The TurboTax Guide to Marketplace Open Enrollment

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The article below is up to date based on the latest tax laws. It is accurate for your 2018 taxes, which you will file by the April 2019 deadline. Learn more about tax reform here.

Marketplace Open Enrollment for 2018 health insurance is now open, and whether you sign up for health insurance on or through your state Marketplace, TurboTax is here to help guide you through the process. If you’ve had a change in life circumstance, are self-employed and need access to health insurance, or are just shopping for another health care plan, read on for information and tools that can help you enroll in a 2019 health insurance plan that makes sense for you, your family and your budget.

Open Enrollment Dates

For 2019 Marketplace insurance coverage, Open Enrollment begins November 1, 2018, and ends December 15, 2018. If you want your coverage to take effect on January 1, 2018, make sure to select your plan by December 15, 2018.

Individual Mandate Tax Penalty for Not Having Insurance is Eliminated

Under tax reform, the tax penalty for not having 2019 health insurance was eliminated beginning with your 2019 taxes(the ones you file in 2020).

Helpful Tools for Open Enrollment

Selecting an insurance plan is an important financial decision. There are many free tools and calculators to arm you with the information you need to choose the level of health care coverage that makes the most financial sense for you and your family.

The IRS has a free online tool that lets you know if you may qualify for a subsidy, or premium tax credit (assistance from the government) for 2018, and estimates how much you may receive to help pay your monthly health insurance premiums. Make sure to calculate your expected household income for the next year carefully, which is needed to figure how much assistance you may be eligible for to help pay for health insurance.

Some taxpayers end up paying some money back on their tax returns if they underestimated their projected income. The more closely you calculate your household income, the easier it is to avoid any surprises come tax season. And if you received an advanced premium tax credit to help you pay for 2018 health insurance, TurboTax will figure out if you are eligible for a bigger premium tax credit or have to pay some back when you file your taxes, based on your entries. No need to worry.

Reporting Coverage on Taxes

The upcoming tax season will be the fifth year taxpayers must report their health insurance status on tax returns, but there’s no reason to worry – this tax year will be just as simple as last year. Most people (8 out of 10) will simply check a box in TurboTax to indicate they were covered.

If you purchased a health insurance plan on ( for Spanish speakers) or your state Marketplace, you will receive Form 1095-A, which confirms coverage, premiums and any subsidies you received to help pay for health insurance. In TurboTax, entering 1095-A information is as easy as entering a W-2: just copy the information from your 1095-A into TurboTax, and we do the rest based on your entries.

People who were insured through their employer, a government program such as Medicaid, or other private insurance, will most likely receive a form (1095-B or -C) confirming coverage or offer of coverage. If you receive these forms, simply review the forms for accuracy and keep the 1095-B or -C for your records – that’s it. You don’t need to wait for these forms to file your 2017 taxes.

Don’t worry about knowing these rules. TurboTax will ask you simple questions and guide you through reporting your health care status and give you the tax deductions and credits you’re eligible for based on your entries.

If you have tax questions, you can connect live via one-way video to a TurboTax Live CPA or Enrolled Agent to get your tax questions answered. A TurboTax Live CPA or Enrolled Agent can review, sign, and file your return to help get your maximum tax refund!

Lisa Greene-Lewis

Lisa has over 20 years of experience in tax preparation. Her success is attributed to being able to interpret tax laws and help clients better understand them. She has held positions as a public auditor, controller, and operations manager. Lisa has appeared on the Steve Harvey Show, the Ellen Show, and major news broadcast to break down tax laws and help taxpayers understand what tax laws mean to them. For Lisa, getting timely and accurate information out to taxpayers to help them keep more of their money is paramount. More from Lisa Greene-Lewis

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