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IRS Releases 2021 Amounts For Health Savings Accounts

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The IRS recently released the 2021 inflation-adjusted amounts for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs).

HSA basics

An HSA is a trust created or organized exclusively for the purpose of paying the “qualified medical expenses” of an “account beneficiary.” An HSA can only be established for the benefit of an “eligible individual” who is covered under a “high deductible health plan.” In addition, a participant can’t be enrolled in Medicare or have other health coverage (exceptions include dental, vision, long-term care, accident and specific disease insurance).

In general, a high deductible health plan (HDHP) is a plan that has an annual deductible that isn’t less than $1,000 for self-only coverage and $2,000 for family coverage. In addition, the sum of the annual deductible and other annual out-of-pocket expenses required to be paid under the plan for covered benefits (but not for premiums) cannot exceed $5,000 for self-only coverage, and $10,000 for family coverage.

Within specified dollar limits, an above-the-line tax deduction is allowed for an individual’s contribution to an HSA. This annual contribution limitation and the annual deductible and out-of-pocket expenses under the tax code are adjusted annually for inflation.

Inflation adjustments for 2021 contributions

In Revenue Procedure 2020-32, […]

By |May 27th, 2020|hsa, irs, New Tax Laws|0 Comments

Do You Have Tax Questions Related To COVID-19? Here Are Some Answers

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The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has affected many Americans’ finances. Here are some answers to questions you may have right now.

My employer closed the office and I’m working from home. Can I deduct any of the related expenses?

Unfortunately, no. If you’re an employee who telecommutes, there are strict rules that govern whether you can deduct home office expenses. For 2018–2025 employee home office expenses aren’t deductible. (Starting in 2026, an employee may deduct home office expenses, within limits, if the office is for the convenience of his or her employer and certain requirements are met.)

Be aware that these are the rules for employees. Business owners who work from home may qualify for home office deductions.

My son was laid off from his job and is receiving unemployment benefits. Are they taxable?

Yes. Unemployment compensation is taxable for federal tax purposes. This includes your son’s […]

California Tax Updates for April 22

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Post 1:

The California Franchise Tax Board (FTB) has posted frequently asked questions (FAQs), related to tax relief due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The list addresses topics such as: information returns, extensions to file; the postponement periods of March 12 through July 15, 2020; statutes of limitations, and more. Even more recent additions to FAQ topics are: nonresidential nonwage withholding and real estate withholding. Check the latest FAQ here: https://bit.ly/3e2q9cA or contact us with questions.

Post 2:

An extension of time has been issued for California taxpayers to accomplish certain tasks, from the CA Franchise Tax Board (FTB), due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). They include claiming a refund, filing a protest of a notice of proposed assessment (NPA) with the FTB, and filing an appeal or petition for a rehearing with the Office of Tax Appeals. The extension also gives the FTB extra […]

By |April 22nd, 2020|california, ftb, irs, New Tax Laws|0 Comments

Answers To Questions You May Have About Economic Impact Payments

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Millions of eligible Americans have already received their Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) via direct deposit or paper checks, according to the IRS. Others are still waiting. The payments are part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Here are some answers to questions you may have about EIPs.

Who’s eligible to get an EIP?

Eligible taxpayers who filed their 2018 or 2019 returns and chose direct deposit of their refunds automatically receive an Economic Impact Payment. You must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. resident alien and you can’t be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return. In general, you must also have a valid Social Security number and have adjusted gross income (AGI) under a certain threshold.

The IRS also says that automatic payments will go to people receiving Social Security retirement or disability benefits and Railroad Retirement benefits.

How much are the payments?

EIPs can be up to $1,200 for individuals, or $2,400 for married couples, plus $500 for each qualifying child.

How much income must I have to receive a payment?

You don’t need to have any income to receive a payment. But for higher income people, the payments […]

By |April 21st, 2020|irs, New Tax Laws|0 Comments

New COVID-19 Law Makes Favorable Changes To “Qualified Improvement Property”

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The law providing relief due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic contains a beneficial change in the tax rules for many improvements to interior parts of nonresidential buildings. This is referred to as qualified improvement property (QIP). You may recall that under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), any QIP placed in service after December 31, 2017 wasn’t considered to be eligible for 100% bonus depreciation. Therefore, the cost of QIP had to be deducted over a 39-year period rather than entirely in the year the QIP was placed in service. This was due to an inadvertent drafting mistake made by Congress.

But the error is now fixed. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law on March 27, 2020. It now allows most businesses to claim 100% bonus depreciation for QIP, as long as certain other requirements are met. What’s also helpful is that the correction is retroactive and it goes back to apply to any QIP placed in service after December 31, 2017. Unfortunately, improvements related […]

By |April 20th, 2020|business, irs, New Tax Laws, qualified small business|0 Comments

The History of April 15th and Tax Day

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April 15 isn’t most Americans’ favorite day, and that’s because most years, it’s the official, federal tax deadline (for the first time in 65 years, tax day now falls on a different day, July 15, 2020) . Tax Day, as it’s called, has a long and interesting history in the States that goes all the way back to Abe Lincoln’s leadership. Federal income tax was introduced with the Revenue Act of 1861 to help fund the Civil War, and subsequently repealed, re-adopted, and held unconstitutional. The early taxes were based on assessments, not voluntary tax returns. Tax payment dates varied by act.

1861: The First Federal Income Tax 

Abraham Lincoln, who was an American president from 1861 to 1865, proclaimed the first federal income tax his first year in office. 1861—particularly August 5—is the historical day that marks the future-changing decision. At the time, Lincoln announced a 3% tax rate for anyone who made over $800 a year (roughly $24,000 with today’s inflation). The decision was made to help fund the Union’s efforts during the civil war. Though we are still being taxed today, Lincoln’s tax system was repealed in 1871.

1894: Tariff Act of 1894 Rules […]

By |April 15th, 2020|irs, Linkenheimer, New Tax Laws, tax deadlines|0 Comments

COVID-19: IRS Announces More Relief And Details

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In the midst of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Americans are focusing on their health and financial well-being. To help with the impact facing many people, the government has provided a range of relief. Here are some new announcements made by the IRS.

More deadlines extended

As you probably know, the IRS postponed the due dates for certain federal income tax payments — but not all of them. New guidance now expands on the filing and payment relief for individuals, estates, corporations and others.

Under IRS Notice 2020-23, nearly all tax payments and filings that would otherwise be due between April 1 and July 15, 2020, are now postponed to July 15, 2020. Most importantly, this would include any fiscal year tax returns due between those dates and any estimated tax payments due between those dates, such as the June 15 estimated tax payment deadline for individual taxpayers.

Economic Impact Payments for nonfilers

You have also likely heard about the cash payments the federal government is making to individuals under certain income thresholds. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act will provide an eligible individual with a cash payment equal to the sum of: $1,200 […]

By |April 14th, 2020|irs, New Tax Laws, relief, tax deadlines|0 Comments

Relief From Not Making Employment Tax Deposits Due To COVID-19 Tax Credits

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The IRS has issued guidance providing relief from failure to make employment tax deposits for employers that are entitled to the refundable tax credits provided under two laws passed in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The two laws are the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which was signed on March 18, 2020, and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) Act, which was signed on March 27, 2020.

Employment tax penalty basics

The tax code imposes a penalty for any failure to deposit amounts as required on the date prescribed, unless such failure is due to reasonable cause rather than willful neglect.

An employer’s failure to deposit certain federal employment taxes, including deposits of withheld income taxes and taxes under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) is generally subject to a penalty.

COVID-19 relief credits

Employers paying qualified sick leave wages and qualified family leave wages required by the Families First Act, as well as qualified health plan expenses allocable to qualified leave wages, are eligible for refundable tax credits under the Families First Act.

Specifically, provisions of the Families First Act provide a refundable tax credit against an employer’s share of the Social […]

IRS Extends More Tax Deadlines To Cover Individuals, Trusts, Estates Corporations and Others

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To help taxpayers, the Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service announced today that Notice 2020-23 extends additional key tax deadlines for individuals and businesses.

Last month, the IRS announced that taxpayers generally have until July 15, 2020, to file and pay federal income taxes originally due on April 15. No late-filing penalty, late-payment penalty or interest will be due.

Today’s notice expands this relief to additional returns, tax payments and other actions. As a result, the extensions generally now apply to all taxpayers that have a filing or payment deadline falling on or after April 1, 2020, and before July 15, 2020. Individuals, trusts, estates, corporations and other non-corporate tax filers qualify for the extra time. This means that anyone, including Americans who live and work abroad, can now wait until July 15 to file their 2019 federal income tax return and pay any tax due.

Extension of time to file beyond July 15

Individual taxpayers who need additional time to file beyond the July 15 deadline can request an extension to Oct. 15, 2020, by filing Form 4868 through their tax professional, tax software or using the Free File link on IRS.gov. […]

By |April 9th, 2020|business, filing deadline, irs, tax deadlines|0 Comments

IRS Issues Warning About Coronavirus-Related Scams

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The IRS warned taxpayers to watch out for emails, text messages, websites, and social media attempts related to the coronavirus that request money or personal information. Taxpayers should not click on links from emails that appear to come from the IRS. The IRS and its Criminal Investigation Division have seen a wave of new and evolving phishing schemes against taxpayers. In most cases, the IRS will deposit economic impact payments into the direct deposit account taxpayers previously provided on tax returns. Taxpayers who have previously filed but not provided direct deposit information to the IRS will be able to provide their banking information through a newly designed secure portal on www.irs.gov in mid-April. If the IRS does not have a taxpayer’s direct deposit information, a check will be mailed to the address on file. No one from the IRS will be reaching out to taxpayers by phone, email, mail, or in person asking for information to complete economic impact payments. If you have questions or concerns, please reach out to your Linkenheimer CPA.

By |April 6th, 2020|irs|0 Comments