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Tax Changes Are Coming – New Rules On Divorces And Home Buying

With the end of this season we also see the end of tax laws as they have been for decades. Now we have to look ahead and make sure there won’t be any unpleasant surprises and taxpayers will be subject to the new laws.

If you are planning on a divorce this year, you’ll want to review the new rulings. If you’re buying a new home, again, you’ll want to make sure you are clear about whether or not you can write off the interest on your loan. Read more

One Of The Latest Tax Scams To Be Aware Of And How It Works

I have written frequently about the multitude of tax scams.

And once again, the scammers have found a way to play to and outwit your insatiable curiosity. Here’s one of the latest scams to be aware of, and how it works.

Scammers know that more and more people are screening and not answering calls from unrecognized or private numbers. So now, the crooks have developed software that allows them to display irresistible ‘fake’ numbers. Read more

No Matter How Long It Has Been Since You’ve Filed Your Taxes, You Are Not Alone

Yet there are many people who are contemplating not filing this year because they didn’t file last year. Taxation Solutions is a team of professionals that frequently encounters clients who, for various reasons, have not filed tax returns for one, two, or several years.

Believe me, you are not alone. There are thousands of people who haven’t filed in multiple years. But, let me tell you, you’ll enjoy getting a good night’s sleep once you get back on track with the IRS. Most people don’t realize the energy required to carry the burden of delinquent taxes. We are devoted to helping taxpayers make things right with the IRS. Read more

Claiming Parents As Dependents On Income Taxes

As more and more Baby Boomers are caring for elderly parents, the question often arises: “Can I claim my parent(s) as dependents on my taxes?” The answer to that is, “It depends.”

The IRS does allow parents to be claimed as dependents if certain requirements are met. The IRS always has requirements.

To meet the support requirements necessary to claim your parent as a dependent on your tax return, you must cover 51% or more of their support costs. These costs include food, housing or lodging expenses, clothing, and medical services and/or equipment costs. Read more

Do Not Let Cryptocurrency Crimp Your Relationship With The IRS

Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are becoming more popular as a form of payment and as investment. However, there has been little attention paid to how this virtual currency will be treated by the IRS until now. In fact, the IRS is taking a much closer look and has established some tax guidelines.

According to an article published in accountingtoday.com, “For federal tax purposes, virtual currency is treated as property and not currency.” They add, “The fair market value of the virtual currency on the date of receipt determines the taxpayer’s basis.”

Some businesses are actually paying employee wages in virtual currency instead of U.S. dollars. Read more

An Unexpected Refund From The IRS Spells S-C-A-M

If you happen to notice an automatic deposit made in your bank account from the IRS or you get a refund check in the mail that you weren’t expecting, you are likely the victim of the latest tax scam.

On February 13th, the IRS released a warning to alert taxpayers to a fast growing new scam that uses stolen taxpayer’s information to fraudulently file taxes then deposit refunds into real bank accounts.

Once Deposit Is Made, The Criminals Make Contact

The IRS makes it clear that the criminals use a variety of tactics to get the fraudulent refund from the taxpayers. And, as the IRS points out the tactics are probably evolving, so you’ll want to stay alert.

In one version of the scam, criminals posing as debt collection agency officials acting on behalf of the IRS contacted the taxpayers to say a refund was deposited in error, and they asked the taxpayers to forward the money to their collection agency. Read more

Is Your Cryptocurrency IRS Approved?

Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are becoming more popular as a form of payment and as investment. However, there has been little attention paid to how this virtual currency will be treated by the IRS until now. In fact, the IRS is taking a much closer look and has established some tax guidelines.

According to an article published in accountingtoday.com, “For federal tax purposes, virtual currency is treated as property and not currency.” They add, “The fair market value of the virtual currency on the date of receipt determines the taxpayer’s basis.”

Some Businesses Are Actually Paying Employee Wages In Virtual Currency Instead Of U.S. Dollars Read more

Deferred Compensation, Part VII: Profit-Sharing

Adding a profit-sharing component to your 401(k) plan can increase your contributions while also motivating employees.  All of the previously-discussed rules apply: you can’t have a top-heavy plan, you can’t discriminate in favor of certain employees, etc…

Here’s a general description of what’s involved from the code:

A profit-sharing plan is a plan established and maintained by an employer to provide for the participation in his profits by his employees or their beneficiaries. Read more

Deferred Compensation, Part VI: Minimum Participation Standards

In general, a plan cannot specifically require that employees work for the company at least 1 year or attain the minimum age of 21.  For large employers with several divisions, this can happen accidentally.

Here are two examples from the accompanying Treasury Regulations:

Example 1. Corporation A is divided into two divisions. In order to work in division 2 an employee must first have been employed in division 1 for 5 years. A plan provision which required division 2 employment for participation will be treated as a service requirement because such a provision has the effect of requiring 5 years of service. Read more

How Soon You’ll See The Results Of The New Tax Bracket

If you’re an American taxpayer who gets a paycheck, I imagine you’re pretty anxious to see how the new tax code is going to put more money into your pockets each pay period.

The IRS says they should have everything ready to reflect the changes by February. So, you could be seeing extra cash if you are in the top five tax brackets with your February paycheck. Read more

Deferred Compensation, Part IV: Non-Discrimination

According to §401(a)(4), a deferred compensation plan cannot discriminate in favor of highly compensated employees (HCEs), which is a person who either owned 5% of the business at any time during the year or made more than $80,000 (inflation-adjusted) during the preceding year.

The regulations provide two safe-harbor tests for defined contribution plans (which comprise the vast bulk of 401ks).  Read more

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