Reporting health insurance cost on W-2 optional for 2011

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Oct. 25, 2010

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One requirement of health system reform legislation that affects employers will be deferred for at least a year, according to an Internal Revenue Service statement issued Oct. 12.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires reporting the cost of employer-sponsored health insurance on W-2 forms for 2011. The intention is to make employees more aware of health care costs and how much companies are spending on the benefit.

The agency issued a draft copy of the new form, but reporting how much a company spends on health insurance will be optional for 2011 (link). The IRS, along with the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury, made this decision because employers need more time to make the necessary changes to payroll systems to comply.

Additional guidance on this reporting requirement is scheduled to be published later this year.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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