Marketplace Coverage Affordability Worksheet

Several exemptions are available for the Affordable Care Act. Many of the exemptions are simple and only require tax preparers to look up a value in a table. The exemption for income below the filing threshold is a simple one to look up. Similarly, in states like Texas, an exemption available for household income below 138% of federal poverty level is also easy to find. One of the ACA exemptions, however, requires some calculations. The calculations aren't particularly complex, but the tax preparer must look up at least four different items when calculating marketplace coverage affordability.

The steps for calculating the exemption can be found in a worksheet in the instructions for form 8965, but  I've simplified the process with an intelligent PDF Worksheet. The PDF form looks a lot like the worksheet in the instructions, but it has links to simplify looking up the needed information. Also, the form self-calculates the amounts, and you can save or print and include it with the workpapers.  The worksheet can be downloaded from http://tylerhosting.com/b2e/media/blogs/dbell/acaaffordabilityworksheet.pdf. Of course, if this inspires you to create a similar worksheet in Excel, that's okay too.

Line 1 requires a lookup of the lowest cost bronze plan for the taxpayer(s). The link for this is at the top of the form. Line 4 requires entry of the federal poverty level, which is found in the 8962 instructions. Line 7 requires entry of the applicable figure from the table in the 8962 instructions. Line 10 requires a lookup of the second lowest cost silver plan for the taxpayer(s).

About the only calculation you will have to do is figure household income according to Form 8965 instructions. If the calculation is for a single person who has lived at the same place all year, it's an easy process. If, however, there is more than one person in the household, they have lived in more than one place, or some members of the household have insurance, the calculations can be time consuming.

Note that this is only a tool and may have limitations I haven't noticed. Also, tax knowledge is required to calculate and use the affordability correctly.

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