The Internal Revenue Service’s computer systems miscalculated the allowable Premium Tax Credits for more than 27,000 taxpayers who received subsidies for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, according to a new report.
The report, from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, evaluated the effectiveness of the IRS’s verification of health care tax credit claims during the 2015 filing season. According to the IRS, almost $11 billion in Advance Premium Tax Credits were paid to insurers in fiscal year 2014. As of June 11, 2015, the IRS processed more than 2.9 million tax returns involving the Premium Tax Credit, and taxpayers received approximately $9.8 billion in PTCs that were either received in advance or claimed at filing.
The ACA requires health insurance exchanges to provide the IRS with information regarding individuals who are enrolled by the exchange on a monthly basis. The data is referred to as Exchange Periodic Data, or EPD. TIGTA’s analysis of more than 2.6 million tax returns with a PTC claim that were filed between January 20, 2015, and May 28, 2015, for which the IRS had EPD, found that the IRS accurately determined the allowable PTC on more than 2.4 million (93 percent) returns.
TIGTA said, however, that it is continuing to work with the IRS to determine the cause for calculation differences in 150,385 of the remaining 182,884 (7 percent) tax returns. Computer programming errors resulted in an incorrect computation of the allowable PTC for 27,827 tax returns. For 4,672 tax returns, the IRS did not have the authority to correct the PTC claim during processing.