The first tax-filing season under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) was a time of uncertainty for many businesses as they struggled with the implications of the law’s sweeping changes for their bottom lines. With the next filing season on the horizon, you can incorporate the lessons learned into your year-end tax planning. Several areas in particular are ripe with opportunities to reduce your 2019 federal tax liability.Read More
Autumn has arrived and that means it’s time to turn your attention to year-end tax planning. While several clear strategies and tactics emerged during the first tax filing season under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), 2019 and subsequent years bring potential twists that must be considered, too. Let’s take a closer look at year-end tax planning strategies that can reduce your 2019 income tax liability.Read More
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released the finalized rule on overtime exemptions for white-collar workers under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The rule updates the standard salary levels for the first time since 2004. While it is expected to expand the pool of nonexempt workers by more than 1 million, it’s also more favorable to employers than a rule proposed by the Obama administration in 2016. That rule would have expanded the pool by more than 4 million but was blocked by a federal district court judge.
The new rule is scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2020. Affected employers need to take prompt action to reduce the impact to their bottom lines.Read More
Earlier this year, the IRS published a proposed safe harbor giving owners of certain rental real estate interests the opportunity to take advantage of the qualified business income (QBI) deduction. The QBI write-off was created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) for pass-through entities. The IRS has now released final guidance (Revenue Procedure 2019-38) on the safe harbor that clearly lays out the requirements that taxpayers must satisfy to benefit.Read More
Topics: Tax Planning & Strategies
The IRS has released final regulations and another round of proposed regs for the first-year 100% bonus depreciation deduction. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) expanded the deduction to 100% if the qualified property is placed in service through 2022, with the amount dropping each subsequent year by 20%, until it sunsets in 2027. (The phaseout reductions are delayed a year for certain property with longer production periods.) Of course, Congress could act before that to extend or revise the deduction.Read More
House Bills 62 and 166 were signed by Ohio Governor Mike DeWine on August 23, 2019. These bills will enact several important changes to the Ohio income tax law for the 2019 tax year. These changes will apply to income tax returns due on April 15, 2020.
The upcoming tax changes are explained below:
• Ohio is combining the bottom three tax brackets. The tax rate for the new configuration is 0%. This means taxpayers with Ohio Taxable Nonbusiness income of $21,750 or less will pay $0 in Ohio income tax.
• All Ohio income tax rates have been reduced by 4%. The top tax rate is now 4.797%.
• There will be no adjustment for Ohio’s personal and dependent exemption amounts for 2019. The 2019 adjustments will be the same as tax year 2018.Read More
On August 14, 2019, the IRS announced it would waive estimated tax penalties for eligible 2018 taxpayers. This will effect around 400,000 tax filers who have already filed their 2018 federal tax return according to the IRS.
If you have already filed your 2018 federal tax return and are eligible for the waiver, there is no need to contact the IRS or apply for the waiver. The waiver will automatically be applied to your tax account by the IRS.Read More
Topics: Tax Planning & Strategies
Taxpayers who own cryptocurrency should pay close attention to the IRS’s recent announcement. In July, the department announced they will soon crack down on taxpayers who fail to report their virtual currency transactions. Past activity will not be ignored. In this announcement, IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig encourages taxpayers to meet their past tax obligations by amending prior returns and paying back taxes.
Last month, the IRS sent over 10,000 educational letters that explain what transactions are taxable, when taxpayers should report their transactions, and how taxpayers can remedy past reporting oversights. The IRS has a history of helping taxpayers understand the ins and outs of the tax law, so these educational letters come as no surprise. In 2014, the department released a taxpayer notice explaining how virtual currency should be reported and how it will be taxed. Last year, they unveiled a Virtual Currency Compliance campaign that deployed training resources to the public and collected taxpayer feedback. And most recently, they announced that official guidance on the taxability of cryptocurrency transactions is forthcoming. Although the IRS’s chief concern is enforcement, taxpayer education is high on their priority list.Read More
Ohio will keep the Business Income deduction (BID) at $250,000 and maintain the 3% flat rate cap in Budget bill
Topics: Tax Planning & Strategies
On July 16, the Ohio House and Senate conference committee on Am. Sub. HB 166 voted to keep the Business Income Deduction (BID) at $250,000 and to maintain the 3% flat rate cap on income above it. Legislators were convinced to avoid tying the BID exclusions to the federal 199A law regarding the Qualified Business Income Deduction.The provision was previously mentioned as an option that would have impacted a broad array of specified service trades and businesses (SSTB). The House, Senate and DeWine Administration in reaching a compromise eliminated the BID for lawyers and lobbyists – two professions which became the focal point of BID concerns by some legislators. Read More
The U.S. Senate has passed, and President Trump is expected to sign into law, a broad package of reforms aimed at the IRS. Among other things, the Taxpayer First Act contains several new protections for taxpayers, along with provisions intended to improve the IRS’s customer service.
Stronger safeguards against identity theft
Several of the bill’s provisions address tax-related identity theft. For example, the bill generally requires the IRS to notify a taxpayer as soon as practicable when it suspects or confirms an unauthorized use of the individual’s identity. The IRS also must:
• Provide the taxpayer instructions on how to file a report with law enforcement on the unauthorized use,• Identify any steps the individual should take to permit law enforcement to access his or her personal information during the investigation,
• Provide information regarding the actions the taxpayer can take to protect him- or herself from harm, and
• Offer identity protection measures, such as the use of an “identity protection personal identification number” (IP PIN).