Come In and Tell Us Your Problem
The Internal Revenue Service has begun scheduling open
forums for taxpayers who need help solving their tax problems. The
forums, known as "problem-solving days," will be held at
least one day per month by local and district IRS offices. For more
information on the forums, contact district or local IRS offices or
call the IRS Office of the Taxpayer Advocate at 800-829-1040.
Congress is likely to consider a "technical corrections" bill
this year intended to clarify provisions of the Taxpayer Relief Act of
1997, such as those governing the sale of a principal residence, the
effective date for partnership returns to be filed on magnetic media and
the determination of adjusted net capital gain.
Under the Microscope
The alternative minimum tax (AMT) may come under congressional scrutiny
in 1998 as the number of taxpayers eligible for AMT filing increases.
According to Kenneth Kies, Joint Committee on Taxation chief of staff,
that figure was 600,000 in 1997 and is expected to grow over the next 10
years to more than 6.2 million as the tax index pushes more
middle-income taxpayers into the AMT.
Congressmen George Gekas (R-Pa.) and Martin Frost (D-Texas) introduced
a bill (HR 2113) that would allow local governments to stop mailing Form
W-2, Wage and Tax Statement
, to election workers who are not expected to have any federal tax
withholding obligations, including Social Security taxes.
The IRS issued the 1998 Form 1099-DIV, Dividends and Distributions
, which employers must file for any individuals they paid a stock
distribution and withheld and paid any foreign tax on that distribution.
A copy of the form must be provided to plan participants by February 1,
1999, and to the IRS by March 1, 1999. Instructions for Form 1099-DIV
can be ordered by calling 800-829-3676.