Tax news

Tax

Companies do Pay Substantial Taxes, Even on Inflated Earnings

Just because a company inflates its earnings by a couple hundred million doesn’t mean it won’t pay the taxes on those bogus earnings.
Practice Management

Grassley Urges Caution When Using Paid Tax Preparers

Disturbed by what he heard at a hearing on taxpayer issues, Senator Charles Grassley, Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, has issued a statement urging taxpayers to exercise caution when hiring a paid tax preparer.Sen. Grassley’s caution comes after hearing from the General Accounting Office who estimated that over half of US taxpayers who overpay their taxes had employed the services of a paid tax preparer.
Tax

Where to File Your Return

Once you complete your 2002 federal tax return, you can either file it electronically or mail it to the IRS. If you choose to mail your return, be sure to read your tax instruction booklet carefully to find the address of the IRS center for your area.For this year, the IRS has changed some of its filing locations.
Tax

Deadline Nears For Offshore Tax Evaders

April 15 is the last chance for people who have used offshore payment cards or other offshore financial arrangements to avoid U.S. taxes to take advantage of the Offshore Voluntary Compliance Initiative (OVCI).Eligible taxpayers who step forward will receive the initiative’s penalty relief.
Tax

Intuit Expands Free Tax-Filing Program to States

Arizona is jumping on the free tax-filing bandwagon. Last Friday Gov. Janet Napolitano announced that the state had formed a public-private partnership with Intuit, Inc., which will allow qualified Arizona taxpayers to prepare and pay their state taxes electronically at no charge.Arizona’s program is similar to the Free File Program, a partnership between the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and 17 software makers. Intuit, which is also part of the federal software alliance, will be donating its TurboTax software for Arizona’s program.
Tax

Top Ten Craziest Sales Tax Laws

In true Late Show fashion, here are the "Top Ten Craziest Sales Tax Laws" (courtesy of Taxware)In Minnesota, non-edible cake decorations are taxable, but edible cake decorations are exempt.In California, chewing gum is considered candy, or a "nonfood" product, and taxed at between 7.25 - 8.75%.
Tax

How to Prepare Your Tax Returns For Mailing

Although electronic filing is becoming more and more the filing method of choice for taxpayers, there are still many who file paper returns. If you are one, the IRS recommends that you take a few minutes to make certain that all information is complete and accurate before sealing that envelope. This simple precaution could help you avoid mistakes that may delay your refund or result in correspondence with the IRS.Here are just a few items to complete prior to mailing your tax return:Sign your return. Your federal tax return is not considered a valid return unless it is signed.
Tax

Gambling Income

Hit a big one in 2002? With more and more gambling establishments, the IRS reminds people that they must report all gambling winnings as income on their tax return.Gambling income includes, but is not limited to, winnings from lotteries, raffles, horse and dog races and casinos, as well as the fair market value of prizes such as cars, houses, trips or other noncash prizes.Generally, if you receive $600 or more in gambling winnings, the payer is required to issue you a Form W-2G.
Tax

ProSystem fx Adds Credit Card Tax Payment Option

CCH Tax Compliance has announced a new partnership agreement with Official Payments Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tier Technologies (Nasdaq: TIER), which will allow the clients of its affiliates and professional customers to conveniently pay any taxes owed to a state or the federal government via credit card.
Tax

Foreign Income

With more and more United States citizens earning money from foreign sources, the IRS reminds people that they must report all such income on their tax return, unless it is exempt under federal law. U.S. citizens are taxed on their worldwide income. This applies whether a person lives inside or outside the United States.
Tax

Free File Program Proves Popular With Taxpayers

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced that as of last week more than two million taxpayers have used Free File, a program offered by the IRS and private companies. Free File allows taxpayers to prepare and file their taxes online for free. The Free File Alliance is a public-private alliance that includes 17 tax preparation software companies. Member companies include TurboTax, TaxACT.com, FreeTaxUSA.com, H&R Block, Tax Brain, and eSmartTax.com.
Tax

H&R Block Accused of Misuse of Consumer Data

H&R Block's marketing efforts are again stirring controversy as several consumer groups alert the Treasury Department this week of alleged privacy violations by H&R Block of data collected from taxpayers using the IRS' Free File program.The group claims that H&R Block is improperly marketing its mortgage services to consumers who enter mortgage interest information in the Block Web site which they have entered through the IRS Free File program.
Tax

Ten Ways to Avoid Problems at Tax Time

Looking for ways to avoid the last-minute rush for doing your taxes? The IRS offers these tips:Organize Your Tax Records. Tax preparation time can be significantly reduced if you develop a system for organizing your records and receipts. Start with the income, deduction or tax credit items that were on last year’s return. Don’t Procrastinate. Resist the temptation to put off your taxes until the last minute.
Tax

Bicyclists Riding Toward Tax Break

Gas costs are high, pollution fills our air, and tax breaks are available for those who drive to work. Bicyclist enthusiasts, including some Congressmen in Washington, think the time is right to extend those tax breaks to bicycling commuters. Representatives Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Mark Foley (R-FL) have reintroduced the Bike Commuter Act, H.R.
Technology

California E-Tax Filing System Irks Software Makers

Until this tax season, taxpayers in California who wanted to file electronically had to use tax-preparation software for a fee ranging from $5 to $30. But now, Californians can use a state-supported system that allows them to send in their taxes for free and private companies aren’t happy about it. Software companies, such as Intuit and H&R Block, insist that the new system infringes on their territory and that the government is trying to replace private industry.
Tax

Intuit Stock Takes a Nose Dive

Shares of stock in Intuit Inc., known for its TurboTax, Quicken, and QuickBooks programs, dropped nearly 24% in trading on Friday after the company released news that it would not meet its 2003 growth targets due to unexpected weaker sales of software during tax season.Prudential Securities analyst Bryan Keane noted that Intuit's sales may be down due to the fact that many computer-using taxpayers have been diverted to the IRS's new FreeFile program that offers free online tax filing services to qualifying taxpayers.
Tax

Options For Paying Your Taxes

If you do not pay your taxes when due, you may have to pay a failure-to-pay penalty. To avoid this penalty, the IRS suggests several ways to pay your taxes.
Tax

Deductible Taxes

Did you know that you may be able to deduct certain taxes on your federal income tax return? The IRS says you can if you file Form 1040 and itemize deductions on Schedule A. There are three types of deductible non-business taxes:State, local and foreign income taxes; Real estate taxes; and Personal property taxes. You can deduct any estimated taxes paid to state or local governments and any prior year's state or local income tax as long as they were paid during the tax year.
Tax

Early Distributions From Retirement Plans

An early distribution from an Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA) or a qualified retirement plan need not be a “taxing” experience, according to the IRS.Any payment that you receive from your IRA or qualified retirement plan before you reach age 59½ is normally called an “early” or “premature” distribution. As such, these funds are subject to an additional 10 percent tax. But there are a number of exceptions to the age 59½ rule that you should investigate if you make such a withdrawal.
Tax

IRS Audits on The Rise

A new report analyzing the performance of the Internal Revenue Service when it comes to auditing taxpayers and collecting unpaid taxes shows the agency is improving and streamlining its audit and collection process.For fiscal year 2002 the IRS increased its audits of taxpayers earning more $100,000 by 22%.

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