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Tax

Publication 17 - One Stop for Tax Help

Facing a lot of different tax questions this year? IRS experts have pulled together an overview of common tax issues in one convenient place - Publication 17, "Your Federal Income Tax." This updated publication contains a vast array of helpful information in one guide.From stock sales to student loans, this 280-page publication holds the answers to many of your questions, such as: Need help deciphering the mysteries of the Roth IRA? Try Chapter 18 for retirement accounts. Do you have a new child in the house?
Tax

Free Tax Publications Available

From aardvark to zyzzyva, the IRS has a publication that covers it - free for the asking. The IRS has numerous publications on a variety of tax-related topics available by phone, fax, or the Internet at www.irs.gov .Are you a student seeking knowledge on the lifetime learning credit? Check out Publication 970. Are you a first-time home buyer?
Tax

Point and Click for a Trouble-Free Tax Season

Need a tax form? Have a question about changes to tax law? Want to find the nearest IRS taxpayer assistance center? Now anyone with a personal computer and Internet access can point and click their way to trouble-free tax filing at www.irs.gov.The IRS Web site offers a wealth of resources for making tax time, well, a little less taxing. A user-friendly format allows even novice Web surfers to quickly find the information they need.
Tax

IRS 'Misplaces' Over 2300 Computers

It's tough when the organization that holds taxpayers strictly accountable for their businesses "can't find" over 2,300 computers in its inventory of over 163,000.The Associated Press has reported that a Treasury Department audit late last year has uncovered the fact that the computers were either lost, stolen or lost "due to bookkeeping errors" over the past three years.In response to the audit, the IRS indicated that they are locating the computers, and are "reasonably sure" that there is no sensitive or private information stored on those machines."An agency that requires taxpayers
Tax

Record Keeping

You can avoid headaches at tax time by keeping track of your receipts and other records throughout the year, the IRS advises. Good record keeping will help you remember the various transactions you made during the year, which may help you out on your taxes.Records help you document the deductions you've claimed on your return. You'll need this documentation should the IRS select your return for examination.
Tax

IRS Issues Final Regulations for Income Averaging

The IRS has issued final regulations relating to the income averaging method of computing income tax that is available for farmers.The final regulations address the issue of equitable treatment for shareholders of S corporations who receive farm income. In addition, the regulations also address the issue of rental income from a farming business.Specifically, the new regulations, set out in T.D.
Tax

Should I Itemize?

Whether to itemize deductions on your tax return depends on how much you spent on certain expenses last year. According to the IRS, money paid for medical care, mortgage interest, taxes, contributions, casualty losses, and miscellaneous deductions can reduce your taxes. If the total amount spent on those categories is more than the standard deduction, you can usually benefit by itemizing.The standard deduction amounts are based on your filing status and are subject to inflation adjustments each year.
Tax

Which Form - 1040, 1040A or 1040EZ?

If you are filing a federal income tax return on paper, use the simplest form you can, the IRS advises. The simpler the form, the less chance of an error that may cost you money or delay the processing of your return. The simplest is Form 1040EZ. Form 1040A covers several additional items not addressed by the EZ. Form 1040 should be used when itemizing deductions and reporting more complex investments and other income.
Tax

Nader to Microsoft: 'Dividends Are Due'

In a letter to Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates on Friday, long time consumer advocate Ralph Nader has requested that Microsoft change its policies and start paying dividends to its shareholders.Nader called called Microsoft's "failure to pay dividends year after year" an "inappropriate and we believe unlawful device" to shield Microsoft's profits from taxes."It's a tax-avoidance scheme for the big shareholders," Mr. Nader said in an interview. "This thing is out of control.
Tax

Guidance Issued to Assist Drafters of IRAs, SEPs

The IRS has provided (1) guidance to drafters of individual retirement arrangements (IRAs), simplified employee pensions (SEPs) and SIMPLE IRA plans; (2) guidance to users of IRS model IRAs and plans; and (3) transitional relief for users of IRAs and plans that have not received IRS approval. The guidelines, which take effect on January 28, 2002, modify section 4.01 of Rev. Proc. 87-50, 1987-2 CB 647.Opinion LettersThe Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 (EGTRRA) (P.L.
Tax

IRS Tax Forms Delayed

Tax return preparers who are waiting for the 2001 versions of IRS tax forms, will have to wait a bit longer, the IRS has announced.Volume 2 of Package X, Reference Copies of Federal Tax Forms and Instructions, and Volume 2 of Publication 1132, Reproducible Tax Forms and Instructions, were scheduled to start shipping on December 31 and complete shipping by January 11.
Tax

What is Your Filing Status?

Your filing status on your federal ax return is a category that identifies you based on your marital and family situation, according to the IRS. It is an important factor in determining whether you must file a return, the amount of your standard deduction and your correct amount of tax. If more than one filing status applies to you, you may choose the one that gives you the lowest tax obligation.There are five possible filing statuses: Single, Married Filing Jointly, Married Filing Separately, Head of Household and Qualifying Widow(er) with Dependent Child.
Tax

IRS 2002: New Features, New Services, New Credits

As the 2002 filing season begins, the IRS has announced the availability of new and expanded services, features, and credits. It pointed out that, during the first week of 2002, more than 40 million tax packages and 23 million computer-filing brochures will start to reach taxpayers. The Service expects to receive approximately 132 million individual returns this year.In light of a new study that shows high customer satisfaction with respect to the IRS's e-filing program, taxpayers and tax practitioners are once again being urged to e-file tax returns.
Tax

Who Must File a Tax Return

There are some instances when you may not be required to file a federal income tax return. But keep this in mind - more than 70 percent of those who file are due a refund, so it may be to your advantage to file even if you are not required to. The law does require you to file a tax return if your income is above a certain level. Check the instructions for Form 1040, 1040A or 1040EZ (under "filing requirements") for specific details that may affect your need to file a tax return with IRS this year.Here are some general guidelines for anyone under age 65.
Tax

IRS Announces New Applicable Federal Rates

The IRS has announced new applicable federal rates (AFRs) for federal income tax purposes for January 2002. These rates are revised monthly and published in IRS Revenue Rulings. Links below go to all related Revenue Rulings for the past year.
Tax

GAO Report Says IRS Phone Service Still Lacking

In response to a request from the House Ways & Means Committee, the Government Accounting Office (GAO) performed an assessment of the performance and management of the IRS telephone answering service with regard to providing help with tax laws and taxpayer account information.Objectives of the assessment were to compare the IRS performance during the 2001 tax filing season with similar performance during the 2000 tax filing season, and to assess the IRS's efforts to identify factors which determine such performance and the agency's response in evaluating and improving such factors.The IR
Tax

Maximizing Tax Season 2002

This article was written by Roman Kepczyk, founder of InfoTech Partners North America.The 2002 tax season is around the corner, so it is important that you focus on fine-tuning processes and procedures to ensure that this is the smoothest tax season ever. Below are some opportunities for creating a more efficient busy season.1-Digital document storage: Put procedures in place to immediately begin storing a PDF copy of every final tax return in your client directory whenever you print out the final copy of the return for the client and the IRS.
Tax

Avoid Headaches: Prepare Taxes Early

Earlier is better when it comes to working on your taxes. The IRS encourages everyone to get a head start on tax preparation. Not only do you avoid the last-minute rush, early filers also get a faster refund.There are seven easy ways to get a good jump on your taxes long before the April 15 deadline rolls around: Gather your records in advance. Make sure you have all the records you need, including W-2s and 1099s. Don't forget to save a copy for your files.Get the right forms.
Tax

IRS Plans E-File Advertising Program

The Internal Revenue Service is looking for a communications and marketing agency that will team with the tax agency to help encourage the public to file tax returns electronically.The IRS is asking that proposals from interested companies be filed by February 8, 2002. The advertising contract is a five-year project and is estimated to be worth $80 to $100 million.
Community News

Andersen Leads Pack as Global Tax Consultant

Glob@l Finance magazine has announced that Big Five firm Andersen has been selected as the best global tax consultant for the year 2001. The ranking represents the first annual consultants' ranking by the magazine. The ranking will appear in the magazine's January 2001 issue.Criteria used for the decision included revenues, market share, and growth.

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