Tax Tips

IRS Warns Taxpayers to Guard Against New Tricks by Scam Artists; Losses Top $20 Million

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Following the emergence of new variations of widespread tax scams, the Internal Revenue Service today issued another warning to taxpayers to remain on high alert and protect themselves against the ever-evolving array of deceitful tactics scammers use to trick people. These schemes – which can occur over the phone, in e-mails or through letters with authentic looking letterhead – try to trick taxpayers into providing personal financial information or scare people into making a false tax payment that ends up with the criminal.

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What You Need to Know About Small Business Healthcare Tax Credit

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If you are a small employer, you might be eligible for the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit, which can make a difference for your business.   To be eligible for the credit, you must: have purchased coverage through the Small Business Health Options Program – also known as the SHOP marketplace have fewer than 25 full-time equivalent employees pay an average wage of less than $50,000 a year pay at least half of employee health insurance premiums

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IRS, Industry, States Take New Steps Together to Fight Identity Theft, Protect Taxpayers

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The Internal Revenue Service joined today with representatives of tax preparation and software firms, payroll and tax financial product processors and state tax administrators to announce a sweeping new collaborative effort to combat identity theft refund fraud and protect the nation’s taxpayers. The agreement — reached after the project was originally announced March 19 — includes identifying new steps to validate taxpayer and tax return information at the time of filing. The effort will increase information sharing between industry and governments. There will be standardized sharing of suspected identity fraud information and analytics from the tax industry to identify fraud schemes and locate indicators of fraud patterns. And there will be continued collaborative efforts going forward.

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Proposed Regulations Offer Guidelines for New State-Sponsored ABLE Accounts for People with Disabilities

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The Internal Revenue Service today released proposed regulations implementing a new federal law authorizing states to offer specially-designed tax-favored ABLE accounts to people with disabilities who became disabled before age 26. The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) account provision was signed into law in December 2014. Recognizing the special financial burdens faced by families raising children with disabilities, ABLE accounts are designed to enable people with disabilities and their families to save for and pay for disability-related expenses. The new law authorizes any state to offer its residents the option of setting up an ABLE account. Alternatively, a state may contract with another state that offers such accounts. The account owner and designated beneficiary of the account is the disabled individual. In general, a designated beneficiary can have only one ABLE account at a time, and must have been disabled before his or her 26th birthday. The law provides what it means to be disabled for this purpose. Contributions in a total amount up to the annual gift tax exclusion amount, currently $14,000, can be made to an ABLE account on an annual basis, and distributions are tax-free if used to pay qualified disability expenses. These are expenses that …

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