give us a call (704-839-2270) or send us a live chat Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, or send us an email at any time at

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Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Adventures of Ace: Filing to Recipients

It’s been a while since we last caught up with Ace, our local (and first ever) e-filing superhero, mostly because he’s been “incredibly busy” playing with his new time machine.

Having travelled far and wide with Trucker B, and now to the past and future with a new sidekick, Doc, Ace is confident he can return to the taxpayers of America with all the information they need regarding the Affordable Care Act forms.

Okay, so Ace’s methods may be a little out there, but at least his knowledge is sound. Although, he does say the same thing about Doc…

“I know, I know, of all the things to talk about now, why those?” Ace continues. “Well, as you probably don’t know, there are consequences to non-irradiated minds knowing EVERYTHING, so I’ll have to share this knowledge with you in bits and pieces.”

Ace continues his announcement by saying that all filers of Form 1095-B or Form 1095-C must send a copy of these forms to their health insurance recipients as well as to the IRS. Their employees or insurance clients need these forms to complete their federal tax return.

“In the future,” Ace says with a new fervor, “these Forms 1095-B and 1095-C will be due to your recipients at the same time as their 1099s and W-2s, which is the last day of January. But for the 2015 tax year,

“Oh, and for those of you also filing 1099s and W-2s,” Ace adds, “these forms’ due dates have not changed. The recipient copies are still due by February 1, 2016 -- my powers of perception tell me that January 31 will be a Sunday this year. Check out our friends at ExpressIRSForms to e-file those.”

As Ace flies off, he shouts out his usual reminder to call upon his sidekicks at ExpressACAForms (“Where they’ll even mail your recipient copies for you!”) for any help with e-filing the ACA forms. We’re here and available by phone (704-839-2270) and live chat Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, and offer 24/7 email assistance at

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Tuesday, January 12, 2016

More on the Affordable Care Act

As often as we’ve talked about the IRS ACA Forms 1095-B and 1095-C, we haven’t gone too in depth on the actual Affordable Care Act itself. So while we can’t go super in depth on the legislature in just one post (there’s a lot - the condensed version is 1000 pages long), we can give you a quick overview of how the Act has affected America’s healthcare laws.

In a sentence, the ACA was written to attempt to reform the healthcare system by providing more Americans with affordable, quality health insurance and by curbing the growth in healthcare spending. Keep in mind, though, that healthcare reform doesn’t begin and end with the Act itself. In most cases, the law gives power to ongoing efforts by Health and Human Services and other government programs to reform health care.

Under the Affordable Care Act:
  • All Americans with health insurance are privy to new benefits, rights, and protections which ensure that they get treatment when they need it.
  • Insurance is more affordable. By reducing premium and out-of-pocket costs for millions of families and small business owners, over 32 million Americans who couldn’t afford health care before now can.
  • Risk is spread equally to end insurance discrimination. This means you can no longer be charged more based on gender, health status, or age.
  • A new competitive health insurance marketplace was set up, giving Americans access to group buying power. This also allows Americans to compare plans and receive cost assistance.
  • The budget and economy are put on a more stable path. By cutting government overspending and reining in waste, fraud, and abuse in the healthcare industry, it’s predicted the deficit will be reduced by more than $100 billion over the next ten years, and more than $1 trillion over the second decade.

Nothing in the ACA forces any American to have healthcare or to drop their current healthcare plan, assuming that plan complies with the ACA.

For a more information on the Act, check out this post from Obamacare Facts that goes into each Title of the ACA in more detail. Or, you can read the Act itself, but it’s not exactly light reading.

And for more information on e-filing your ACA forms, give us a call! We’re available by phone (704-839-2270) and live chat Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST. We also offer 24/7 email support at

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Thursday, January 7, 2016

ExpressACAForms: The Features

At ExpressACAForms, we’ve worked hard to create the best program for e-filing your Affordable Care Act forms. After all, this is the first time anyone’s filing these forms, and you only get one time to make a first impression, right?

Part of what makes ExpressACAForms such a user-friendly program are all of the great features we’ve included to help you e-file with unprecedented ease. Allow us to take this blog post to tell you a little more about some of those features…

Cloud-Based Filing
At ExpressACAForms, our program is entirely cloud-based, which means there’s no need to download any software or forms. You can access your account and information anywhere you have access to an internet connection, through your desktop, tablet, or phone. But don’t think that means we’re any less safe - we’ve taken every precaution to make sure your information is secure and shared only with the IRS.

Bulk Uploading
Got a lot of recipients? Already have all of your recipients’ information in a spreadsheet? You really don’t wanna enter your information individually? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. When it comes time to enter your recipients into your forms, you’ll have the option to bulk upload all of their information at once. Use your own spreadsheet, or download the template we’ve made available.

Postal Mail
Before you start printing forms and stuffing envelopes one by one, why not use ExpressACAForms’s postal mail feature? For a small postal fee, you can have your recipient forms mailed for you by a member of our attentive support team.

Help Text and Videos
In the program, we’ve included a Help Text section to explain the ins and outs of the ACA forms. This text updates as you make your way through the forms so all the information you need is at your fingertips. We’ve also created a series of videos to help clear up any confusion you may have as you begin filing. You can check them out on our Youtube channel!

Customer Support
When we say we’re here for you, we mean it. At ExpressACAForms, we don’t just want to help you file your forms, we want to help you understand them. If you have any questions or need help along the way, give us a call. Or a live chat. Or an email. Our phone (704-839-2270) and chat support is available live Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST; and email support is available 24/7 at

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Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Dare to Care: A Healthy Start to 2016

Nobody’s perfect: we all have plenty of things we could do to improve our day-to-day lives and overall health. So why not take the new year to start improving? Sure, it’s a little cliché, but if you keep the improvements going past January, haven’t you technically beaten the cliché?

That’s what ExpressACAForms is here to challenge you to do: follow these 5 simple steps for a healthier you in 2016. Make the Affordable Care Act as unnecessary as some people claim it is by being so healthy that you don’t even need that health insurance you’re now required to have!

The CDC has announced that insufficient sleep is a public health problem. Across all ages, it’s been found that Americans aren’t getting enough good sleep to function at our best everyday. When this happens, not only does our work suffer, our health suffers. A Norwegian study found that the risk of a heart attack and other cardiovascular diseases can increase anywhere from 27%-45% if you’re getting too poor or too little sleep.
  • Start Healthy: In 2016, try to get 7-8 hours of sleep each night. Try also getting into the good sleep habits of going to bed at the same time each night and avoiding large meals, caffeine, and alcohol close to bedtime.

Diet Before Exercise
One of the keys to a healthy lifestyle is the balance between a good diet and sufficient exercise. However, taking on an entirely new diet with a new fitness regime can shock the system and send you reeling back to the couch and your Oreos. 
  • Start Healthy: In 2016, focus on improving your diet without over thinking it: add some fruits and veggies here, cut back on dessert and processed foods there. When you start seeing results, start moving more (you’ll have the energy to!) but make sure to keep that healthy eating going too.

Drink More
Water. Drink more water, and drink more tea. Staying hydrated helps keep you full, energized, and focused, and helps boost the immune system. Tea has been regarded for thousands of years as a key to good health, and research today helps support this. Studies have found that some teas may help with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, and mental alertness.
  • Start Healthy: In 2016, focus on making water and tea your default drinks. Instead of reaching for a soda, focus on increasing your water and tea intake. Drinking water and tea can help cut craving, making it easier to stick to your goal to get healthier.

Quit Smoking
If you need a sign, here it is. By this point, we’re sure you’ve heard the dangers of smoking and how quitting can add up to 14 years onto your life. And while this one’s definitely the hardest on our list, the beneficial effects start to set in almost immediately. After:
  • 20 minutes: heart rate drops toward normal levels
  • 2 hours: heart rate and blood pressure decrease to near normal levels
  • 12 hours: carbon monoxide levels decrease and blood oxygen levels increase to normal
  • 48 hours: nerve endings start to regrow, enhancing smell and taste
  • 3 days: the nicotine will be completely out of the body
    • Unfortunately, this means withdrawal symptoms will peak around this time. Check out this post on managing nicotine withdrawal if it gets to be too much.
  • 2-3 weeks: circulation and lung function improve greatly
  • 1-9 months: the lungs will begin to repair themselves and function properly again
  • 1 year: risk for heart disease is lowered by 50% compared to smokers
  • 5 years: risk for stroke lowers to that of non-smokers
  • 10 years: risk of lung cancer decreases to half that of a smoker’s; risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, kidney, and pancreas also significantly decrease
  • 15 years: risk of heart disease is back to the same level as non-smokers
  • Start Healthy: In 2016, commit to smoking fewer cigarettes. Remember: baby steps. Which brings us to...

Start Small
A big reason a lot of resolutions don’t work out is because people try to make too big of a change at one time. As humans, we’re just not programmed for that. We’ve tried to compile a list of easy ways to get healthy in 2016 so you might be able to take them all on. But that doesn’t mean you have to make all of these changes all at once (or even make them at all). So even if the only change you make until June is to commit to getting a full night’s sleep every night, that’s improvement.
  • Start Healthy: Make one small change and then another. You’ll get used to each change until it becomes your new normal. And when you look back and see how far you’ve come through small steps, you’ll be glad you abided by that old cliché about this new you.

For more tips on getting healthy in the new year, check out ExpressACAForms's sister programs, Healing Radius and communEATi! And for help with your ACA forms and information returns, give us a call at 704-839-2270, or visit our site at

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