Blog and News

May
17
2018

Employment Tax Topics


IRS YouTube videos explain certain employment tax topics. In a series of short videos, the IRS covers payroll-related topics that may be of interest to small business owners. Topics include how to voluntarily correct the classification of employees and when and how to report employment taxes withheld from employee paychecks to the IRS. A third video discusses how the IRS tax calendar can help employers keep track of important tax deadlines. Access the IRS YouTube channel here: https://bit.ly/2HQ12Jy

May
15
2018

Private School’s Volunteer Treasurer Requires a Trial





The issue of a penalty for a private school’s volunteer treasurer requires a trial. A U.S. District Court denied summary judgment to the IRS on its imposition of a trust fund recovery penalty. Why? The man’s conduct could make him eligible for a “reasonable cause” exception for being penalized, but a trial is necessary to make that determination. An exception requires that a “responsible person’s” failure to cause withheld payroll taxes to be paid over to the IRS isn’t willful if the person reasonably believed the taxes were being paid.

May
10
2018

U.S. Citizens Working Abroad





The IRS has corrected a previous notice that lists housing cost exclusions for U.S. citizens working abroad. Those citizens having a tax home in a foreign country and who meet specific requirements may be able to exclude certain housing costs from their gross income. The excludable amount is the excess of the year’s housing expense over a base amount of $16,624 in 2018 (previously reported as $16,656 in Notice 2018-33). That limit is adjusted for higher cost areas,

Mar
27
2018

Federal Budget





The Trump administration’s 2019 budget proposal includes repeal of the Affordable Care Act. Released on Feb. 12, the proposal also includes establishing HSAs for Medicare beneficiaries, providing incentives for states to build unemployment insurance reserves, and providing the IRS with $11.1 billion in “base funding.” That includes $2.3 billion for “running key tax filing and compliance IT applications” and $110 million for “IT modernization efforts.” Although many of the proposals are unlikely to become law,

Mar
20
2018

Calling the IRS





Calling the IRS? Be sure you can verify your identity. The IRS issued a reminder to taxpayers, and those who are authorized to speak on their behalf, that before they call the tax agency they should have the following ready: 1) Social Security number (SSN) and birthdate for those named on the tax return in question; 2) an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number if the individual has one in lieu of an SSN;

Mar
13
2018

Affordable Care Act






The IRS has released updated questions and answers (Q&A) that provide guidance on the employer shared responsibilities under the Affordable Care Act, including 2018 penalties. Applicable large employers (ALEs) must offer health insurance to full-time employees and are generally assessed penalties for failing to do so. Whether an employer is an ALE depends on the size of its workforce. Here are the Q&As: http://bit.ly/28MZtKE

Mar
06
2018

Watch out for Tax Scams





Be on alert for new tax scams. The IRS is warning about new ways thieves are stealing from taxpayers. In one scam, criminals pose as debt collection agency officials acting on behalf of the IRS. They contact taxpayers to say refunds were deposited in their accounts in error. They ask the taxpayers to send the money back. In another scam, taxpayers receive automated calls saying erroneous refunds were deposited and threatening criminal charges and “blacklisting”

Mar
02
2018

Renew 2018 State Licenses or Face Penalty


Businesses urged to renew 2018 State Licenses due January 1 or face penalty.

Feb
27
2018

Tax Rules for Alimony





The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) will be changing the tax rules of the road for alimony. Under current rules, individuals who pay alimony or maintenance can deduct an amount equal to the payments made during the year as an “above-the-line” deduction. And, under current rules, alimony and maintenance payments are taxable to recipients. But under the TCJA, there’s no deduction for alimony for the payers and alimony isn’t gross income to the recipients.

Feb
15
2018

Watch out for potential tax pitfalls of donating real estate to charity


Charitable giving allows you to help an organization you care about and, in most cases, enjoy a valuable income tax deduction. If you’re considering a large gift, a noncash donation such as appreciated real estate can provide additional benefits. For example, if you’ve held the property for more than one year, you generally will be able to deduct its full fair market value and avoid any capital gains tax you’d owe if you sold the property.