If this is your first time here, Molly’s Money is a regular series I write on this blog that includes ALL things personal finance – debt management, budgeting, home buying, savings, investment, etc. I am NOT a financial advisor, but I am married to one! These are just things that I have learned over the years as I struggled with my own personal finances and ultimately, became debt free in 2012. Got a question about money that you want answered? Leave it in the comments below or email me!
I will state off the bat that this post is for my American readers… if you are an international reader… thank you SO MUCH for reading… but I know this post is probably not going to be all that applicable or helpful for you. 🙂
For my American readers… this post is for you… and please, don’t let the words “health care” or “taxes” scare you from reading! My goal is to show y’all how you can approach the new changes and my goal is for y’all to be prepared for next year! That’s the whole goal of my money series to begin with… to help y’all with all things personal finance… and taxes, as much as we aren’t really fans of them, definitely fall under the realm of personal finance. Right? Right.
I’m going to try to do this as simply as possible and really break it down for you!
For the first time ever, health care and taxes have come together. I’m sure you know by now about the ACA (Affordable Care Act – aka: “Obamacare”) is the new health care reform that is designed to ensure that everyone has health insurance… but it also imposes tax penalties on those that do not. Since 2014 is the first year that you are required to have health care, 2015 is the first year in which you’ll be reporting that care on your tax filing.
Now, for most Americans, the ACA will hardly (if at all) affect their taxes and really all it will be will be a simple “box check” in the tax filing process.
Taxpayers are going to fall into THREE categories when it comes to ACA and taxes: those who are insured through an employer, those who are insured through health care exchanges, and those who are uninsured.
Let’s break that down a little further…
More than TWO-THIRDS of Americans live paycheck to paycheck… so, it’s really, SO important for so many people that their money doesn’t go to penalties and compliance mumbo jumbo… it should go to actual care.
The average tax refund last year was around $2,800 (Source: IRS). That’s A LOT of money to a lot of people… But, the truth is, that so many people who need that money the most are the people who end up paying the most to get their taxes done because they just have no idea about all the resources that are available to them.
I remember the first year I filed my own taxes, I used TurboTax to help me through the process and I’ve used it every year since then. I love that it gives you the tools to understand the step-by-step process of filing taxes… but I also love that they’ve created TurboTax health that will give you even MORE resources to understand health care and your taxes.
It’s one of those things that yes, can seem a bit overwhelming on the surface, but once you really dig in by using a service like TurboTax, it’s actually a WHOLE lot easier than you realize! Y’all know that I’m a huge advocate of educating yourself on your finances and being prepared… and by doing that earlier, you’re just setting yourself up for success!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.