New tax form will prepare employers this year for 2011 requirements

Posted: Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Internal Revenue Service has released a new draftform for employer relief.

The draft Form W-2 allows employers to report wages and tax withholdings. The IRS also announced it will defer the new requirement for employers to report the cost of coverage under employer-sponsored group health plans.

"Essentially, it makes that reporting optional in 2011," said David Tucker of IRS field media relations.

He said the draft form includes the codes employers may use to report the cost of coverage under an employer-sponsored plan.

A news release states the Treasury Department and the IRS have determined that this relief is necessary to provide employers preparation time they need to makes changes to payroll systems or procedures in order to comply with the new reporting requirement. The new reporting requirement is only meant for informational purposes and to provide employees with greater transparency in overall health care costs.

The release states the IRS will be publishing guidance on this requirement later this year.

"We always want to stress that these reportable amounts are not taxable," Tucker said about the coverage being optional.

The new requirement is included in the Affordable Care Act passed by Congress in March.

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