This is the one-stop shop for all the updates you need to know for this year’s tax filing season. Find resources from the JofA and The Tax Adviser, plus tax return checklists and tax savings tips from the AICPA, categorized by tax topic.
IRS Issues Inflation Updates for Automobile Depreciation Deduction Limits
April 10, 2009
The IRS issued Revenue Procedure 2009-24 that provides 2009 inflation adjustments to the depreciation limitations and lease inclusion amounts for certain automobiles.
IRS Grants Relief to Midwest Flood Victims
April 5, 2009
The IRS said victims of the severe floods in Minnesota and North Dakota will have an extra month, until May 15, to file their 2008 individual tax returns and pay any tax due.
IRS Revises Inflation Adjustment Amounts
March 31, 2009
The IRS issued Rev. Proc. 2009-21, which modifies the inflation-adjusted amounts to be used for certain tax credits in 2008 and 2009. The modified numbers reflect recent statutory changes by the Tax Extenders and Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act of 2008 (Tax Extenders Act) and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Guidance Issued on Splitting $1 Million Mortgage Limit
March 26, 2009
The IRS Office of Chief Counsel has issued a memorandum outlining how partial owners of a principal residence with a mortgage bigger than $1 million should handle their mortgage deduction.
IRS Releases Guidance for Ponzi Scheme Investors
March 19, 2009
Because the Ponzi scheme perpetrated by Bernard Madoff involved potentially thousands of taxpayers, the IRS has issued guidance on the tax aspects of losses from a Ponzi scheme and created a safe harbor under which investors can claim theft loss deductions.
Green Energy Incentives Among Recovery Act's Tax Provisions
March 9, 2009
From fitting a home with energy-efficient windows to harnessing the power of waves and tides, activities that conserve energy or produce it from clean and renewable sources enjoy new or expanded tax credits in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
How to Navigate the New Rules for Excluding Vacation Home Gain
March 4, 2009
Last year's Housing Assistance Tax Act made significant changes to how taxpayers can treat gain from the sale of a residence that had been a vacation home or other second home. Starting Jan. 1, some periods count as "nonqualified," and sellers are no longer able to exclude gain attributable to any nonqualified period, requiring new strategies to minimize tax on the gains.
IRS Releases New Withholding Tables
Feb. 24, 2009
The IRS on Monday released withholding tables that reflect a new tax credit, dubbed the making work pay credit, created by the stimulus package.
Individual Tax Breaks in the Stimulus Bill
Feb. 15, 2009
With its new and expanded tax benefits for individuals, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 seeks to get more money into the pockets of American consumers.
What to Do If a Client Is Missing a W-2
Feb. 13, 2009
Employers had until Feb. 2 to issue Forms W-2 to their employees, showing wages and earnings for 2008. If a client hasn’t received a W-2 by now, here are the steps the IRS says to take.
Taxes in Troubled Times: Recessionary Tax Strategies
Feb. 10, 2009
The JofA asked AICPA Tax Section Vice President Tom Ochsenschlager to describe some recessionary tax strategies for clients of CPA tax advisers and traps to avoid when financial market bears rule the day.
Late February 1099-B Mailings Will Compress Tax Season for Many
Feb. 8, 2009
Fidelity, the nation’s largest mutual fund company, asked for and received from the IRS an additional extension to the end of February, said company spokesman Steve Austin. The company intends to send most Forms 1099-B before the Feb. 17 deadline.
Early Tax Returns Show Numerous Recovery Rebate Errors
Feb. 3, 2009
The IRS reported on Jan. 30 that an early sampling of this year’s tax returns shows great confusion about last year’s recovery rebate. According to the Service, about 15% of all individual tax returns filed so far contain errors involving the recovery rebate credit.
Effects of Emergency Economic Stabilization Act Provisions on Individuals
Jan. 21, 2009
On October 3, 2008, President Bush signed into law the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, P.L. 110-343. The act provides alternative minimum tax (AMT) relief, energy tax credits, and disaster relief for individuals.
IRS Explains How Unmarried Taxpayers Allocate First-Time Homebuyer Credit
Jan. 19, 2009
The IRS has issued Notice 2009-12 to explain how the IRC § 36 first-time homebuyer credit should be allocated between unmarried taxpayers who buy a principal residence together.
Tax Season Launches
Jan. 16, 2009
The 2009 income tax filing season got under way Friday, Jan. 16, as the IRS began accepting electronic filing of returns due April 15 for calendar year 2008.
The Tax Adviser: Update on Tax Laws Governing Individuals
A number of credits and other items that were scheduled to expire – or had already expired – were extended by the Tax Extenders Act of 2008.
Video: Roundup of Recent and Potential Tax Legislation
AICPA President and CEO Barry Melancon, CPA, gives a summary of tax legislative changes from 2008 and a glimpse of what could be on the horizon for 2009.
2008 Tax Return Checklists
The 2008 Tax Practice Guides and Checklists are now available online to all AICPA Tax Section members. If you are not an AICPA Tax Section member, click here to join to get access to these valuable resources. If you have questions, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-513-3037 for more information.
Tax Season Resources–Brochure, Speech and PowerPoint
Help your clients maximize savings opportunities on their 2008 returns. TheAICPA’s Tax Saving Tips for 2008 client resources are now available for free download. This year’s brochure, speech and PowerPoint presentation include the latest information on energy tax incentives, disaster area tax relief, extended mortgage foreclosure tax relief, and the AMT patch.
The Tax Adviser: Significant Recent Developments in Estate Planning
This article examines developments in estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer tax planning and compliance between June 2007 and May 2008.
The Tax Adviser: Distressed S Corporations and Tax Issues Involved in Restructuring
A financially distressed S corporation may have to work with its creditors to restructure debt or satisfy indebtedness in various creative ways in order to ease its financial difficulties.
IRS Provides Guidance on Small Business Loss Carrybacks
March 18, 2009
The IRS issued guidance on how eligible small businesses may take advantage of the enhanced net operating loss (NOL) carryback provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
The Tax Adviser: Current Corporate Income Tax Developments
During 2008, there were many changes in the area of state and local corporate income taxation, including nexus, tax base and allocable/apportionable income.
IRS Lowers Interest Rates on Over- and Underpayments
March 12, 2009
The IRS announced that interest rates on tax overpayments and underpayments will drop by one percentage point for the quarter starting April 1.
Reminder: Support Your Auto Expenses
Feb. 23, 2009
Auto expenses are a very common deduction for business owners and employees who must travel. Tax preparers should remind their clients to have proper substantiation or, if the IRS examines the return, the deduction will more than likely be denied.
Small Business Tax Breaks in the Stimulus Bill
Feb. 15, 2009
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 contains numerous tax provisions aimed at small businesses.
IRS Issues Further Guidance on Loss Corporations Acquired in Bailout
Feb. 4, 2009
The IRS has issued a second notice (Notice 2009-14) that expands on, clarifies, and supersedes the guidance issued in Notice 2008-100 on the application of IRC § 382 to loss corporations whose instruments Treasury acquires pursuant to the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) under the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008.
The Tax Adviser: Current Developments in Partners and Partnerships
The Treasury and the IRS worked to provide guidance for taxpayers on numerous changes that had been made to subchapter K in the past few years.
IRS Issues Further Guidance on 50% First-Year Bonus Depreciation
Jan. 29, 2009
The IRS issued Rev. Proc. 2009-16, which provides further guidance on how taxpayers can elect out of the bonus depreciation provision added by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008.
Automatic Penalty Assertions Begin for Delinquent Forms 5471
Jan. 26, 2009
In December, the IRS posted to its Web site guidance encouraging taxpayers to submit delinquent Forms 5471, Information Return of U.S. Persons With Respect to Certain Foreign Corporations, before Jan. 1, 2009—the date on which the Service began to automatically assert appropriate penalties under IRC § 6038 on late-filed Forms 1120, U.S. Corporation Income Tax Return, with Forms 5471 attached.
IRS Issues Guidance on Electing Out of 50% Additional First-Year Depreciation
Jan. 21, 2009
Sec. 168(k)(4) allows corporations to elect out of claiming the 50% additional first-year depreciation for new property acquired after March 31, 2008, and placed in service before January 1, 2009.
Private Companies and FIN 48
Jan. 17, 2009
The good news is that on Oct. 15, 2008, FASB deferred the effective date of FASB Interpretation No. 48, Accounting for Uncertainty in Income Taxes (FIN 48), for all nonpublic companies for one year. The bad news is that the year is up already.
The Tax Adviser: Significant Recent Corporate Developments
The Service and Treasury have issued several packages of final, temporary, and proposed regulations covering a broad spectrum of corporate and consolidated issues.
The Tax Adviser: Current Developments in S Corporations (Part 1 and Part 2)
October 2008 & November 2008
This two-part article examines recent S corporation operational tax issues and S corporation eligibility, elections and termination issues.
The Redesigned Form 990
Most nonprofit organizations are now reviewing their first redesigned IRS Form 990 and its many new information requirements designed to enhance transparency and accountability. CPAs with nonprofit clients now are seeing the pieces fit together with satisfaction or, if drawing together the information has been difficult, perhaps with some concern.
Video: Regulations Under IRS Section 7216
Feb. 6, 2009
Tom Ochsenschlager, CPA, AICPA vice president—taxation, outlines provisions of IRS section 7216 and how to ensure compliance during times of strict enforcement.
New Regs Govern Overseas Disclosure and Use of Taxpayer Information
Jan. 22, 2009
The IRS issued final regulations under Sec. 7216 that were effective on January 1, 2009 (T.D. 9375). The purpose of these regulations is to update the existing rules to address current tax industry practices, such as electronic preparation and filing, expanded tax and nontax service offerings, and resource sharing across national borders.
IRS Issues Final Preparer Penalty Regs
Jan. 19, 2009
The IRS issued proposed regulations under Sec. 6694 (REG-129243-07) in June 2008, before the enactment of the Tax Extenders Act, which retroactively replaced the more likely than not (MLTN) standard as the general standard for the application of the tax return preparer penalty with the substantial authority standard. The proposed regulations have been modified as necessary to conform to the change in the standard.
New Tax Disclosure Regulations Under IRS Sec. 7216 Now in Effect
IRS regulations on the disclosure or use of tax return information went into effect January 1. This AICPA Tax Section practice guide provides examples of consent forms developed by CPA members for discussions or consultations with clients. For more details on the rules now in effect, read this Tax Adviser article.
IRS Announces Revisions to Form 941
March 3, 2009
Employers will use the revised form to claim the new COBRA premium assistance payments credit, which was introduced by the recent stimulus act, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
IRS Issues Final Regs on Automatic Contribution Arrangements
Feb. 25, 2009
The Service issued final regulations on automatic contribution arrangements for 401(k) and other eligible plans. The regulations adopt with modifications the 2007 proposed regulations providing guidance on implementing provisions of the Pension Protection Act of 2006 and the Worker, Retiree, and Employer Recovery Act of 2008.
Subsequent Deferrals Under Section 409A
Feb. 1, 2009
Nonqualified deferred compensation plans must now comply with a vast set of new rules, which include the subsequent deferral election rules, which could bring unpleasant surprises for employers and employees.
IRS Updates Maximum Values for Employee Automobile Use
Jan. 21, 2009
The IRS has updated for 2009 the maximum allowable value of an employer-provided vehicle for which the cents-per-mile and fleet-average rules may be used in determining the value of an employee’s personal use of the vehicle as a taxable fringe benefit.
The Tax Adviser: Developments in Employee Benefits and Pensions (Part I and Part II)
November 2008 & December 2008
This two-part article covers significant developments in employee benefits, including executive compensation, welfare benefits and qualified retirement plans.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES TO CHECK FOR ASSISTANCE
Keep up to date through various additional resources for tax preparers: