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In the Zone: Tax Zone
December 22, 2009    
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Editor's Note
As we wind down the year, we want to remind all of you paper-tax-return-lovers out there that spring of 2010 is the last year for paper returns, so enjoy. As it turns out, the new law that was designed to extend unemployment benefits contains several changes to the tax laws too, including the let's-go-green e-file rule for everyone who prepares more than 10 tax returns per year.

In the celebrity gossip department, it seems that Fergie,, and the rest of the Black-Eyed Peas crew have gotten themselves into some hot water with the IRS. The group just announced its 2010 tour dates, so let's hope those peas don't get cooked.

As always, we welcome comments and suggestions posted at the bottom of our articles or by e-mail if you prefer.

Best wishes,
Gail Perry, CPA
Managing Editor
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Tax return preparers must e-file for 2010 tax returns
Tax return preparers will have to pay attention to an amendment added in the Senate version of the Worker, Homeownership, and Business Assistance Act of 2009, which extended the First Time Homeowner Credit and unemployment benefits, because beginning in 2010, this amendment will require tax return preparers to file any individual tax return electronically unless the preparer expects to file fewer than 10 returns in a calendar year.
Will high unemployment mean less need for tax preparation this tax season?
The saying goes that there is nothing certain but death and taxes. That sounds like job security for tax preparers and morticians, but in the coming tax season, morticians may find themselves burning the midnight oil alone on some nights. The highest unemployment in decades means more people will not have to file at all or will have returns simple enough to do without assistance.
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IRS issues proposed regulations on new basis reporting requirement
The Internal Revenue Service has issued proposed regulations under a new law that will require reporting of basis and other information by stock brokers and mutual fund companies for most stock purchased in 2011 and all stock purchased in 2012 and later years. The reporting will be to investors and the IRS. This additional reporting will be optional for stock purchased prior to these dates.
Black Eyed Peas in hot water for ten years of unfiled tax returns
There's a war of words between two people representing the Hip Hop group, Black Eyed Peas. The group's manager, Sean Larkin, seems to have missed a minor detail... for the last ten years or so, he has neglected to file income tax returns on the group's income of $10 million.
Intuit renews free tax advice promotion
Just as it did last year, Intuit is offering a free answer to a single question posed regarding U.S. federal forms 1040, 1065, 1120, and 1120S. Taxpayers can visit Intuit's free tax question Web site between now and January 31, 2010 to pose their question.
Last minute tips for 2009 year-end tax planning
2009 has been a difficult year with the current economic downturn. Although there are signs of recovery, it is assumed by many that full recovery is still some years away. In spite of that, areas of the current Tax Code can help ease the impact of the current economic downturn for taxpayers. The following tried and true tax planning techniques, with some new twists, along with new opportunities and tax law changes, can help almost every taxpayer.
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