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The Supreme Court has reversed and remanded California v. Texas, holding that the Plaintiffs do not have standing to challenge the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) minimum essential coverage provision.


The IRS issued two new, separate sets of frequently-asked-questions (FAQs) to assist families and small and mid-sized employers) in claiming credits under the American Rescue Plan (ARP). These FAQs provide information on eligibility, computing the credit amounts and how to claim these important tax benefits. Enacted in March to assist families and small businesses with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery underway, the ARP enhanced the child and dependent care credit and the paid sick and family leave credit.


The IRS has started sending letters to over 36 million families who, based on tax returns filed, may be eligible to receive monthly child tax credit payments starting July. Eligibility of these families are being evaluated based on information provided by taxpayers in their 2019 or 2020 tax returns, or through the Non-Filers tool while registering for an Economic Impact Payment. In addition, taxpayers who are eligible for advance child tax credit payments will receive a second, personalized letter listing an estimate of their monthly payment, starting July 15.


The IRS has finalized regulations relating to the mandatory 60-day postponement of certain time-sensitive tax-related deadlines by reason of a federally declared disaster. Further, the regulations clarify the definition of "federally declared disaster." The regulations affect individuals who reside in or were killed or injured in a disaster area, businesses that have a principal place of business in a disaster area, relief workers who provide assistance in a disaster area, or any taxpayer whose tax records necessary to meet a tax deadline are located in a disaster area.


The IRS has released a revenue procedure explaining how a taxpayer changes its method of computing depreciation for certain residential rental property. Automatic consent procedures for changing accounting method are available for taxpayers adopting the depreciation method changes.


An eligible partnership may file amended partnership returns for tax years beginning in 2018, 2019, and 2020 by filing a Form 1065, U.S. Return of Partnership Income (Form 1065), with the "Amended Return" box checked. The partnership may also issue an amended Schedule K-1, Partner’s Share of Income, Deductions, Credits, etc. (Schedule K-1), to each of its partners.


An estate was allowed a marital deduction because the decedent’s marriage was valid in the country of celebration. The decedent, who was Jewish, obtained a religious divorce under rabbinical law in New York from his first wife after a New York court had declared his Mexican divorce invalid, which resulted in the declaration that his marriage to a second wife was null and void. The decedent traveled to Israel and married his third wife in an Orthodox Jewish ceremony. The Israeli marriage certificate noted that the decedent was free to marry because he was divorced. The government claimed that because the divorce was not valid under state law, no marital deduction was allowed because the property did not pass to the decedent’s surviving spouse.


The Treasury Department and the IRS have announced that they intend to amend the base erosion and anti-abuse tax (BEAT) regulations under Code Sec. 59A and Code Sec. 6038A to defer the information reporting requirements for qualified derivative payments (QDPs) until tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2023. The current regulations provide that the QDP reporting requirements apply to tax years beginning on or after June 7, 2021.


Tax reform discussions continue on Capitol Hill with legislation expected to be released very soon. GOP lawmakers in the House and Senate appear to be aiming for a comprehensive overhaul of the Tax Code. President Trump and Republicans in Congress have set out an ambitious schedule of passing a tax reform bill before year-end. 


Holiday gifts made to customers are generally deductible as ordinary and necessary business expenses as long as the taxpayer can demonstrate that such gifts maintain or improve customer goodwill. Such gifts must bear a direct relationship to the taxpayer's business and must be made with a reasonable expectation of a financial return commensurate with the amount of the gift. However, the $25 annual limitation per recipient on deductibility is applicable to holiday gifts, unless a statutory exceptions applies.


For purposes of federal tax, employers must withhold and pay FICA taxes (7.65%) if they paid a household employee cash wages of at least $2,000 in 2016 or in 2017 ($2,100 in 2018). Employers must pay FUTA tax (6%) if they paid total cash wages of at least $1,000 in a calendar quarter to household employees. A homeowner may be an “employer” to a housekeeper; or, if enough evidence is shown, merely a recipient of services by an independent contractor or self-employed individual.


Tax writers in Congress are set to begin debating and writing tax reform legislation. On September 27, the White House and GOP leaders in Congress released a framework for tax reform. The framework sets out broad principles for tax reform, leaving the details to the two tax-writing committees: the House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee. How quickly lawmakers will write and pass tax legislation is unclear. What is clear is that tax reform is definitely one of the top issues on Congress’ Fall agenda.