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The Skyward ACA Training Portal

As part of our commitment to keeping you compliant with the Affordable Care Act, we've built this living library of resources to be your one-stop destination for updates, training, and documentation.





Q: How do we turn on the option to track ACA hours?

A: When you load the October Release, it will automatically be turned on for you. In order to set your selection for how to specifically track an employee’s hours, navigate on the Web to Human Resources > Payroll > Setup > Configuration > ACA Options. This must be done before being able to process payroll.

Employee Profile

Q: If you populate the 1094-C/1095-C browse with a record for January and there are no changes, will Skyward know to duplicate the records for the rest of the year?

A: Yes. You definitely need to have a record for each employee for the month of January but as long as there are no changes to an employee’s coverage or status, there is no need to create additional monthly records. The software knows that if there are no records after January, that there are no changes to report and will fill in the 1095-C form accordingly. The same holds true when crossing calendar years, too. If you enter a 1095 record for September 2015 and nothing changes throughout their stability period ending in August, a new record does not need to be entered in January 2016.

Q: What is Safe Harbor and what do the codes represent?

A: A Safe Harbor is a reason code that is indicative of why the employer did or did not offer someone coverage for a specified period of time. The codes represent the only valid reasons that can be used. Skyward recommends checking with your ACA consultant/tax advisor with any legal questions.

Q: Our District is not self-insured. Do we need to list Covered Individuals on the 1095-C?

A: No. Covered Individuals (CI) are only required if you are self-insured. Currently anyone can enter CI’s, but they will only be reported if you have “self-insured” flag checked in the Configurations.

Q: What is Lowest Cost Premium?

A: The monthly cost to the employee of the lowest-cost self-only coverage offered if the Offer of Coverage is 1B, 1C, 1D, or 1E.

Q: How do you know what Lowest Cost Premium to add to your various employee groups?

A: Skyward recommends checking with your ACA consultant/tax advisor with any legal questions.


Q: Does Skyward have a sample file format for the ACA information import?

A: No. Since this data will be coming from different sources (insurance companies, TPA’s, Risk Management, etc.) Skyward allows the user to create a file format that fits the district’s needs. If you need assistance setting up your file format, contact Skyward and we would be happy to assist you.

Q: When using the ACA import, can you import employees in one file and dependents in another?

A: Yes. You have the option to import one file that includes the employee and dependents or import two files that has the information separated.

Q: When you set up a Mass Process template, can you view the data before actually processing it?

A: Once you set up the template and process it, a Preview Browse generates so that you can verify the data first. If the data is what you are expecting, you can run the Update. If you do not want the employee records to be updated, you have the option to back out of the process and no updates will be made or remove individual employees from the import while importing the other data.

Q: Our insurance plan begins in September of each year. Do we need to generate a 1095 record for January and then another for September?

A: A new record only needs to be created if the 1095 record changes. If there is not a change between the employee’s January and September record then a new record is not needed.

Q: Our Lowest Cost Premiums change half-way through the calendar year. How do I update my employee’s records to reflect the new Premium?

A: A new record must be created any time there is a change in someone’s coverage and/or status. You could use either the ACA 1095 Import or the ACA 1095 Mass Process to update the employee records.

Q: Does loading the new Lowest Cost Premium file over-write any previous data?

A: If the new file is imported using the same Import Year and Month as your previous import, then Yes, the new file will over-write the previous data for that month/year. If the new import file is brought in using a different month/year, then the previous file will retain and will not be overwritten.

Q: Can we use historical data from payrolls that were ran before the October Release to populate the ACA hours from January through September?

A: Yes. We have a utility called “ACA Hours Build from History” which can be used for this purpose. 


Q: In reference to Category Codes, do you have to manually switch New Hires to Ongoing employees?

A: Currently, yes. This can be done manually in Profile or in mass using the ACA Status Mass Process. Skyward is researching automating this process in a future release.

Q: We offer insurance to all of our full time employees. Would we only need to use the Category Codes for our part time employees?

A: Skyward recommends using Category Codes for all employees. They help make reporting easier from year to year, allow you to easily track measurement periods across employee groups, and will be used to automatically calculate parts of the 1094 report (1094-C, part 3, column B).

Q: How do we use Category Codes if we are using the IRS defined “monthly” method and not the “look back” measurement method?

A: Category Codes are designed to work with the look back measurement method since a majority of school districts use this option. Skyward will be adding an option to use a “monthly” Category Code for those districts that do not use the look back measurement method.


Q: Is there a way to correct ACA Hours that were entered incorrectly on a previous payroll?

A: Yes. ACA Hours may be corrected from the ACA Hours tab in Employee Profile or on an upcoming payroll. Skyward also has a utility to import ACA Hours from a spreadsheet if more than a few corrections need to be made.

Q: Do all employees who are entered onto Worksheets need to use the same ACA Date Range?

A: No. Each worksheet can have its own ACA Date Range. There is a mass process that can be used to set those dates and also to update them from one pay period to the next.

Q: How will Skyward calculate ACA Hours if our district uses TrueTime, Employee Management and payroll worksheets (or any combination of these modules)?

A: The ‘Import ACA Hours’ utility has options to indicate whether the additional worksheet pays should replace or add to the existing ACA Hours or leave them unchanged. 
Import ACA Hours

Q: We have some employees who are annualized, which means I mass select their contract each payroll and their overages/shortages go onto a payroll worksheet generated from TrueTime. How do I populate the ACA Hours for these types of employees?

A: The employee is selected onto the payroll like normal by mass selecting their contract and importing the worksheet to account for any overages/shortages. ACA Hours will be populated once the ‘Import ACA Hours’ utility is run. At that point, the system will pull the ACA Hours from their timesheet for the dates indicated on the utility.

Q: We allow for comp time at our district so any hours over 40 may go towards that. How does Skyward handle comp time in regards to ACA Hours?

A: Skyward tracks ACA Hours to the day the employee worked. If an employee uses comp time during a future payroll the district needs to tell Skyward which time off/reason code is used for these transactions. Once that is indicated, Skyward will not count those as ACA Hours for the current payroll since the hours were originally tracked to when the employee worked.
Comp Time

Q: Will stipends need to have ACA hours?

A: Skyward recommends checking with your ACA consultant/tax advisor with any legal questions.

Q: If we use the worksheet utility to import unpaid time off will this process be taken into consideration for tracking ACA Hours accurately?

A: Yes. Regardless of how a dock pay record is entered into payroll, the system will accurately track these hours. EX: Employee’s 40 hour pay record is mass selected along with an 8 hour dock pay record. The system will calculate 32 ACA Hours.

Q: We have employees in Employee Management that are hourly and submit paper timesheets. Should we use the hours from Employee Management or payroll worksheets?

A: Skyward recommends not pulling ACA Hours from Employee Management for any employee who is submitting timesheets. Employee Management is used to annualize an employee’s contract so it might be more work to edit the ACA Hours for nine out of the 10 work days of the payroll. Typically, true hourly employees have their ACA Hours entered on payroll worksheets, during payroll selection or captured in TrueTime.

Q: If someone is in Employee Management and also uses TrueTime will their ACA Hours double if they are selected in both places?

A: No. The ‘ACA Hours Import’ utility works in a hierarchy; TrueTime>Employee Management>Pay Records. If a pay code is entered in more than one module the system will pull the ACA Hours from the highest module. If ACA Hours should be pulled from a specific module for certain employees and not others, a separate template should be set up.
ACA Hierarchy

Q: Why would you want to import ACA Hours for unpaid leave?

A: The IRS indicates that certain types of unpaid leave should be counted towards an employee’s ACA Hours. Typically this is FMLA, military leave, and jury duty. The ‘Import ACA Hours’ utility allows for districts to include these as ACA Hours even though the employee is not being paid for them. Skyward recommends speaking with your ACA consultant/tax advisor with questions regarding which time off codes this effects.


Q: I have my teachers set up with a 12 month measurement period, but I shouldn’t include their summer break in their average calculation. How do I do this in Skyward?

A: The category code would still be set up as a 12 month measurement period and assigned accordingly to the teacher. The ACA Tracker allows users to override the measurement period with a different numbers of months when calculating average ACA Hours. This allows for all hours within the 12 month measurement period to be counted, but those hours would be averaged over 10 months.
Tracker Parameters

Q: How do I see new hires whose measurement period is coming to an end?

A: The ACA Tracker may be run specifically for your new hires. There is an option to report on only new hires whose measurement period is ending in a specific number of months. This allows you to offer those employees insurance coverage in a timely manner.
New Hires


Q: I have a TCC code for submitting my W2s. Do I need to obtain an additional TCC code for submitting my 1094/1095 data?

A: Yes. The TCC code used for submitting your W2s is completely separate from the ACA reporting process. Be sure you apply for your district’s new TCC code as soon as possible to avoid delays in processing and obtaining the number. Here is a link to the TCC Application information: TCC IRS AIR Be sure to follow the instructions for “Issuer”.

Q: The IRS has asked us to do an electronic file check. Is this something that comes from Skyward?

A: Skyward is currently becoming certified as a vendor for the electronic submission of 1095’s, which begins in early November. Once this is complete customers will be able to send a test file through Skyward to the IRS.

Q: What exactly is the ACA Portal and how do you get to it?

A: The ACA Portal is a website that Skyward has created to be your “one-stop” destination for everything ACA. On the Portal, you will have access to documentation, check lists, new enhancements, and manuals to help walk you through the process from start to finish. It is updated frequently to keep you up to date on what Skyward is doing to keep you in compliance. It is located at: A link for it can also be found within SkyDoc under Web Human Resources > Employee.

Q: What forms will we need to order for the paper copies of the 1095? Can we use the same pressure seal forms as the W2?

A: Skyward recommends that you go to the Skyward Support Center > W2/1099/1095 Processing Information for 2015 > and review the information found under the 2015 W2/1099/1095 Ordering link.

Q: Do all employees need to be given a 1095 form?

A: Any employee who is “ACA Full-Time” for at least one month of the year should get a 1095. Skyward recommends speaking with your ACA consultant/tax advisor with questions regarding who is “ACA Full-Time”.

Q: We have “employees” who are not working for our district, but the district is paying for their insurance coverage (retirees, COBRA participants, etc.). How will those people be tracked/reported?

A: The 1095 information should be entered into Profile for any employee receiving a 1095.

Other Skyward Modules

Q: What information can be used from Insurance Tracking?

A: Skyward has a utility to attach the dependents from Insurance Tracking to the employee’s ACA record.
Dependants from Insurance Tracking

Q: We use Skyward’s Sub-Tracking module and import from a 3rd party. Will the ACA Hours be imported into Sub-Tracking?

A: Skyward has a field specifically used for ACA Hours and it can be manually populated or populated from a 3rd party sub tracking system. Skyward recommends working with your 3rd party vendor to verify the correct ACA Hours are importing into Skyward.

Q: We pay subs either a half day or full day. How does this correlate to ACA Hours?

A: If manually entering sub transactions and not using a 3rd party system, the user is responsible for entering the ACA Hours for each record. If importing sub transactions from a 3 rd party, Skyward uses the work amount as the ACA Hours by default. The district should work with their 3rd party if ACA Hours should be pulled from a different field.
See for yourself how the School Business Suite is helping districts everywhere stay accurate and compliant.

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