IRS issues new maximum values for employer-provided vehicles
In Notice 2017-3, the IRS set the 2017 inflation-adjusted maximum vehicle values for purposes of determining the amount included in employees' income for personal use of an employer-provided vehicle under the fleet-average valuation rule (Regs. Sec. 1.61-21(d)): $21,100 for a passenger automobile and $23,300 for a truck or van. The auto amount is slightly lower than for 2016 ($21,200), and the truck or van amount is slightly higher than for 2016 ($23,100). Also, the notice provided the 2017 maximum values for which the Regs. Sec. 1.61-21(e) cents-per-mile method may be used to calculate taxable personal use of employer-provided vehicles: $15,900 for a passenger automobile and $17,800 for a truck or van. The latter is a slight increase from 2016 ($17,700), while the former is unchanged.
IRS adds former school to student loan discharge exception
In Rev. Proc. 2017-24, the IRS extended relief from cancellation-of-debt income recognition to former students of American Career Institutes Inc. (ACI) whose federal student loans are discharged under the Department of Education's "defense to repayment" or "closed school" discharge processes. ACI students thus are added to those of Corinthian Colleges Inc. who are eligible for relief as described in Rev. Proc. 2015-57 (see "Tax Practice Corner: Tax Relief for Federal Student Loan Forgiveness," JofA, Aug. 2016). The Department of Education estimates that 4,400 students who attended ACI are eligible for loan discharges. In a 2016 consent order, ACI admitted it made false and misleading statements to students about job placement rates and employed unqualified instructors. The school, which closed in 2013, offered training in health and information technology at campuses in Maryland and Massachusetts.
Estates may rely on transcript for closing confirmation
In Notice 2017-12, the IRS stated that its account transcript of an estate can serve as confirmation that it has closed its examination of the estate's return. Since June 2015, the Service has been issuing estate tax closing letters only upon request. Estates and their representatives must request the transcript using Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return, rather than the IRS's online Transcript Delivery Service.