Tax news March 2006

Tax

Fight Looming in Michigan Over Single Business Tax; Dayton’s Earnings Tax Up for Renewal

Officials and voters will be deciding state and local tax policies in Michigan and Ohio in coming weeks. Michigan lawmakers took the first step toward repeal of the state’s 30-year old Single Business Tax (SBT) last week when a House committee voted to repeal the tax, although it is not due to expire until 2009.
Technology

Mark Your Calendar: IAASB Consultative Advisory Group Meeting

Paris in the springtime is a popular place to be. The Consultative Advisory Group (CAG) of the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) is offering a great excuse to visit Paris on May 11 and 12, by opening their meetings to the public.Opening the CAG meetings to the public provides organizations, other than the CAG member organizations, and the general public, an opportunity to observe the discussion and follow the various points of view put forward.
Tax

Three Firms Selected to Take Part in IRS Delinquent Tax Collection Effort

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), last week awarded contracts to three firms, the CBE Group Inc. of Waterloo, Iowa, Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson, LLP of Austin, Texas, and Pioneer Credit Recovery, Inc. of Arcade, New York, from a field of 33 firms, in the first phase of its private debt collection initiative.“The vast majority of states use private firms to help collect delinquent taxes. The new authority Congress gave to the federal government allows us to use private firms as well,” IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson said in a prepared statement.
Practice Management

Taxprep Integrates with CCH Practice, Linking Client, Project, and Time & Billing Information

Taxprep, CCH’s flagship personal tax, corporate tax, and trust return preparation software in Canada, is now integrated with CCH Practice, the practice management component of the CCH Accountants’ Suite. This integration, announced last week, provides users with workflow and time and billing efficiencies that improve productivity, accuracy and profitability.Advertis
Tax

Perspectives Into Tax Reform at the State Level

It's easy to think of tax reform at the federal level. The American tax system is notoriously complex. There is more to America than the federal government, however. There are states and local governments as well.
Tax

Effects of KPMG’s Deferred Prosecution Agreement May Be Felt for Years

The most prominent case in recent years, involving the much strengthened Internal Revenue Service’s enforcement division working with the Justice Department, has been the investigation of KPMG by a New York grand jury for promoting tax shelter abuses. The investigation concluded with the decision by the Justice Department not to pursue a criminal indictment of the firm, but to enter into a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) in which KPMG admitted to substantial wrongdoing and agreed to pay penalties and implement reforms and higher standards.
Tax

Learned Inefficiency: Box-Cutters vs. Bad Numbers

These days, it seems like everyone is in trouble. Just pick up a paper or turn on the news and you can hear about accounting firms getting fined for violating independence rules and federal agents breaching airport security with alarming regularity.
Tax

Experts Say High Price Deters Would-be Smokers

Americans bought as many cigarettes last year as they did in 1951, when the population was half what it is today.A new report by the National Association of Attorneys General said that the nation's per capita consumption of tobacco fell to levels last found in the 1930s.Advertisement
Technology

TurboTax Wants to Help Taxpayers Spend Their Refunds

Intuit’s TurboTax has added a new incentive for taxpayers to purchase their tax return preparation software, the chance to participate in the TurboTax refund bonus program.
Tax

E-Filing A Hit with Taxpayers From Individuals to Large Corporations

E-filing is a hit across the board. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reports that more than 39.5 million individual taxpayers, representing 73 percent of the total returns filed, had e-filed by early March. More than 450 of the nation’s largest corporation have electronically filled taxes in advance of the March 15 filing date, as well.
Tax

Debit Card Fraud Jumps

Thieves are finding new ways to steal from us. In stealing account information, they have made an end run around the PIN code system and started producing counterfeit ATM cards to steal money directly from related accounts.
Practice Management

Whistleblowers or Lamplighters?

Snitch! Tattletale! Squealer!
Technology

Mark Your Calendar: SEC Enforcement Chief Leads Internet Fraud Discussion

The focus of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Historical Society’s inaugural “Fireside Chat” for 2006 is online fraud and the use of the Internet to perpetrate insider trading, market manipulations, and other securities violations. The free, one-hour, program will be broadcast live and online between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m.
Tax

Tax Cheats Beware: Compliance Support at All-Time High

The 2005 IRS Oversight Board Taxpayer Attitude Survey, released in late February, revealed that 88 percent, or nearly nine out of ten Americans, feel that it is “not at all” acceptable to cheat on your income taxes. This is the highest level of support since the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Oversight Board began tracking attitudes towards tax cheating in 1999.
Tax

Businesses Encouraged to Submit Tax Issues for Resolution Program

Business taxpayers and associations may seek resolution of problematic tax issues through the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) Industry Issue Resolution (IIR) Program. The objective of the IIR program is to resolve business tax issues common to significant numbers of taxpayers, through new guidance.
Tax

Firms Respond to Competitive Tax Services Environment

Gaining new clients in the increasingly competitive tax preparation services business has meant a change in business strategy for many CPA firms and pressure for companies like H&R Block and Jackson Hewitt. Jackson Hewitt has expanded in H&R Block’s market, which has traditionally served lower and middle income taxpayers in community store fronts, the San Francisco Business Times reports.
Tax

Accountants Play Starring Role at Sunday's Academy Awards

Two people who play a big part in Sunday's Oscars ceremony already know they're going to feel out of place. “We're accountants," said Oscar-vote handler Rick Rosas. "We're the most anonymous people sitting in the Green Room. We're the most nondescript. We're clearly the two who don't fit in. And we're the only two who have a security detail."Rosas and fellow PriceWaterhouseCoopers partner Brad Oltmanns have the enviable job of counting Oscar ballots, ensuring the accuracy of the numbers, and knowing long before anyone else who the big winners are.
Tax

Enron Accountant Admits to Raiding Reserves to Boost Earnings

An Enron accountant testified in court Monday that he plundered reserve funds to inflate earnings and make look Enron look more successful than it was.Advertisement
Tax

Many Low Income Workers Don’t Claim Earned Income Tax Credit

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) estimates that four out of five taxpayers who meet eligibility requirements don’t claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), the government’s largest program for helping low-income working families, the Washington Post reports. Last year 21.1 million taxpayers claimed a total of nearly $40 billion through the EITC credit, enacted by Congress in 1975 as a way to help low-income workers.

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