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Tax Hacks 2016: The Best Tax Apps

Just in time for tax season, Intuit has launched a new portal that helps entrepreneurs navigate the complexities of the Affordable Care Act.

With tax time fast approaching, you need to make sure your business is in compliance with the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The act can be confusing for companies that need to keep track of changes to ensure that they meet employee coverage mandates, but sole proprietors have to prove they have acceptable coverage as well. To help, Intuit, the online accounting and tax software company, has launched a free online Affordable Care Act Resource Center that provides answers to many common questions in one place.

While much of the information is geared toward tax professionals, the portal has a dedicated small business channel that business owners, too, might find useful. It contains a summary of the law's provisions, including new phase-in periods for the mandate, basics on tax penalties, and information about the tax credit available to small business owners who provide health care plans to their employees.

For example, there's a section outlining the law's provisions for 2015, which require businesses with 100 or more full-time employees to offer qualified health plans, as well as for 2016, when businesses with just 50 or more full-time employees are required to do so.

Additionally, the portal explains what types of workers qualify as full-time employees, shows which Internal Revenue Service forms they need to file in order to prove compliance or to receive a credit, and offers information about penalties. There's also key information about the coverage employees are required to have if they aren't covered through work, in order to comply with the law's mandate for individuals.

Lastly, Intuit's ACA center has a number of interactive tools for tax professionals that business owners may find useful, offered through its Lacerte, ProSeries, and Intuit Tax Online services.

While both the IRS and federal government have their own portals dedicated to the ACA, with plenty of information business owners need, Intuit's portal is a helpful addition for entrepreneurs who want to make sure they've complied with the law by April 15.

"New ACA tax forms are one of the biggest tax changes for businesses since the W-2, and there is a lot of misinformation out there," an Intuit spokeswoman told Inc. in an email. "[Intuit] created the Affordable Care Act Resource Center to provide business owners and tax professionals with a central place to get the right, up-to-date information."

RELATED: Important tax dates to know
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The place to go before you do your business taxes

January 15, 2016: Those who are self-employed or have fourth-quarter income that requires payment for quarterly estimated taxes must have them postmarked by this date

(Photo via Tetra Images/Getty Images)

April 18, 2016: Individual tax returns are due for the 2015 tax year

(Photo via Alamy)

April 18, 2016: Requests for an extension on filling out your taxes must be filed by this date

(Photo by Chris Fertnig via Getty Images)

April 18, 2016: Those who are self-employed or have first-quarter income that requires payment for quarterly estimated taxes must have them postmarked by this date

(Photo via Alamy)

April 18, 2016: This date is also the deadline to make a contribution to an IRA account for 2015

(Photo by Garry L., Shutterstock)

June 15, 2016: Those who are self-employed or have second-quarter income that requires payment for quarterly estimated taxes must have them postmarked by this date

(Photo via Shutterstock)

September 15, 2016: Those who are self-employed or have second-quarter income that requires payment for quarterly estimated taxes must have them postmarked by this date

(Photo via Shutterstock)

October 17, 2016: 2015 tax returns that received an extension are due by this date

(Photo by Juan Camilo Bernal via Getty Images)

October 17, 2016: Today is the last chance to recharacterize a traditional IRA that was converted to a Roth IRA during 2015

(Photo via Getty Images)

January 15, 2017: Those who are self-employed or have fourth-quarter income that requires payment for quarterly estimated taxes must have them postmarked by this date

(Photo by Pascal Broze via Getty Images)

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