PARSIPPANY, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jackson Hewitt Tax Service®, one of the nation’s largest tax preparers, commissioned a survey of American adults to understand tax-related attitudes and awareness as we began the second half of the 2015 tax season. One of the key learnings was that nearly half (48%) of respondents believe that the deadline to register for 2015 healthcare coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has expired, demonstrating that people are not aware that the deadline to enroll has been extended until the end of April. Another 27 percent “don’t know” if the enrollment period has expired or not.
“Our survey results clearly show that Americans don’t know that many can still sign up for health insurance and avoid the tax penalty this year,” said David Prokupek, CEO of Jackson Hewitt. “Even more don’t realize that they may qualify for the premium tax credit, which will lower their health insurance costs. We encourage anyone with questions to visit one of our 6300 locations to get free guidance from one of our tax professionals.”
The "special enrollment period" is an excellent opportunity for millions of consumers, in states with a Federally-facilitated Marketplace, who were unaware or didn’t understand the implications of the fee for not enrolling in coverage. This allows those who did not sign up for healthcare coverage to enroll and avoid additional fees next year. The tax penalty for being uninsured in 2015 is $325 per adult and $162.50 per child, or up to 2 percent of household income, whichever is greater.
“At Jackson Hewitt, we see ourselves as more than tax preparers and believe passionately in the power of access to healthcare to positively impact the lives of our clients,” said Prokupek. “This season we’re seeing confusion related to ACA requirements and it’s giving us the opportunity to educate and help people even more. So in an effort to truly be the antidote to our hard-working clients’ anxieties, we’re committed to making a major corporate push to help the uninsured take advantage of this second chance to enroll in health coverage and avoid tax penalties.”
Jackson Hewitt has also partnered with GetInsured, a leading online health insurance marketplace, to make accessing tax credits and signing up for health insurance easy. By answering a few simple questions during the tax interview, clients will understand if they qualify for money-saving tax credits, and with the help of GetInsured, can enroll in a health insurance plan that fits their budget.
“In addition to welcoming folks into our offices, we will be harnessing the reach of our online and social media platforms, and working with our partners at GetInsured to get the word out about the special enrollment period,” said Prokupek.
About the Survey Results:
In a survey conducted March 5-8, 2015 by ORC International, they questioned 1,011 consumers by telephone, using randomly selected landline and mobile telephone numbers. (Of the 1,011 interviews, 509 were from the landline sample and 502 from the mobile sample.) The combined sample consisted of 1,011 adults (18 years old and older) living in the continental United States. The margin of error for the sample of 1,011 is +/- 3.08 at the 95% confidence level. Final data is weighted by age, gender, region, race/ethnicity and education to be proportionally representative of the U.S. adult population.
About Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc.
Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. is a leading full service multi-channel tax preparation company with approximately 6,300 franchised and company-owned locations including nearly 3,000 locations in Walmart stores throughout the United States. Jackson Hewitt also provides a full suite of online and mobile tax filing solutions for the “do-it-yourself” marketplace at www.jacksonhewittonline.com. We hold our approximately 25,000 professional and certified tax preparers to the highest standards in the industry and stand behind our work with our Biggest Refund and 100% Accuracy Guarantees. For more information, product and offer details, or to locate your neighborhood Jackson Hewitt office, visit www.jacksonhewitt.com or call 1-800.234.1040.