Volunteers help tax filers navigate Obamacare changes

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – When you file your taxes this year, there will be some changes due to the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

“If you have insurance and you had if for the entire year, through an employer or you had it yourself, you’re good. It’s only those individuals that bought it from the marketplace,” Barbara Dawkins, site coordinator for the Buffalo Federations of Neighborhood Centers, said.

Dawkins explained that those individuals need to bring their 1095-A form when filing there income tax return. It’s known as the health insurance marketplace statement.

You should receive it in the mail or can access it online.

Iesha King has health insurance through the marketplace and says filing her return wasn’t a hassle.

“They just asked to see the documentation. They explained Obamacare to me and all the things that are changing. It was very easy,” King said.

The Affordable Care Act mandates everyone to carry health insurance. For those who don’t, they’ll get a penalty. Last year, it was $95.

This year, Dawkins said the penalty for each person varies. “It depends on your income. And there’s a calculation that we have to do before we can even tell you that,” she said.

Shiloh Baptist Church in Buffalo is one of the United Way’s Tax Preparation Network sites. If someone doesn’t have insurance, people can sign up for it right there. You just need proof of income, drivers license, and benefit statements for social security or your pension.

If you sign up after open enrollment ends on February 15, you could face another penalty the next time tax season rolls around.

Here’s a list of the United Way’s Tax Preparation Network sites and times.

United Way's Tax Preparation sites and times

 

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