Daily Tax Update - July 3, 2013: Administration Delays Healthcare Act Employer Insurance Mandate


Administration Delays Healthcare Act Employer Insurance Mandate:  In a statement last night, Treasury Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy Mark Mazur announced that the Administration was delaying implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) employer insurance mandate until 2015.  Formal guidance on the delay will be published within the next week.

Mazur’s statement said, “The Administration is announcing that it will provide an additional year before the ACA mandatory employer and insurer reporting requirements begin. . .  . We expect to publish proposed rules implementing these provisions this summer, after a dialogue with stakeholders - including those responsible employers that already provide their full-time work force with coverage far exceeding the minimum employer shared responsibility requirements - in an effort to minimize the reporting, consistent with effective implementation of the law.”  Mazur’s statement continued, “Once these rules have been issued, the Administration will work with employers, insurers, and other reporting entities to strongly encourage them to voluntarily implement this information reporting in 2014, in preparation for the full application of the provisions in 2015.  Real-world testing of reporting systems in 2014 will contribute to a smoother transition to full implementation in 2015.  We recognize that this transition relief will make it impractical to determine which employers owe shared responsibility payments (under section 4980H) for 2014.  Accordingly, we are extending this transition relief to the employer shared responsibility payments.  These payments will not apply for 2014.  Any employer shared responsibility payments will not apply until 2015.” 

A spokesperson for the House Ways and Means Committee said, “The Obama Administration's decision to give corporate America a free pass on the employer mandate while continuing to force average, everyday Americans to abide by the law is deeply disturbing.  Instead, the Administration should spend its time focusing on what impacts individuals and families struggling to afford government-mandated insurance.  The Administration's decision is an admission that this law is a failure and that we still need to lower the cost of healthcare for all Americans — which this job-killing law fails to do."

IRS Offices to be Close July 5 Due to Budget Sequester:   All IRS offices will be closed on Friday, July 5, including all toll-free hotlines, the Taxpayer Advocate Service, and the agency’s nearly 400 taxpayer assistance centers nationwide. 

Miscellaneous Guidance Released:
Notice 2013-48 establishes a de minimis exception to the wash sale rules of § 1091 for certain redemptions of shares of money market funds that, under regulations proposed by the Securities and Exchange Commission, would no longer maintain a constant share price.  Under the proposed revenue procedure, if a taxpayer realizes a loss upon a redemption of shares in such a fund, and the amount of the loss is not more than .5 percent of the taxpayer’s basis in the shares, the IRS will treat such loss as not subject to § 1091.