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Taxpayers with children may qualify for certain tax benefits. Parents should consider child-related tax benefits when filing their federal tax return: Dependent. Most of the time, taxpayers can claim their child as a dependent. Use the Interactive Tax Assistant to help determine who can be claimed as a dependent. Taxpayers can generally deduct $4,050 for each qualified dependent. If the taxpayer’s income is above a certain limit, this amount may be reduced. For more on these rules, see Publication 501 , Exemptions, Standard Deduction and Filing Information. Child Tax Credit. Generally, taxpayers can claim the Child Tax Credit for each...
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Phyllis Kubey, EA, CFP, ATA, ATP, a member of the National Society of Accountants (NSA) who has more than 30 years of experience as a tax professional, has been appointed as a member of the Internal Revenue Service Advisory Council (IRSAC). IRSAC is an advisory body designed to focus on broad policy matters and reviews existing tax policy and/or recommends policies with respect to emerging tax administration issues. IRSAC advises the IRS Commissioner with respect to issues having a substantive effect on federal tax administration, including operational improvements and current or proposed IRS policies, programs, and procedures. Ms. Kubey will serve as...
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As of Sunday Feb. 5, certain e-Services users who have not verified their identities with the IRS have had their accounts suspended. The IRS mailed letters 5903 between Dec. 1 and Dec. 16 to those users who had been active on their accounts in the past year and who had access to the Transcript Delivery System. Users were given 30 days to verify their identities as part of our effort to better secure the e-Services program and protect taxpayer data. The IRS has updated the www.irs.gov/eservices landing page and the Important Update about Your e-Services Account to provide users with guidance about how to reinstate their accounts if they did not do so...
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The Internal Revenue Service, state tax agencies and the tax industry issued an urgent alert today to all employers that the Form W-2 email phishing scam has evolved beyond the corporate world and is spreading to other sectors, including school districts, tribal organizations and nonprofits. In a related development, the W-2 scammers are coupling their efforts to steal employee W-2 information with an older scheme on wire transfers that is victimizing some organizations twice. “This is one of the most dangerous email phishing scams we’ve seen in a long time. It can result in the large-scale theft of sensitive data that criminals can use to...
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The Earned Income Tax Credit has helped workers with low and moderate incomes get a tax break for 40 plus years. Yet, one out of every five eligible workers fails to claim it. Here are some things taxpayers should know about the EITC: Review Your Eligibility. Taxpayers who worked and earned under $53,505 may qualify for EITC. Filers should review EITC eligibility rules if their household income or family situation has changed. They may qualify for EITC this year, even if they did not in the past. To qualify, a taxpayer must file a federal income tax return claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit. This is true even if a taxpayer is not otherwise required...
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Kathy Hettick, EA, ABA, ATP, who served as the 2015-16 President of the National Society of Accountants (NSA), has been appointed as a member of the Internal Revenue Service Advisory Council (IRSAC). Hettick is principal of Hettick Accounting & Tax, LLC, in Enumclaw, Washington. IRSAC is an advisory body designed to focus on broad policy matters and reviews existing tax policy and/or recommends policies with respect to emerging tax administration issues. IRSAC advises the IRS Commissioner with respect to issues having a substantive effect on federal tax administration, including operational improvements and current or proposed IRS policies, programs,...
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The National Society of Accountants (NSA) is offering an intensive NSA Enrolled Agent (EA) Exam Review Course & Accredited Tax Preparer (ATP) Review Course/Exam August 20-22, 2017, at the Nugget Casino Resort in Reno, NV, immediately before the NSA Annual Convention and Expo at that same location. Designed to give tax professionals the best opportunity to pass the EA exam on the first try, the 3-day course provides in-depth review of all the key components of the exam. Enrolled Agents are authorized to represent taxpayers before the IRS and tax professionals who hold the EA credential can command higher fees. They must pass a three-part IRS exam...
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In compliance with Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) laws, the IRS makes available a list of PTIN holders and a list of enrolled agents to interested parties. The lists are currently provided via CD-ROM to those who submit a request and pay a $35 fee to cover IRS costs. This process will soon change as a result of the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 signed by the President on June 30, which requires agencies to " make available for public inspection in electronic format...copies of all records...that have been requested 3 or more times ." The PTIN list has been requested more than 1,200 times, well over the limit. The IRS is working to implement...
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A biennial survey conducted by the National Society of Accountants (NSA) reported detailed data about business practices, client fees, and spending for tax and accounting professionals. The 2016-17 NSA Income and Fees of Accountants and Tax Preparers in Public Practice Survey Report offers useful benchmarks for firms to use in billing, fee increases, engagement practices and other operations. Business Mix and Revenue Surveyed firms reported that on average 57.3% of gross income comes from tax-return preparation, 15.4% from write-up work, 8.9% from payroll services, 7.0% from tax services, 3.6% from QuickBooks/bookkeeping, 2.6% from financial statement...
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The National Society of Accountants (NSA) reported the latest average tax preparation fees this as part of its biennial survey of tax professionals. The average fee for a professional to prepare and submit a Form 1040 and state return with no itemized deductions is $176, the average fee for an itemized Form 1040 with Schedule A and a state tax return is $273, and the average fee for an itemized Form 1040 with Schedule C and a state tax return is $457. “Tax returns are getting more complicated every year, and with so many hidden tax deductions and constantly changing tax laws, using a professional to prepare your taxes can pay off,” says NSA...
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The Internal Revenue Service, state tax agencies and the tax industry today renewed their warning about an e-mail scam that uses a corporate officer’s name to request employee Forms W-2 from company payroll or human resources departments. This week, the IRS already has received new notifications that the e-mail scam is making its way across the nation for a second time. The IRS urges company payroll officials to double check any executive-level or unusual requests for lists of Forms W-2 or Social Security number. The W-2 scam first appeared last year. Cybercriminals tricked payroll and human resource officials into disclosing employee names, SSNs...
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The National Society of Accountants (NSA) Scholarship Foundation is accepting scholarship applications from qualified accounting students across the country. The Foundation awards scholarships to undergraduates who are U.S. or Canadian citizens majoring in accounting at an accredited two- or four-year college or university in the United States. Since it was formed in 1969, the NSA Scholarship Foundation has awarded over $1 million to dedicated students pursuing a career in the accounting profession. “Filling accounting positions with promising students is the most important thing we can do to advance this critical profession,” says NSA Scholarship...
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Mark Your Calendar The 2017 IRS Nationwide Tax Forums are coming to a city near you. Join your colleagues and IRS representatives for three days of education, training, and networking. This is a great opportunity to: Earn valuable CE/CFP Credits Learn about the latest tax laws and regulations directly from the IRS Learn about a wide variety of tax products and services in our exhibit hall Network... Network... Network... For questions contact info@irstaxforum.com . For exhibiting and sponsorship opportunities contact expo@irstaxforum.com . 2017 Dates Orlando, FL July 11-13 Dallas,...
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NSA is warning all tax professionals and taxpayers of a new E-mail scam posing as National Taxpayer Advocate. The subject line for the fraudulent email is “URGENT NOTICE: IMPORTANT STEPS AND PROCEDUTES FOR NEW TAX SEASON” and uses an IRS logo at the bottom. The message purports to be from National Taxpayer Advocate, Nina E. Olson using two email addresses Nina.Olson@irs.gov and spolman@g.sebeka.k12.mn.us . The scam e-mail advices Certified Public Accountants of new guidelines and rules for the upcoming 2017 tax season, claiming that there is a compulsory new act for all CPA’s. A PDF file titled “New Season Shared Docx.pdf”...
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As the tax filing season approaches, the Internal Revenue Service reminds low- and moderate-income workers that they can take steps now to save for retirement and earn a special tax credit in 2016 and years ahead. The saver’s credit helps offset part of the first $2,000 workers voluntarily contribute to IRAs and 401(k) plans and similar workplace retirement programs. Also known as the retirement savings contributions credit, the saver’s credit is available in addition to any other tax savings that apply. Eligible workers still have time to make qualifying retirement contributions and get the saver’s credit on their 2016 tax returns....
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As tax filing season approaches, the Internal Revenue Service is reminding taxpayers there are things they should do now to get ready for filing season. For most taxpayers, Dec. 31 is the last day to take actions that will impact their 2016 tax returns. For example, charitable contributions are deductible in the year made. Donations charged to a credit card before the end of 2016 count for the 2016 tax year, even if the bill isn’t paid until 2017. Checks to a charity count for 2016 as long as they are mailed by the last day of the year. Taxpayers who are over age 70 ½ are generally required to receive payments from their individual retirement...
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Tax return preparers should beware of various ruses and schemes used by cybercriminals. These scams allow criminals to gain access to passwords or computer systems which allows them to steal taxpayer data. Many schemes are currently making the rounds. Protect your clients and yourself from these ongoing and increasingly sophisticated efforts to steal data. How serious is this threat? Here are a few examples of criminal scams and schemes intent on stealing your information from just the past few months: In April and August of 2016, the IRS sent emergency alerts to tax professionals about criminals using remote access technology to gain control of...
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The Internal Revenue Service announced today that the nation’s tax season will begin Monday, Jan. 23, 2017 and reminded taxpayers claiming certain tax credits to expect a longer wait for refunds. The IRS will begin accepting electronic tax returns that day, with more than 153 million individual tax returns expected to be filed in 2017. The IRS again expects more than four out of five tax returns will be prepared electronically using tax return preparation software. Many software companies and tax professionals will be accepting tax returns before Jan. 23 and then will submit the returns when IRS systems open. The IRS will begin processing paper...
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The Internal Revenue Service and Security Summit partners urged taxpayers to take immediate steps to protect their personal data to strengthen expanded efforts being taken this upcoming tax season by federal, state and tax industry leaders against identity theft and refund fraud. The Security Summit, an unprecedented collaborative effort between the IRS, the states and the nation's tax industry, announced in November plans to improve identity theft and refund fraud protections for individual and business taxpayers for the 2017 filing season. “The collective efforts of the IRS, the states and the tax industry have provided new and important protections...
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As tax season approaches, the Internal Revenue Service, the states and the tax industry reminded taxpayers to be on the lookout for an array of evolving tax scams related to identity theft and refund fraud. Every tax season, there is an increase in schemes that target innocent taxpayers by email, by phone and on-line. The IRS and Security Summit partners remind taxpayers and tax professionals to be on the lookout for these deceptive schemes. “Whether it's during the holidays or the approach of tax season, scam artists look for ways to use tax agencies and the tax industry to trick and confuse people,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen....
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