The Berman Hopkins tax team has analyzed the new tax law and we are ready to take full advantage of the new provisions. We have pulled together 10 key analytic points that we feel are important for business owners to know.
The Berman Hopkins team received this valuable information from RIA Checkpoint newsletter and we wanted to share it with our clients.
Acting IRS Commissioner: Congress’ failure to act on fiscal cliff could delay filing season
December 7, 2012: Taxpayers may face a significantly delayed filing season and a much larger tax bill for 2012 if Congress fails to timely resolve fiscal cliff issues, Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller said on December 6.
Speaking at the 25th Annual Institute on Current Issues in International Tax sponsored by IRS and the George Washington University School of Law in Washington, Miller said that “I remain optimistic that the fiscal cliff will be resolved by the end of this calendar fiscal year [but] if that turns out not to be true, then what is clear is that many of us will see a delayed filing season.”
Miller said that the uncertainty as to what the tax law will be in 2012 creates a risk for the entire tax system, including a strain on IRS, tax practitioners, and ultimately, taxpayers.
“There is currently a real discussion about the tax rates for the next year and beyond as well as the national debt and that is an incredibly important discussion,” he said. “But taxpayers and the IRS need to know what the tax provisions are for 2012 so you know what you owe and so we know how to process the return beginning in January.”
He noted that the alternative minimum tax (AMT) and other extender provisions had expired at the end of 2011, but that these had been overshadowed by other higher profile fiscal cliff issues. Miller said that in programming its systems, IRS has assumed that Congress will patch the AMT as it has for so many years in the past. However, he warned that if Congress fails to resolve fiscal cliff issues prior to the end of the year and the IRS’s assumptions are incorrect, the filing season will be delayed for many taxpayers.
Former UBS AG banker Bradley Birkenfeld helped the U.S. government uncover an international tax evasion scheme and was awarded $104 million. It is believed that this is the largest whistle-blower payout given to an individual.
Laura Saunders from the Wall Street Journal wrote, “… Birkenfeld, 47 years old, began cooperating with U.S. authorities in 2007, while still at UBS. He provided prosecutors with detailed descriptions of the bank’s efforts to promote tax evasion and confessed to running errands for rich clients, including one instance when he sneaked diamonds into the U.S. in a toothpaste tube.”
UBS turned over the names of 4,000 account holders and paid $780 million to resolve the criminal case. In addition 33,000 U.S. taxpayers have confessed to having undeclared overseas accounts and paid more than $5 billion in taxes and penalties. Even Birkenfeld plead guilty to one account of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and is serving out his 40 month sentence in home confinement.
This shows the new lengths the U.S. government is welling to go to collect unpaid taxes.
Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller stated on December 6th, “Taxpayers may face a significantly delayed filing season and a much larger tax bill for 2012 if Congress fails to timely resolve fiscal cliff issues.”
If you are a concerned business owner who wants some clarification on the pending tax changes then join our panel of tax experts on Tuesday January 15th to determine what changes will affect your business.
During Jim LaHam’s interview with Florida Today they took a short video of LaHam speaking about his book. To see the video visit FloridaToday.com or click here.
Copies of True G.R.I.T have been mailed to the national media and key politicians; such as Steve Forbes, Matt Lauer, Lawrence O’Donnell, Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney.
LaHam states that this is a bipartisan solution and he hopes that his book will reach key decision makers and make a difference.
Tax Partner Jim LaHam has put his 40 years of tax experience to good use and written a book that reforms the tax system in America and simplifies the Internal Revenue Code. His book is titled True G.R.I.T. which stands for A “True Graduated Rational Income Tax” System.
Wayne Price from Florida Today interviewed LaHam and discussed his plans for the book. To read the article click here.
If you would like to read True G.R.I.T. you can find it on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords.
Berman Hopkins sponsored last weeks Titusville Chamber Luncheon at the La Cita Country Club on Wednesday August 8th.
Laura Anne Pray, CPA and A&A Manager gave a great talk about hurricane financial preparation and year-end business planning/preparation. She created two check lists for businesses to use:
To see pictures from the event please click here.
The Chicago Tribune wrote an article about House Republican Aaron Schock of Illinois and his bill to give Olympic medalists a tax break.
The article explains that U.S. athletes win performance bonuses when they capture Olympic medals. Athletes receive $25,000 for a gold medal, $15,000 for a silver and $10,000 for a bronze. There is also a value placed on the medals themselves which is also taxable.
Schock introduced a bill on August 1, 2012 to amend the tax code for Olympic medals and bonuses. There is lots of controversy over this bill and adding another exemption to the tax code.
To read the full article from the Chicago Tribune click here.