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Fixing TIN (SSN) Validation Errors from the IRS

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Estimated reading time: 4 min

KB14-059

By far the most common error message received from the IRS on a given employee’s 1095-C form are the two in red above. In IRS speak, this means a social security number (SSN) that was specified on the 1095-C does not match what the IRS database has on file for the name provided. This could be for either:

  1. The employee themselves and/or (the second one in red above)
  2. An employee dependent (if part III of the 1095-C was populated) (the first one in red above)

The IRS does not indicate which data element may be in error (Name or SSN), it only says the combination doesn’t match. Therefore, you need to check both the spelling of the person’s or dependent’s name AND potentially the SSN.

Common reasons for mismatches are:

  1. Use of maiden name or married name in the system when IRS has something else on file
  2. Mis-typed information or bad data entry
  3. Employees using fraudulent SSN numbers (common for non-citizens)

As an employer you are expected to go to some reasonable measure of effort to secure the correct combination of SSN and Name for the forms. IRS publication 1586 generally outlines these efforts and guidelines for that. This document is somewhat intimidating and complex, but in general as long as the employer conducts 3 solicitations from the employee for correct information, (and in a given timeframe) then they will have met reasonable standards for attempting to get correct information. Yet there are situations where:

  1. Employer cannot obtain the correct information (non-compliance by employee or employee leaves)
  2. Employer has verified that the information is indeed correct, but IRS has stale information

In those cases there is nothing you can do to force a resolution. Employers need only demonstrate they made reasonable attempts to obtain the information.
Whether you are able to make a correction or not, the steps for addressing this in the Integrity ACA solution are similar. You first begin with the IRS filing page where your first indication of such an error is indicated.

 

The Company DBI has an error and we don’t yet know what it is. Clicking “Edit” allows us to see and make potential corrections:

The screen changes to this and looks like Sebastian Jones has an error:

 

Click the error report to see what the error is: