Byrnes' Tax & Wealth Management Blog

William Byrnes graduate law programs blog

United Capital Expands $2B Through Hiring

Posted by williambyrnes on February 27, 2015


read about United Capital’s hiring strategy, reported on by Investment News Service – on the International Financial Law Prof Blog

 

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Byrnes and Perryman’s Analysis of the FATCA GIIN Lists June 2014 – February 2015 | Kluwer International Tax Blog

Posted by williambyrnes on February 25, 2015


Byrnes and Perryman’s Analysis of the FATCA GIIN Lists June 2014 – February 2015 | Kluwer International Tax Blog.

Since the publication of the U.S. Treasury’s original GIIN list 1 June 2014, HaydonPerryman (FATCA systems designer for several tier 1 financial institutions) and I (primary author, Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance) have been analyzing on a monthly basis the list that the USA provides of “approved FFIs” (foreign financial institutions). On 1 February, the IRS published its second 2015 FATCA GIIN list of “approved FFIs” (a list of the financial firms that have registered on the IRS FATCA portal). Global FFI Registration has reached 153,797.

  • But from what countries are these registrations?
  • Are these DCFFI registrations or PFFIs?
  • Which countries are leading in the registration compliance and which are lagging?
  • Has FFI registration growth by country and region been measured over the past eight months?

Wolters Kluwer has published our complete analysis on the International Tax Law blog.

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IRS Checklist of Credits and Deductions for Children

Posted by williambyrnes on February 25, 2015


In Tax Tip 2015-14, the IRS discussed the potential reduction of the amount of taxes owed for a year that tax credits and deductions associated with children may provide to the parents.

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• Dependents.  In most cases, a taxpayer can claim a child as a dependent.  For each dependent, the taxpayer may deduct $3,950 from taxable income.  However, for high income taxpayers, the amount of allowed deduction decreases.

• Child Tax Credit.  A taxpayer may be able to claim the Child Tax Credit for each of the qualifying children under the age of 17. The maximum credit is $1,000 per child.  However, if a taxpayer receives less than the full amount of the Child Tax Credit, then the taxpayer may be eligible for the “Additional Child Tax Credit”.

• Child and Dependent Care Credit. A taxpayer may be able to claim this credit if the taxpayer paid for the care of one or more qualifying persons. Dependent children under age 13 are among those who qualify.  The care must be paid for so that the taxpayer could work or could look for work.

• Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).  If in 2014 a taxpayer earned less than $52,427 from work, the taxpayer may qualify for the EITC.  The EITC may be worth as much as $6,143.  The EITC is available regardless of whether the taxpayer has children.

• Adoption Credit.  A taxpayer may be eligible to claim a tax credit for certain costs paid for adoption of a child.

• Education tax credits.  An education credit can help a taxpayer with the cost of higher education.  There are two credits that are available. The American Opportunity Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit may both reduce the amount of tax owed.

If the credit reduces the tax owed to less than zero, the taxpayer may receive a refund of the extra amount.  Even if the taxpayer does not owe any taxes for the year, the taxpayer may still qualify.

• Student loan interest.  A taxpayer may be able to deduct interest paid on a qualified student loan.  This benefit is available even for taxpayers that do not itemize tax deductions.

• Self-employed health insurance deduction.  If a taxpayer was self-employed in 2014 and paid for health insurance, then the taxpayer may be able to deduct premiums paid during the year. This may include the cost to cover children under age 27, even if they are not claimed as a dependent!

Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business

2014_tf_on_individuals_small_businesses-m_1Due to a number of recent changes in the law, taxpayers are currently facing many questions connected to important issues such as healthcare, home office use, capital gains, investments, and whether an individual is considered an employee or a contractor.  Financial advisors are continually looking for competitive information to help them provide the best answers for their clients and to obtain new clients.  National Underwriter’s Tax Facts series is the only resource written specifically for the financial advisor and producer providing fast, clear, and authoritative answers to pressing questions, and it does so in the convenient, timesaving, Q&A format for which Tax Facts has been famous over 50 years.

Anyone interested can try Tax Facts Online risk-free for 30 days, with a 100% guarantee of complete satisfaction.  Call 1-800-543-0874.

Posted in Taxation | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Are My Tips Taxable?

Posted by williambyrnes on February 23, 2015


9dc30-6a00d8341bfae553ef01bb07b43355970d-piThe IRS disclosed certain tax tips in a recent publication (2015-13) that may help a taxpayer file and report “tip” income correctly.

• Show all tips on the 1040 tax return.  All tips received during a calendar year must be added up and included on the federal tax return.  This even includes the value of tips that are not in cash.  Examples of non-cash tips include items such as tickets, passes or other items when provided by a customer for work or service.

• All tips are taxable.  Tips paid directly by a customer and tips added by a customer to a credit card are both to be included in taxable income. As well, tips received under a tip-splitting agreement with other employees, such as in a restaurant, are to be included.

• Report tips to the employer.  If an employee receives $20 or more in tips in any one month, the employee must report the tips for that month to the employer.  Tips reported to the employer include cash, check and credit card tips but does not include the value of any noncash tips.  The employer must withhold federal income, Social Security and Medicare taxes on these reported tips.

Daily tip log.  Use the IRS’ Publication 1244, Employee’s Daily Record of Tips and Report to Employer, to record your tips.

Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business

2014_tf_on_individuals_small_businesses-m_1Due to a number of recent changes in the law, taxpayers are currently facing many questions connected to important issues such as healthcare, home office use, capital gains, investments, and whether an individual is considered an employee or a contractor.  Financial advisors are continually looking for competitive information to help them provide the best answers for their clients and to obtain new clients.  National Underwriter’s Tax Facts series is the only resource written specifically for the financial advisor and producer providing fast, clear, and authoritative answers to pressing questions, and it does so in the convenient, timesaving, Q&A format for which Tax Facts has been famous over 50 years.

Anyone interested can try Tax Facts Online risk-free for 30 days, with a 100% guarantee of complete satisfaction.  Call 1-800-543-0874.

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Working Group for Distance Learning in Legal Education Spring 2015 Meeting Hosted by Hastings

Posted by williambyrnes on February 17, 2015


Download BestPracticeRecommendationsforDistanceLearningforLegalEducation 2015 (or contact williambyrnes@gmail.com)

Dates: Thursday, March 12, 2015 at 12:00PM – Saturday, March 14, 2015 at 12:00PM (PST) < Register Here >

Location: UC Hastings College of the Law (Sky Room – 100 McAllister Street, San Francisco, CA, 94102)

The Working Group for Distance Learning in Legal Education is a loosely structured alliance of law educators collaborating to provide increased opportunities for faculty, students, and other participants to access high quality, innovative, and interactive online legal education.

Officially organized in November 2011, the Working Group is an outgrowth of the Program for the Legal Profession’s Future Ed Series. To date, the Working Group has focused on three major priorities:

  1. Providing model policies and information for law schools engaged in distance learning programs.
  2. Developing recommended practices and standards for emerging distance learning programs in legal education.
  3. Providing comments and policy recommendations for accreditation bodies that regulate distance learning in legal education, including the American Bar Association.

Members of the Working Group meet three times a year, with substantive meetings in the fall and spring, and an update gathering at the American Association of Law Schools annual meeting in January. Membership is open to academics and professionals associated with accredited law schools in the U.S., and others working in the distance learning field concerned with legal education are welcome to attend meetings and participate, as appropriate, in Working Group matters.

Please contact Ashley Dymond for further information at dymonda@uchastings.edu or < Register Here >

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TJSL Hosted Moscow State University Professors and Students | Thomas Jefferson School of Law

Posted by williambyrnes on February 13, 2015


TJSL Hosted Moscow State University Professors and Students | Thomas Jefferson School of Law.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Longevity Pegged Annuities – What’s Changed With The Final Regulations

Posted by williambyrnes on February 12, 2015


Nysscpa-site-logo

 

Longevity Pegged Annuities - What CPAs Need to Know About the New Rules (William Byrnes & Robert Bloink)

The Treasury Department made sparks fly when it recently issued final regulations governing qualified longevity annuity contracts (QLAC).

read the full story at CPA Journal of the New York Society of Certified Public Accountants http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/8df8c3b9#/8df8c3b9/66

Posted in Financial, Retirement Planning | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Two Powerhouses Announce Joint International Tax LLM

Posted by williambyrnes on January 27, 2015


Logo Starting September 2015, University of Amsterdam will offer an Advanced LL.M. of International Taxation in English, limited to just 25 annual candidates from around the world.  Applications for one of these seats are open until April.

Renown international tax academic and lawyer Dr. Dennis Weber shared with the Financial Law Prof: “The Advanced LL.M. of International Tax Lawis a full-time, one-year program.  The curriculum covers both the established framework of international tax law and emerging issues. A fundamental premise is that a proper understanding of this area of the law requires studying both the “big picture” and the technicalities.”

Weber-dennis-hoogleraar-fdr-fotograaf-gerth-van-roden-web“Moreover”, he continued, “the OECD BEPS project is on every tax counsel’s mind, and such discussions normally involve The Netherlands because, as a business friendly jurisdiction for fifty years, it has attracted multinational operations, employment and tax revenue using a ‘carrot’ policy.  Other countries are competing for multinationals’ operations, employment and tax revenue with a ‘stick’ policy of imposing high compliance costs to dissuade international activities.  The next five years will be an interesting time as the G20 goes head to head to try to peel away these operations and tax revenue from each other.”

“The IBFD is very excited about joining forces with the University of Amsterdam to create an LLM with a teaching programme that is based firmly on the research activities of both institutions and offers a combined theoretical and practical analysis of international tax law.” elaborated Prof. Dr Pasquale Pistone, Chair of the IBFD’s Academic Committee.

“There has never been a more exciting time to study international tax law than now” continued Dr. Joanna Wheeler, “the topic is firmly on the public agenda and you can see the whole field developing before your eyes just by reading the news.”

“I am delighted that the longstanding relationship between the UvA and IBFD has resulted in such a promising LLM programme, a programme that takes a holistic and policy-oriented view to taxation and that perfectly fits the current era.” said Prof. Dr Stef van Weeghel.  Dr. Weber added, “Studying international tax law in one of the most relaxed cities in the world: a perfect combination.”

Prof. William Byrnes iterated “Dr. Dennis Weber has developed a game changer in Europe with his international tax program, combining the academic quality of University of Amsterdam with the industry reputation of the IBFD.”

Learn more about international students studying in Amsterdam via YouTube

 

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IRS Provides Obamacare Relief With Removal of Tax Penalties for Advanced Premium Tax Credit Payment

Posted by williambyrnes on January 27, 2015


Notice 2015-09 provides limited relief for taxpayers who have a balance due on their 2014 income tax return as a result of reconciling advance payments of the premium tax credit against the premium tax credit allowed on the tax return.

9dc30-6a00d8341bfae553ef01bb07b43355970d-piThis Notice provides limited relief for taxpayers who have a balance due on their 2014 income tax return as a result of reconciling advance payments of the premium tax credit against the premium tax credit allowed on the tax return. Specifically, this Notice provides relief from the penalty under § 6651(a)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code for late payment of a balance due and the penalty under § 6654(a) for underpayment of estimated tax. To qualify for the relief, taxpayers must meet certain requirements.  This relief applies only for the 2014 taxable year.

This relief does not apply to any underpayment of the individual shared responsibility payment resulting from the application of § 5000A because such underpayments are not subject to either the § 6651(a)(2) penalty or the §6654(a) penalty.

A taxpayer may receive assistance in paying premiums for coverage in a qualified health plan through advance payments of the premium tax credit. Advance credit payments are made directly to the insurance provider. The amount of the advance credit payments is determined when an individual enrolls in a qualified health plan through an Exchange and is based on projected household income and family size for the year of coverage. A taxpayer claims the premium tax credit on the income tax return for the taxable year of coverage. The amount of the credit is based on actual household income an family size for the year reflected on the tax return. Under § 36B(f)(2) and § 1.36B- 4(a)(1)(i) of the Income Tax Regulations, a taxpayer must reconcile, or compare, the amount of premium tax credit allowed on the tax return with advance credit payments.

Changes in the circumstances on which the advance credit payments are based could result in a difference between the amount of advance credit payments and the premium tax credit to which the taxpayer is entitled. If advance credit payments are more than the premium tax credit allowed on the return, the difference (excess advance payments) is treated as additional tax and may result in either a smaller refund or a larger balance due (or, if the premium tax credit allowed is more than the advance credit payments made, the excess credit amount may result in a larger refund or lower balance due).

Taxable year 2014 is the first year for which taxpayers will be required to reconcile advance credit payments with the premium tax credit.

The Service will abate the § 6651(a)(2) penalty for taxable year 2014 for taxpayers who (i) are otherwise current with their filing and payment obligations; (ii) have a balance due for the 2014 taxable year due to excess advance payments of the premium tax credit; and (iii) report the amount of excess advance credit payments on their 2014 tax return timely filed, including extensions (Line 46 of Form 1040 or Line 29 of Form 1040A).

Further, the Service will waive the § 6654 penalty for taxable year 2014 for an underpayment of estimated tax for taxpayers who have an underpayment attributable to excess advance credit payments if the taxpayers (i) are otherwise current with their filing and payment obligations; and (ii) report the amount of the excess advance credit payments on a 2014 tax return timely filed, including extensions.

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FINRA Changes Regulatory Priorities – Pushing “Best Interest of Client” in 2015 Over “Suitability Standard”

Posted by williambyrnes on January 26, 2015


read about it on International Financial Law Prof Blog

Posted in Compliance | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

What’s WIth the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program’s “Non-Willful” Narratives?

Posted by williambyrnes on January 26, 2015


International Financial Law Prof Blog

the IRS’s 2015 versions of the two streamlined procedures OVDP forms (Form 14653 and Form 14654) require taxpayers to “provide a “narrative statement of facts” explaining their failure to disclose their offshore assets, or the agency …. read about it on International Financial Law Prof Blog

 

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Is Insider Trading Still a Crime after U.S. v Newman?

Posted by williambyrnes on January 26, 2015


read about it at International Financial Law Prof Blog and download the case.

Citing U.S. v. Newman, judge throws out insider trading guilty pleas over IBM deal, more insider trading cases expected to be dropped ….

 

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Premium Tax Credit Brings Changes to Your 2014 Income Tax Returns

Posted by williambyrnes on January 26, 2015


When filing your 2014 federal income tax return, you will see some 457c5-6a00d8341bfae553ef01b7c7029b32970b-pichanges related to the Affordable Care Act. Millions of people who purchased their coverage through a health insurance Marketplace are eligible for premium assistance through the new premium tax credit, which individuals chose to either have paid upfront to their insurers to lower their monthly premiums, or receive when they file their taxes. When you bought your insurance, if you chose to have advance payments of the premium tax credit, the Marketplace estimated the amount based on information you provided about your expected household income and family size for the year.

If you received the benefit of advance credit payments, you must file a federal tax return and reconcile the advance credit payments with the actual premium tax credit you are eligible to claim on your return.  You will use IRS Form 8962Premium Tax Credit (PTC) to make this comparison and to claim the credit. If your advance credit payments are in excess of the amount of the premium tax credit you are eligible for, based on your actual income, you must repay some or all of the excess when you file your return, subject to certain caps.

If you purchased your coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace, you should receive Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement from your Marketplace. You should receive this form by early February.

Form 1095-A will provide the information you need to file your taxes, including the name of your insurance company, dates of coverage, amount of monthly insurance premiums for the plan you and other members of your family enrolled in, amount of any advance payments of the premium tax credit for the year, and other information needed need to compute the premium tax credit.

Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business

2014_tf_on_individuals_small_businesses-m_1Due to a number of recent changes in the law, taxpayers are currently facing many questions connected to important issues such as healthcare, home office use, capital gains, investments, and whether an individual is considered an employee or a contractor.  Financial advisors are continually looking for competitive information to help them provide the best answers for their clients and to obtain new clients.  National Underwriter’s Tax Facts series is the only resource written specifically for the financial advisor and producer providing fast, clear, and authoritative answers to pressing questions, and it does so in the convenient, timesaving, Q&A format for which Tax Facts is famous.

Anyone interested can try Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business, risk-free for 30 days, with a 100% guarantee of complete satisfaction.  Call 1-800-543-0874.

Posted in Taxation | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

The FDIC Wants to Sell You a Failing Bank – Interested?

Posted by williambyrnes on January 20, 2015


The FDIC has opened an online market place to dispose of failing banks — read about it at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

The ability to bid applies to FDIC-insured financial institutions of any size that may be interested in acquiring a failing institution from the FDIC.

Posted in Compliance, Wealth Management | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Welcome this week from University of Amsterdam Centre for Tax Law

Posted by williambyrnes on January 19, 2015


Logo_uva1 Welcome from Amsterdam !  Each year the Amsterdam Centre for Tax Law (of the University of Amsterdam Law Faculty) organizes its Winter Course on International Tax Law.

This year theme is “Tax treaty application“.  The Winter Course on International Tax Law focuses on the practical problems of tax treaty application. It aims at bringing the participants’ knowledge up-to-date with recent OECD developments, major issues on tax treaty interpretation, as well as relevant case-law on tax treaties around the world.

Prof. Dennis Weber, Director of the ACTL,  has assembled a leading program faculty including Prof. Peter Watel(UvA) (who lectured me at a UvA tax student 23 year ago); Prof. Hein Vermeulen (UvA/PwC);  Prof. Stef van Weeghel (UvA/PwC); Prof. Bruno De Silva (UvA); Prof. Otto Marres (UvA/KPMG); Prof. Joanna Wheeler(IBFD/UvA); Jasper Arendse (Directorate of International Affairs Dutch Ministry of Finance); Melinda Brown (OECD); and myself, Prof. William Byrnes.

My topic examines the protocols, mechanisms and expanding scope of information exchange via bilateral and multilateral agreements.  FATCA, OECD CRS and Global Initiatives, EU Expanded Savings Directive EOI, TIEAs fall within this topic, as well as tax certification forms and validation, data collection, discernment and distribution.

The Amsterdam Centre for Tax Law (ACTL) is the tax law research centre of the University of Amsterdam. ACTL members conduct research into various subjects of tax law, with a strong emphasis on Corporate Taxation, International Tax Law and European Tax Law.

Posted in Courses, FATCA, information exchange, international taxation | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Federal Government After Decades Tries To Stop Local Authorities From Profiting on Asset Seizure Abuse Justified by Federal Law (But What About State Abuse)?

Posted by williambyrnes on January 19, 2015


Read the Notice sent to State Enforcement today, and links of previous coverage of this issue – at http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/intfinlaw/2015/01/federal-government-after-decades-tries-to-stop-local-authorities-from-profiting-on-asset-seizure-abu.html

 

01701_11_1_coverUse your Lexis subscription to access LexisNexis’ Money Laundering, Asset Forfeiture and Recovery and Compliance: A Global Guide – This treatise by William Byrnes with commentary and analysis of hundreds of AML experts from over 100 countries,  is designed to provide the compliance officer accurate analyses of the AML/CTF Financial and Legal Intelligence, law and practice in the nations of the world with the most current references and resources. This multi-volume treatise is organized around five main themes: 1. Money Laundering Risk and Compliance; 2. The Law of Anti-Money Laundering and Compliance; 3. Criminal and Civil Forfeiture; 4. Compliance and 5. International Cooperation.  As these unlawful activities can occur in any given country, it is important to identify the international participants who are cooperating to develop methods to obstruct these criminal activities.

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Luxembourg’s Amazon Deal is State Aid Because of Lack of Diligence, EU Commission Preliminary Conclusion

Posted by williambyrnes on January 16, 2015


EU Commission Will Calculate State Aid via a Transfer Pricing Audit of the Difference of the Ruling from an Arm’s Length Benchmark – See today’s decision links and analysis in article)

decision and analysis with links available at  http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/intfinlaw/2015/01/luxembourgs-amazon-deal-is-state-aid-because-of-lack-of-diligence-eu-commission-preliminary-conclusi.html

(78) While tax rulings that merely contain an interpretation of the relevant tax provisions without deviating from administrative practice do not give rise to a presumption of a selective advantage, rulings that deviate from that practice have the effect of lowering the tax burden of the undertakings concerned as compared to undertakings in a similar legal and factual situation. To the extent the Luxembourgish authorities have deviated from the arm’s length principle as regards the contested tax ruling, the measure should also be considered selective.

(79) Since the contested tax ruling fulfils all four conditions under Article 107(1) TFEU, the Commission takes the view, at this stage, that it constitutes State aid within the meaning of that provision.

 

practical_guide_book

Lexis’ Practical Guide to U.S. Transfer Pricing (2015), 28 chapters from 50 expert contributors (3,000 pages) led by international tax Professor William Byrnes,  is designed to help multinationals cope with the U.S. transfer pricing rules and procedures, taking into account the international norms established by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). It is also designed for use by tax administrators, both those belonging to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service and those belonging to the tax administrations of other countries, and tax professionals in and out of government, corporate executives, and their non-tax advisors, both American and foreign.

Posted in international taxation, Transfer Pricing | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Tax Season: Ready, Set, Go !

Posted by williambyrnes on January 16, 2015


IRS Starts 2015 Tax Season; Free File Opens Today, 

IRS YouTube Videos:

9dc30-6a00d8341bfae553ef01bb07b43355970d-piThe nation’s 2015 tax filing season begins today and a growing array of online services is available to assist taxpayers.  Understanding the Affordable Care Act and how this impacts a taxpayer will be a popular feature this year.

Taxpayers have until Wednesday, April 15, 2015 to file their 2014 tax returns and pay any tax due. The IRS expects to receive about 150 million individual income tax returns this year. Like each of the past three years, more than four out of five returns are expected to be filed electronically.

The IRS Free File program, available at IRS.gov, will open Friday for taxpayers, and the IRS will begin accepting and processing all tax returns on Tuesday, Jan. 20.

This year’s return will include new questions to incorporate provisions of the Affordable Care Act (or ACA). The majority of taxpayers – more than three out of four – will simply need to check a box to verify they have health insurance coverage. For the minority of taxpayers who will have to do more, www.IRS.gov/aca features useful information and tips regarding the premium tax credit, the individual shared responsibility requirement and other tax features of the ACA.

“Our employees will be working hard again this season to help the nation’s taxpayers,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said. “We encourage people to use the tools and information available on IRS.gov, particularly given the long wait times we anticipate on our phone lines. As always, taxpayers can benefit by filing electronically.”

Koskinen announced that taxpayers can begin preparing their returns using the Free File system on Friday, Jan. 16. Available only at IRS.gov, Free File offers two filing options:

• Brand-name software, offered by IRS’ commercial partners to about 100 million individuals and families with incomes of $60,000 or less; or

• Online fillable forms, the electronic version of IRS paper forms available to taxpayers at all income levels and especially useful to people comfortable with filling out their own returns.

E-file, when combined with direct deposit, is the fastest way to get a refund. More than three out of four refund recipients now choose direct deposit. People who e-file make fewer mistakes, and it costs nothing for those who choose Free File.  In all, 14 software companies will be participating in this year’s Free File program.

Taxpayers who purchase their own software can also choose e-file, and most paid tax preparers are now required to file their clients’ returns electronically. In addition to Free File, commercial software companies also are currently available for taxpayer use.

The IRS will begin accepting and processing all returns – whether e-file, Free File or paper tax returns — on Jan. 20.

Like last year, the IRS expects to issue more than nine out of 10 refunds within 21 days. Again, the fastest way to get a refund is to e-file and choose direct deposit. It takes longer to process paper returns, it will likely take an additional week or more to process paper returns meaning that those refunds are expected to be issued in seven weeks or more.

Health Care Basics

The Affordable Care Act requires that a taxpayer and each member of their family either has qualifying health insurance coverage for each month of the year, qualifies for an exemption , or makes an individual shared responsibility payment when filing their federal income tax return.  Some moderate-income taxpayers may also qualify for financial assistance to help cover the cost of health insurance purchased through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Taxpayers will fall into one or more of the following categories:

• Check the box. Most taxpayers will simply check a box on their tax return to indicate that each member of their family had qualifying health coverage for the whole year. No further action is required.

Qualifying health insurance coverage includes coverage under most, but not all, types of health care coverage plans. Taxpayers can use the chart on IRS.gov/aca to find out if their insurance counts as qualifying coverage.

• Exemptions. Taxpayers may be eligible to claim an exemption from the requirement to have coverage.  Eligible taxpayers need to complete the new IRS Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions, and attach it to their tax return.  Taxpayers must apply for some exemptions through the Health Insurance Marketplace. However, most of the exemptions are easily obtained from the IRS when filing a return.

• Individual Shared Responsibility Payment. Taxpayers who do not have qualifying coverage or an exemption for each month of the year will need to make an individual shared responsibility payment with their return for choosing not to purchase coverage. Examples and information about figuring the payment are available on the IRS Calculating the Payment page.

• Premium Tax Credit.  Taxpayers who bought coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace should receive Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement, from the Marketplace by early February. This form should be saved because it has important information needed to complete a tax return.

If the Form 1095-A is not received by early February, contact the Marketplace where coverage was purchased. Do not contact the IRS because IRS telephone assistors will not have access to this information.

Taxpayers who benefited from advance payments of the premium tax credit must file a federal income tax return. These taxpayers need to reconcile those advance payments with the amount of premium tax credit they’re entitled to based on their actual income. As a result, some people may see a smaller or larger tax refund or tax liability than they were expecting.  Use IRS Form 8962, Premium Tax Credit (PTC), to calculate the premium tax credit and reconcile the credit with any advance payments.

The IRS also reminded taxpayers that a trusted tax professional can also provide helpful information about the health care law. A number of tips about selecting a preparer and national tax professional groups is available on IRS.gov.

The IRS urges all taxpayers, especially those claiming the premium tax credit, to make sure they have all their year-end statements in hand before they file their return. This includes Forms W-2 from employers, Forms 1099 from banks and other payers, and, for those claiming the premium tax credit, and Form 1095-A from the Marketplace. Doing so will help avoid refund delays and the need to file an amended return later.

Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business

2014_tf_on_individuals_small_businesses-m_1Due to a number of recent changes in the law, taxpayers are currently facing many questions connected to important issues such as healthcare, home office use, capital gains, investments, and whether an individual is considered an employee or a contractor.  Financial advisors are continually looking for competitive information to help them provide the best answers for their clients and to obtain new clients.  National Underwriter’s Tax Facts series is the only resource written specifically for the financial advisor and producer providing fast, clear, and authoritative answers to pressing questions, and it does so in the convenient, timesaving, Q&A format for which Tax Facts is famous.

Anyone interested can try Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business, risk-free for 30 days, with a 100% guarantee of complete satisfaction.  For more information, please call 1-800-543-0874.

Posted in Taxation, Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

The Ghost of Meyer Lansky? Cuba is Back in Business ! But Still Illegal To Have Fun… Analysis of OFAC’s Regulations Released Today

Posted by williambyrnes on January 15, 2015


“Don’t worry, don’t worry. Look at the Astors and the Vanderbilts, all those big society people. They were the worst thieves – and now look at them. It’s just a matter of time.” Meyer Lansky

International Financial Law Prof Blog post … Academics, conference attendees, and business persons may travel to Cuba under blanket authorization to attend conferences, teaching programs, and transact business.

However, the US Treasury Department has left it illegal under the OFAC regulations to undertake tourist activities, including “excessive” free time sitting about puffing cigars and sipping rum.  At least a professor can bring one small box of cigars back home now (not over $100 value). And smart phones will work in the future!  read my analysis of the OFAC Cuba Amendments Released Today – read the full analysis at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Compliance, Financial Crimes | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

OFAC Focuses on Banks Detecting Persons & Entities on the International Black List With New Global Format

Posted by williambyrnes on January 15, 2015


This new sanctions list format was jointly developed by the United Nations (U.N.) and the Wolfsberg Group of International Banks in an effort to create a universal sanctions list format that can be efficiently used by governments worldwide and enhances sanctions compliance.  The United States is the first U.N. member state to implement this advanced sanctions data model.  In an effort to ensure a greater level of global sanctions compliance the Treasury Department supports the new sanctions list model and appreciates the efforts of the U.N. and the Wolfsberg Group in their creation of a universal format.

The new format incorporates a variety of features that ensure maximum flexibility for sanctions list creators, while also limiting the need for future changes to the underlying data specification due to the standard’s adaptability.  The new capabilities associated with the advanced sanctions list format are discussed are International Financial Law Prof Blog.

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Is HSBC a Bad Actor or Is Argentina About To Go Out of Business (Again)? 

Posted by williambyrnes on January 14, 2015


See the full analysis at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

The Argentina Government has stopped HSBC Argentina from transferring money abroad, for 30 days.  See the Reuters and the Fox Latino articles linked at International Financial Law Prof Blog.  The Central Bank stated the reason for such a drastic action is HSBC’s lack of ability to correctly document such transfers.  The Argentina revenue authority has also recently raided HSBC’s offices, accusing it of assisting Argentina’s wealthy commit tax evasion through Swiss accounts.

Yet, one cannot help but ponder whether this is an isolated move against a bad actor, authorized by the requisite legislation and pursuant to due process, or whether this is politically motivated for other reasons?  Read this article at International Financial Law Prof Blog

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Health Care Law Brings Changes to IRS Tax Forms

Posted by williambyrnes on January 14, 2015


The IRS announced that the tax forms for the 2014 tax year have some dramatic modifications to allow for enforcement of Obama Care (aka the “Affordable Care Act” and “ACA”).

Existing forms have new lines integrated and the IRS has created two new forms that some taxpayers must now file with the tax return.

Many taxpayers will only need to check a box on their tax return if they had the requisite health coverage for all of 2014 as require by the ACA so as to avoid penalties.  Forms 1040, 1040A, and 1040EZ also have new lines to complete related to the health care law.

Two New Tax Forms for Taxpayers 

Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions

  • Complete this form to report a Marketplace-granted coverage exemption or claim an IRS-granted coverage exemption on the return.
  • Use the worksheet in the Form 8965 Instructions to calculate the shared responsibility payment.

Form 8962, Premium Tax Credit

  • Complete this form to reconcile advance payments of the premium tax credit, and to claim this credit on the tax return.

Additionally, if individuals purchased coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace, they should receive Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement, which will help complete Form 8962.

Modifications of Existing 2014 Tax Forms

Form 1040

  • Line 46: Enter advance payments of the premium tax credit that must be repaid
  • Line 61: Report health coverage and enter individual shared responsibility payment
  • Line 69: If eligible, claim net premium tax credit, which is the excess of allowed premium tax credit over advance credit payments

Form 1040A

  • Line 29: Enter advance payments of the premium tax credit that must be repaid
  • Line 38: Report health coverage and enter individual shared responsibility payment
  • Line 45: If eligible, claim net premium tax credit, which is the excess of allowed premium tax credit over advance credit payments

Form 1040EZ

  • Line 11: Report health coverage and enter individual shared responsibility payment
  • Form 1040EZ cannot be used to report advance payments or to claim the premium tax credit

Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business

2014_tf_on_individuals_small_businesses-m_1Due to a number of recent changes in the law, taxpayers are currently facing many questions connected to important issues such as healthcare, home office use, capital gains, investments, and whether an individual is considered an employee or a contractor.  Financial advisors are continually looking for competitive information to help them provide the best answers for their clients and to obtain new clients.  National Underwriter’s Tax Facts series is the only resource written specifically for the financial advisor and producer providing fast, clear, and authoritative answers to pressing questions, and it does so in the convenient, timesaving, Q&A format for which Tax Facts is famous.

Anyone interested can try Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business, risk-free for 30 days, with a 100% guarantee of complete satisfaction.  For more information, please go to http://www.nationalunderwriter.com/2015-tax-facts-on-individuals-small-business.html or call 1-800-543-0874.

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OECD Discloses Letters & Comments About BEPS Action Plans

Posted by williambyrnes on January 13, 2015


read and download the comments and letters released – International Financial Law Prof Blog

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Comparison of NAFTA, BRIC, EU and Caribbean of the 8 FATCA GIIN Lists (June 2014 -> January 2015)

Posted by williambyrnes on January 12, 2015


see the full analysis at International Financial Law Prof Blog excerpted below.

Caribbean and Atlantic Financial Centers Registrations

The Cayman Islands remain the global FATCA compliance registration leader with 27,011 FFIs, almost 7,000 more compliant FFIs than the UK.  The June GIIN list included 1,837 BVI FFI registrations, now at 4,653.  Bahamas has increased from 610 to 882, Bermuda 1,242 to 1,824 and Panama 450 to 773.  …

By the way, the 3rd edition of my Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance will be out soon with substantial more analysis – 1,200 pages over 54 chapters.  Over 50 FATCA compliance experts from tier 1 institutions, former government officials, and professional firms have contributed to create this detailed and robust guide, filled with numerous practical examples and several chapters written specifically for the non-legal, compliance operations officer.  No filler pages of publicly available documents and regurgitated regulations – it’s all beef.  See the Lexis website to order a copy of this 3rd edition.

 

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Is Acquirer Responsible for FCPA Pre-Acquisition Conduct of Target Company?

Posted by williambyrnes on January 12, 2015


a75b7-6a00d8341bfae553ef01bb07a93894970d-piSee International Financial Law Prof Blog.

Is Acquirer Responsible for FCPA Pre-Acquisition Conduct of Target Company?

full analysis at http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/intfinlaw/2015/01/is-acquirer-responsible-for-fcpa-pre-acquisition-conduct-of-target-company.html

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Are HNWI Passports Obtained Through St. Kitts and Nevis Used to Facilitate Terrorism? FinCEN Adds to EDD Lists!

Posted by williambyrnes on January 10, 2015


post from the International Financial Law Prof Blog.

See FinCEN Announcement at http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/intfinlaw/2015/01/passports-obtained-through-st-kitts-and-nevis-citizenship-by-investment-program-used-to-facilitate-financial-crime.html

 

Posted in Financial Crimes | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

112 Intergovernmental Agreements and counting …. only 123 countries left out in the FATCA cold

Posted by williambyrnes on January 9, 2015


read the post at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/intfinlaw/2015/01/112-intergovernmental-agreements-and-counting-only-123-countries-left-out-in-the-fatca-cold.html

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Lexis FATCA expert Haydon Perryman explains FATCA’s Impact for 2015

Posted by williambyrnes on January 8, 2015


Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance – 2015 Edition Out Soon

1,200 pages of analysis of the compliance challenges, over 54 chapters by 70 FATCA contributing experts from over 30 countries.  Besides in-depth, practical analysis, the 2015 edition includes examples, charts, time lines, links to source documents, and compliance analysis pursuant to the IGA and local regulations for many U.S. trading partners and financial centers.   The Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance, designed from interviews with over 100 financial institutions and professional firms, is a primary reference source for financial institutions and service providers, advisors and government departments.  No filler of forms and regs – it’s all beef !  See Lexis’ order site and request a copy of the forthcoming 2015 edition – http://www.lexisnexis.com/store/catalog/booktemplate/productdetail.jsp?pageName=relatedProducts&prodId=prod19190327

free download of 2014 Edition chapter at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2457671

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What Is the Impact of the Overturned Convictions of United States v. Newman on Insider Trading Prosecutions, such as SAC Capital’s ?

Posted by williambyrnes on January 8, 2015


read the analysis at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

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$2 Billion Available for 2015 International Educational Exchange in Federal Appropriations

Posted by williambyrnes on January 8, 2015


read about it at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

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US Automatic Exchange of Bank Information to 86 Foreign Countries in 2015

Posted by williambyrnes on January 7, 2015


See full post at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

This revenue procedure lists the countries with which the Treasury Department and the IRS have determined that it is appropriate to have an automatic exchange relationship requiring the reporting of certain deposit interest paid to nonresident alien individuals on or after January 1, 2013. Section 1.6049-4(b)(5) provides that in the case of interest aggregating $10 or more paid to a nonresident alien individual the payor is required to make an information return on Form 1042-S for the calendar year in which the interest is paid.   See the list at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

 

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IRS releases International Data Exchange Service Guide for FATCA

Posted by williambyrnes on January 7, 2015


See International Financial Law Prof Blog.

Abstract: This guide is intended to serve as a tool for FIs and Host Country Tax Authorities (HCTAs) who enroll in the International Data Exchange Service (IDES) to transmit FATCA data. The document assumes that the reader is familiar with the FATCA regulations and is experienced with extensible markup language (XML) and schema technology.  Post on International Financial Law Prof Blog

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FATCA GIIN January 2015 FFI Registration Analysis … by the numbers

Posted by williambyrnes on January 5, 2015


d27f6-6a00d8341bfae553ef01b7c6eb77bd970b-piThe IRS published its first FATCA GIIN list of 2015 (on New Years Day!) a list of “approved FFIs” i.e. a list of those who have registered on the IRS FATCA portal by December 23, 2014.  FATCA’s 30% withholding regime on “withholdable payments” for non-IGA countries has applied since July 1, 2014.  But since New Years Day this FATCA (Chapter 4) withholding also applies to IGA countries’ FFIs that do not supply a GIIN upon the proper W8 (or ‘equivalent’) certification documentation.

read the full analysis of the numbers at International Financial Law Prof Blog:

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/intfinlaw/2015/01/fatca-giin-january-2015-ffi-registration-analysis-by-the-numbers-.html

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IRS Provides Last Minute FATCA Extension for QIs, WPs and WTs

Posted by williambyrnes on December 30, 2014


Qualified Intermediary (QI) Agreement, Withholding Foreign Partnership (WP) Agreement, and Withholding Foreign Trust (WT) Agreement

Treasury-Dept.-Seal-of-the-IRSExtension of Time for QIs, WPs, and WTs to Apply Certain Requirements of the Joint Account Option under the QI Agreement, the WP Agreement, or the WT Agreement.This email applies to certain entities that apply to enter into or have entered into the Qualified Intermediary (QI) Agreement published in Revenue Procedure 2014-39, 2014-29 I.R.B. 151, and certain entities that apply to enter into or have entered into the Withholding Foreign Partnership Agreement or Withholding Foreign Trust Agreement, published in Revenue Procedure 2014-47, 2014-35 I.R.B. 393.

Section 4.05 of the QI Agreement provides the requirements for a QI that applies the joint account option to a partnership or trust.  Section 9.01 of the WP Agreement and WT Agreement provides the requirements for a WP or WT that applies the joint account option to a partnership or trust.

The IRS provided Notice that Section 4.05 of the QI Agreement and Section 9.01 of the WP Agreement and WT Agreement are modified to include the following with respect to a QI’s, WP’s, or WT’s application of the joint account option:

• For the period beginning on the effective date of the QI Agreement, and ending June 30, 2015, a QI that has entered into an agreement under section 4A.01 of the former QI Agreement (see Revenue Procedure 2003-64, 2003-2 C.B. 306, adding section 4A to the former QI agreement (published in Revenue Procedure 2000-12, 2000-1 C.B. 387), as amended by Revenue Procedure 2004-21, 2004-1 C.B. 702) with a partnership or trust to apply the joint account option before June 30, 2014, may continue to document the account consistent with section 4A.01 of the former QI Agreement.

• For the period beginning on the effective date of the WP Agreement or WT Agreement, and ending June 30, 2015, a WP or WT that has entered into an agreement under section 10.01 of the former WP Agreement or WT Agreement (published in Revenue Procedure 2003-64 (as amended by Revenue Procedure 2004-21)) with a partnership or trust to apply the joint account option before June 30, 2014, may continue to document the account consistent with section 10.01 of the former WP Agreement or WT Agreement.

• Notwithstanding the prior statements, a QI, WP, or WT is required to withhold under chapter 4 with respect to a partnership or trust to which it has applied the joint account option to the extent required under the QI, WP, or WT Agreement (for example, a QI, WP, or WT must withhold if it has actual knowledge that the partnership or trust is a nonparticipating FFI).,

—>> Free download for Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance   <<—-

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US-Brazil FATCA Impact 2-Hour Lecture Recording

Posted by williambyrnes on December 29, 2014


Teaser! Para quem perdeu a brilhante palestra do Dr.William Byrnes traduzida ao vivo, aguarde: em breve disponível integralmente em nosso site > IBET/OAB-SC <

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Should a Congressman Resign After Pleading Guilty to Tax Fraud and Employing Illegals? Or Continue To Receive his Congressional Paycheck while in Prison? Keep His Pension?

Posted by williambyrnes on December 26, 2014


Read about the Congressman who pled guilty this week to tax fraud on the Finance Law Professor Blog!

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IRS Releases FATCA Q&A for IGA FFIs Registration

Posted by williambyrnes on December 24, 2014


d27f6-6a00d8341bfae553ef01b7c6eb77bd970b-piIGA Question 8: Announcement 2014-38 provides that a jurisdiction that is treated as if it has an IGA in effect, but that has not yet signed an IGA, retains such status beyond December 31, 2014, provided that the jurisdiction continues to demonstrate firm resolve to sign the IGA that was agreed in substance.  Given this additional time to sign the IGA, does a reporting Model 1 FFI in such a jurisdiction need to register and obtain a GIIN before January 1, 2015?

Announcement 2014-38 does not change the requirement in the chapter 4 regulations that for payments made on or after January 1, 2015, in order for withholding not to apply, a withholding agent may treat a reporting Model 1 FFI as a registered deemed-compliant FFI only if the withholding agent has a withholding certificate identifying the payee as a registered deemed-compliant FFI and the withholding certificate contains a GIIN for the payee that is verified in the manner described in those regulations.  Thus, to avoid withholding on certain payments made on or after January 1, 2015, a reporting Model 1 FFI should register and obtain a GIIN to properly certify its status to a withholding agent required to document the FFI for chapter 4 purposes.   A reporting Model 1 FFI that has registered but not yet obtained a GIIN should indicate to its withholding agent that its GIIN is “applied for,” and in such case, the withholding agent will have 90 days from the date it receives the Form W-8 to obtain a GIIN and to verify the accuracy of the GIIN against the published IRS FII list before it has reason to know that the payee is not a registered deemed-compliant FFI.

Announcement 2014-38 similarly does not change the timing of any other due diligence and reporting requirements in the chapter 4 regulations.

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Israeli Bank Pays $300 Million, Admits U.S. Tax Evasion by Clients

Posted by williambyrnes on December 23, 2014


A major Israeli international bank admitted that it conspired to aid and assist U.S. taxpayers to prepare and present false tax returns to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by hiding income and assets in offshore bank accounts in Israel and elsewhere around the world.

Read the post here ….

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Brasil e FATCA – troca de informações fiscais entre Brasil e Estados Unidos

Posted by williambyrnes on December 18, 2014


A Academia Tributária promove nesta sexta (19), às 10 horas, na OAB/SC, o curso Brasil e FATCA: troca de informações fiscais entre Brasil e Estados Unidos. O curso será nas dependências da Escola Superior da Advocacia.

O palestrante será do professor William Byrnes, dos Estados Unidos, autor de mais de 1.000 artigos publicados na área tributária.

See OAB/SC

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IRS Revises FATCA Form 8966 Instructions and IDES for Tax Information Sharing Guide

Posted by williambyrnes on December 18, 2014


1. IRS Posts Update to the Instructions for Form 8966 For 2014

9dc30-6a00d8341bfae553ef01bb07b43355970d-piThe IRS has posted an Update to the Instructions for Form 8966 for 2014 to the FATCA web page:

This update supplements the Instructions for Form 8966 to correct and clarify certain references to the reporting requirements of participating FFIs for the 2014 year, including to reflect a correcting amendment to section 1.1471-4(d)(7)(iv)(B) of the temporary chapter 4 regulations (TD 9657).

http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Corporations/Update-to-the-Instructions-for-Form-8966-For-2014

2. New! IDES User Guide (Draft Version)

A draft version of the International Data Exchange Services (“IDES”) User Guide is now available. The current draft discusses data preparation procedures and reporting for FIs and for foreign governments to transmit the tax information necessary to comply with FATCA.

In the upcoming weeks, IDES will post frequent updates and a final version of the IDES User Guide will be available in early January 2015.

http://www.irs.gov/pub/fatca/P%205190_IDES%20User%20Guide_v1_DRAFT_%20.pdf

Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance – 2015 Edition Out Soon

1,200 pages of analysis of the compliance challenges, over 54 chapters by 70 FATCA contributing experts from over 30 countries.  Besides in-depth, practical analysis, the 2015 edition includes examples, charts, time lines, links to source documents, and compliance analysis pursuant to the IGA and local regulations for many U.S. trading partners and financial centers.   The Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance, designed from interviews with over 100 financial institutions and professional firms, is a primary reference source for financial institutions and service providers, advisors and government departments.  See Lexis’ order site and request a copy of the forthcoming 2015 edition – http://www.lexisnexis.com/store/catalog/booktemplate/productdetail.jsp?pageName=relatedProducts&prodId=prod19190327

free download of 2014 Edition chapter at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2457671

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FATCA’s impact on Brazil-USA cross border activities (live seminar in Florianopolis)

Posted by williambyrnes on December 17, 2014


Brasil FATCA LectureThis Friday, December 19 at the OAB in Florianapolis – FATCA’s impact on Brazil-USA cross border activities, and the OECD’s Common Reporting Standards (“GATCA”), see link to come join the discussion.

Com o apoio da OAB/SC, Comissão de Direito Tributário, ESA, CRC e IBET-SC, lá vamos nós fechar o ano com chave de OURO!!! Tradução simultânea na palestra com o Prof. William Byrnes, bestselling author of 30 books for LexisNexis and Wolters Kluwer; Associate Dean, Graduate & Distance Education, International Tax & Financial Services; Fellowship, International Bureau of Fiscal Documentation; LL.M. Universiteit van Amsterdam. Vagas limitadíssimas para os primeiros 40 VIP guests. Corre: http://www.academiatributaria.com.br/?opcao=ver_curso&id=8

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2014 Tax Extenders Last Minute Passage

Posted by williambyrnes on December 17, 2014


9dc30-6a00d8341bfae553ef01bb07b43355970d-piReports PwC, the spending bill provides $10.6 billion in funding for the IRS – a reduction of $345.6 million from the fiscal year 2014.

Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014Title I: Certain Expiring Provisions – Amends the Internal Revenue Code to extend certain expiring tax provisions relating to individuals, businesses, and the energy sector.

Subtitle A: Individual Tax Extenders - Extends through 2014:

  • the tax deduction of expenses of elementary and secondary school teachers;
  • the tax exclusion of imputed income from the discharge of indebtedness for a principal residence;
  • the equalization of the tax exclusion for employer-provided commuter transit and parking benefits;
  • the tax deduction of mortgage insurance premiums;the tax deduction of state and local general sales taxes in lieu of state and local income taxes;
  • the tax deduction of contributions of capital gain real property for conservation purposes;
  • the tax deduction of qualified tuition and related expenses; and
  • the tax exemption of distributions from individual retirement accounts for charitable purposes.

Subtitle B: Business Tax Extenders - Extends through 2014:

  • the tax credit for increasing research activities;
  • the low-income housing tax credit rate for newly constructed non-federally subsidized buildings;
  • the Indian employment tax credit;
  • the new markets tax credit;the tax credit for qualified railroad track maintenance expenditures;
  • the tax credit for mine rescue team training expenses;
  • the tax credit for differential wage payments to employees who are active duty members of the Uniformed Services;
  • the work opportunity tax credit;
  • authority for issuance of qualified zone academy bonds;
  • the classification of race horses as three-year property for depreciation purposes;
  • accelerated depreciation of qualified leasehold improvement, restaurant, and retail improvement property, of motorsports entertainment complexes, and of business property on Indian reservations;
  • accelerated depreciation of certain business property (bonus depreciation);
  • the special rule allowing a tax deduction for charitable contributions of food inventory by taxpayers other than C corporations;
  • the increased expensing allowance for business assets, computer software, and qualified real property (i.e., leasehold improvement, restaurant, and retail improvement property);
  • the election to expense advanced mine safety equipment expenditures;
  • the expensing allowance for film and television production costs and costs of live theatrical productions;
  • the tax deduction for income attributable to domestic production activities in Puerto Rico;
  • tax rules relating to payments between related foreign corporations and dividends of regulated investment companies;
  • the treatment of regulated investment companies as qualified investment entities for purposes of the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA);
  • the subpart F income exemption for income derived in the active conduct of a banking, financing, or insurance business;
  • the tax rule exempting dividends, interest, rents, and royalties received or accrued from certain controlled foreign corporations by a related entity from treatment as foreign holding company income;
  • the 100% exclusion from gross income of gain from the sale of small business stock;
  • the basis adjustment rule for stock of an S corporation making charitable contributions of property;
  • the reduction of the recognition period for the built-in gains of S corporations;
  • tax incentives for investment in empowerment zones;
  • the increased level of distilled spirit excise tax payments into the treasuries of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands; and
  • the tax credit for American Samoa economic development expenditures.

Amends the Housing Assistance Tax Act of 2008 to extend through 2014 the exemption of the basic military housing allowance from the income test for programs financed by tax-exempt housing bonds.

Subtitle C: Energy Tax Extenders – Extends through 2014:

  • the tax credit for residential energy efficiency improvements;
  • the tax credit for second generation biofuel production;
  • the income and excise tax credits for biodiesel and renewable diesel fuel mixtures;
  • the tax credit for producing electricity using Indian coal facilities placed in service before 2009;
  • the tax credit for producing electricity using wind, biomass, geothermal, landfill gas, trash, hydropower, and marine and hydrokinetic renewable energy facilities;
  • the tax credit for energy efficient new homes;
  • the special depreciation allowance for second generation biofuel plant property;
  • the tax deduction for energy efficient commercial buildings;
  • tax deferral rules for sales or dispositions of qualified electric utilities; and
  • the excise tax credit for alternative fuels and fuels involving liquefied hydrogen.

Subtitle D: Extenders Relating to Multiemployer Defined Benefit Pension Plans – Extends through 2015 the automatic extensions of amortization periods for multiemployer defined benefit pension plans and for multiemployer funding rules under the Pension Protection Act of 2006.

Title II: Technical Corrections – Tax Technical Corrections Act of 2014Makes technical and clerical amendments to:

  • the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012;
  • the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012;
  • the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012;
  • the Regulated Investment Company Modernization Act of 2010;
  • the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010;
  • the Creating Small Business Jobs Act of 2010;
  • the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act;
  • the American Recovery and Reinvestment Tax Act of 2009;
  • the Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008;
  • the Tax Extenders and Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act of 2008;
  • the Housing Assistance Tax Act of 2008;
  • the Heroes Earnings Assistance and Relief Tax Act of 2008;
  • the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008;
  • the Tax Technical Corrections Act of 2007;
  • the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006;
  • the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act of 2005: A Legacy for Users;
  • the Energy Tax Incentives Act of 2005; and
  • the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004.

Eliminates provisions in the Internal Revenue Code that are not used in computing current tax liabilities (referred to as deadwood provisions).

Title III: Joint Committee on Taxation - Provides that any refund or credit in excess of $5 million due to a C corporation taxpayer may not be made until the Secretary of the Treasury submits a report to the Joint Committee on Taxation providing information on such refund or credit.

Title IV: Budgetary Effects – Prohibits the entry of the budgetary effects of this Act on certain PAYGO scorecards.

JCX-107-14R (December 03, 2014) Estimated Revenue Effects Of H.R. 5771, The “Tax Increase Prevention Act Of 2014,”

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Highlights of Final FATCA Regulations for Reporting of Specified Foreign Financial Assets

Posted by williambyrnes on December 16, 2014


IRS has today notified the posting of the final regulations, effective December 12, 2014, TD 9706, Reporting of Specified Foreign Financial Assets, and removing the temporary regulations. The regulations can be found on the FATCA – Regulations and Other Guidance page in the For Individual Taxpayers section.

The IRS addressed such issues as dual residents, valuation challenges, foreign currency, virtual currency (left for another time), retirement accounts and insurance policies.  Below are the highlights of the changes for my readers.

Dual Resident Taxpayers

A comment recommended an exemption from the section 6038D reporting requirements be included for an individual who is a dual resident taxpayer and who, pursuant to a provision of a treaty that provides for resolution of conflicting claims of residence by the United States and the treaty partner, claims to be treated as a resident of the treaty partner.  In such a case, a dual resident taxpayer may claim a treaty benefit as a resident of the treaty partner and will be taxed as a nonresident for U.S. tax purposes for the taxable year (or portion of the taxable year) that the individual is treated as a nonresident.

The final rule adopts this recommendation for a dual resident taxpayer who determines his or her U.S. tax liability as if he or she were a nonresident alien and claims a treaty benefit as a nonresident of the United States as provided in § 301.7701(b)–7 by timely filing a Form 1040NR, ‘‘Nonresident Alien Income Tax Return,’’ (or such other appropriate form under that section) and attaching a Form 8833, ‘‘Treaty-Based Return Position Disclosure Under Section 6114 or 7701(b).’’ The Treasury Department and the IRS have concluded that reporting under section 6038D is closely associated with the determination of an individual’s income tax liability.

Because the taxpayer’s filing of a Form 8833 with his or her Form 1040NR (or other appropriate form) will permit the IRS to identify individuals in this category and take follow-up tax enforcement actions when considered appropriate, reporting on Form 8938, “Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets,’’ is not essential to effective IRS tax enforcement efforts relating to this category of U.S. residents.

Individuals Resident in the United States Under Non-Immigrant Visas

A number of comments requested an exemption from the section 6038D reporting requirements for foreign executives and employees resident in the United States under non-immigrant H, L, or E visas. The final rule does not adopt this recommendation. Because all U.S. residents are taxable on worldwide income, excluding categories of residents from the scope of section 6038D reporting is not consistent with the purposes for which the provision was enacted.

Persons That Do Not Owe U.S. Tax for the Taxable Year

The final rule does not adopt any change.  If the law requires the filing of a tax return, however, information reported on a Form 8938 concerning the taxpayer’s specified foreign financial assets is an important component of that return, even if no tax liability is shown. Requiring this filing will aid the IRS in devising effective enforcement programs with respect to such returns.

Assets Held by a Disregarded Entity

A number of comments requested clarification of the section 6038D reporting requirements with respect to specified foreign financial assets held by an entity disregarded as an entity separate from its owner under § 301.7701–2 of this chapter (a disregarded entity). In response to these requests, and consistent with instructions to Form 8938, the final rule provides in § 1.6038D–2(b)(4)(iii) that a specified person that owns a foreign or domestic entity that is a disregarded entity is treated as having an interest in any specified foreign financial assets held by the disregarded entity.

As a result, a specified person that owns a disregarded entity (whether domestic or foreign) that, in turn, owns specified foreign financial assets must include the value of those assets in determining whether the specified person meets the reporting thresholds in § 1.6038D–2(a) and, if so, must report such assets on Form 8938.

Jointly Owned Assets (§ 1.6038D–2(c))

A number of comments requested clarification of aspects of the rules in § 1.6038D–2(c) and (d) relating to joint owners of a specified foreign financial asset. These comments have been adopted.

Specifically, the final rule clarifies that each of the joint owners of a specified foreign financial asset who are not married to each other must include the full value of the asset (rather than only the value of the specified person’s interest in the asset) in determining whether the aggregate value of such specified individual’s specified foreign financial assets exceeds the applicable reporting thresholds, and each joint owner must report the full value of the asset on his or her Form 8938.

In addition, the final rule clarifies that, in the case of joint owners who are married to each other and file separate returns, each joint owner of a specified foreign financial asset must report the full value of the asset (rather than only the value of the specified person’s interest in the asset) on the individual’s Form 8938, even if both spouses are specified individuals and only one-half of the value of the asset is considered in determining the applicable reporting thresholds under § 1.6038D–2(c)(3)(i).

Retirement and Pension Accounts and Certain Non-Retirement Savings Accounts

These final regulations modify the definition of a financial account for purposes of section 6038D in order to require consistent reporting under section 6038D with respect to retirement and pension accounts and certain non- retirement savings accounts regardless of whether the account is maintained in a jurisdiction treated as having in effect a Model 1 IGA or Model 2 IGA. For financial accounts that are maintained by a foreign financial institution that is not located in a jurisdiction treated as having in effect a Model 1 IGA or Model 2 IGA, the definition of a financial account in the final rule continues to include the retirement and pension accounts and non-retirement savings accounts described in § 1.1471–5(b)(2)(i), consistent with the section 6038D coordination rule in that section.

Reporting on Both FinCEN Form 114 and Form 8938

A number of comments recommended that a foreign account reported on FinCEN Form 114, ‘‘Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts,’’ (formerly Form TD F 90–22.1, ‘‘Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts’’) (an FBAR), should not be required to be reported on Form 8938.  he final rule does not adopt this recommendation.

Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance – 2015 Edition Out Soon

1,200 pages of analysis of the compliance challenges, over 54 chapters by 70 FATCA contributing experts from over 30 countries.  Besides in-depth, practical analysis, the 2015 edition includes examples, charts, time lines, links to source documents, and compliance analysis pursuant to the IGA and local regulations for many U.S. trading partners and financial centers.   The Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance, designed from interviews with over 100 financial institutions and professional firms, is a primary reference source for financial institutions and service providers, advisors and government departments.  See Lexis’ order site and request a copy of the forthcoming 2015 edition – http://www.lexisnexis.com/store/catalog/booktemplate/productdetail.jsp?pageName=relatedProducts&prodId=prod19190327

free download of 2014 Edition chapter at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2457671

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Must Santa Claus Pay Tax? End of Year Gift Tax Facts

Posted by williambyrnes on December 15, 2014


Find out which of your clients need to pay the federal gift tax and what the annual exclusion amount is for 2014 and 2015

2014_tf_on_individuals_small_businesses-m_1Due to a number of recent changes in the law, taxpayers are currently facing many questions connected to important issues such as healthcare, home office use, capital gains, investments, and whether an individual is considered an employee or a contractor. Financial advisors are continually looking for updated tax information that can help them provide the right answers to the right people at the right time. This book provides fast, clear, and authoritative answers to pressing questions, and it does so in the convenient, timesaving, Q&A format for which Tax Facts is famous.

Anyone interested can try Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business, risk-free for 30 days, with a 100% guarantee of complete satisfaction.  For more information, please go to http://www.nationalunderwriter.com/2015-tax-facts-on-individuals-small-business.html or call 1-800-543-0874.

Posted in Estate Tax, Taxation | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

New IRS Standard Mileage Rates – Business Rate Rise in 2015

Posted by williambyrnes on December 12, 2014


The IRS issued the 2015 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes.

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Beginning on Jan. 1, 2015, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car, van, pickup or panel truck will be:

  • 57.5 cents per mile for business miles driven, up from 56 cents in 2014
  • 23 cents per mile driven for medical or moving purposes, down half a cent from 2014
  • 14 cents per mile driven in service of charitable organizations

The standard mileage rate for business is based on an annual study of the fixed and variable costs of operating an automobile, including depreciation, insurance, repairs, tires, maintenance, gas and oil. The rate for medical and moving purposes is based on the variable costs, such as gas and oil. The charitable rate is set by law.

Taxpayers always have the option of claiming deductions based on the actual costs of using a vehicle rather than the standard mileage rates.

A taxpayer may not use the business standard mileage rate for a vehicle after claiming accelerated depreciation, including the Section 179 expense deduction, on that vehicle. Likewise, the standard rate is not available to fleet owners (more than four vehicles used simultaneously). Details on these and other special rules are in Revenue Procedure 2010-51, the instructions to Form 1040and various online IRS publications including Publication 17, Your Federal Income Tax.

Besides the standard mileage rates, Notice 2014-79, posted today on IRS.gov, also includes the basis reduction amounts for those choosing the business standard mileage rate, as well as the maximum standard automobile cost   that may be used in computing an allowance under  a fixed and variable rate plan.

2015_tf_on_indiv_sm_business_cover-mTax Facts on Individuals & Small Business focuses exclusively on what individuals and small businesses need to know to maximize opportunities under today’s often complex tax rules.  It is the essential tax reference for financial advisors, & planners; insurance professionals; CPAs; attorneys; and other practitioners advising small businesses and individuals.

Organized in a convenient Q&A format to speed you to the information you need, Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business delivers the latest guidance on:
• Healthcare & New Medicare Tax and Net Investment Income tax
• Business Deductions and Losses including Home Office
• Contractor vs. Employee — clarified!
• Business Life Insurance
• Small Business Entity Choices & Small Business Valuation
• Capital Gains & Investor Losses
• Accounting — including guidance on how standards change as the business grows

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5 Tax Facts for Year End IRA

Posted by williambyrnes on December 11, 2014


Individual Retirement Accounts are an important way to save for retirement. A taxpayer who has an IRA or who may open one soon need to be aware of four key year-end Tax Facts.

1. What is the IRA Annual Contribution Limit for 2014?  A taxpayer can contribute up to a maximum of $5,500 ($6,500 if 50 or older) to a traditional or Roth IRA. If a taxpayer files a joint return with a spouse, each taxpayer may contribute to an IRA even if only one has taxable compensation.  In some cases, the taxpayer may need to reduce the income tax deduction allowed for the traditional IRA contributions.  This income tax deduction reduction applies if one of the spouses has a retirement plan already at work and their combined income is above a certain level.

2. What is the Last Day to Contribute to 2014 IRA Limit? A taxpayer can actually contribute in 2015 toward the 2014 IRA contribution maximum amount allowed, but the last day for such catch up contribution is April 15, 2015 (the date the tax return for 2014 is due).

3. What is the Penalty for Contributing More Than the Limit?  A taxpayer is subject to a six percent tax on the excess contribution above the IRA contribution limit for the year.  Worse though, the tax applies each year that the excess amount remains in the IRA account.  To avoid this penalty, a taxpayer must withdraw the excess amount from the IRA by April 15, 2014, or by the date of any 2014 filing extension.

4. When Must a Taxpayer Begin Taking the IRA Required Minimum Distributions (RMD)?  When a taxpayer reaches age 70½, then a required minimum distribution, or RMD, is required from a traditional IRA.  However, a Roth IRA does not have a RMD.  The RMD is required by Dec. 31, 2014.  But the deadline is April 1, 2015 if the taxpayer reached 70½ in 2014.

When a taxpayer has more than one traditional IRA, then the RMD calculation is required to be made separately for each IRA. But, the total RMD can be withdrawn from just one, or more of them.  The penalty for not taking the full annual RMD amount is a 50 percent excise tax on the RMD amount not withdrawn.

5. What is the Saver’s credit?  The formal name of the saver’s credit is the retirement savings contributions credit. A taxpayer may potentially qualify for this credit if contributing to an IRA or retirement plan. The saver’s credit can increase the tax refund or reduce the tax owed for 2014.

2015_tf_on_indiv_sm_business_cover-mTax Facts on Individuals & Small Business focuses exclusively on what individuals and small businesses need to know to maximize opportunities under today’s often complex tax rules.  It is the essential tax reference for financial advisors, & planners; insurance professionals; CPAs; attorneys; and other practitioners advising small businesses and individuals.

Organized in a convenient Q&A format to speed you to the information you need, Tax Facts on Individuals & Small Business delivers the latest guidance on:
• Healthcare & New Medicare Tax and Net Investment Income tax
• Business Deductions and Losses including Home Office
• Contractor vs. Employee — clarified!
• Business Life Insurance
• Small Business Entity Choices & Small Business Valuation
• Capital Gains & Investor Losses
• Accounting — including guidance on how standards change as the business grows

Posted in Retirement Planning | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Paul Greenwood, former Islanders co-owner, sentenced to 10 years for billion dollar ponzi scheme

Posted by williambyrnes on December 9, 2014


read the full story on International Financial Law Prof Blog.

720px-US-CFTC-Seal.svgThe U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)  announced that Paul Greenwood operated a $1.3 billion investment scam where he and a co-Defendant misappropriated at least $554 million from commodity pool participants, was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison for charges related to his participation in the scam. Earlier, on July 28, 2010, Greenwood pled guilty to a six-count criminal indictment on the charges, including a commodities fraud charge in violation of the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA).  read the full story on International Financial Law Prof Blog.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Revised FFIEC Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering Examination Manual

Posted by williambyrnes on December 5, 2014


The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) released the revised Bank FFIECSecrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering (BSA/AML) Examination Manual for 2014.

Statement of Applicability to Institutions With Total Assets Under $1 Billion: This Financial Institution Letter applies to all FDIC-supervised banks and savings associations, including community institutions.  The BSA/AML Examination Manual – see International Financial Law Prof Blog.

Posted in Financial Crimes, Money Laundering | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

International Financial Law Prof Blog

Posted by williambyrnes on December 2, 2014


read the entire story with links at International Financial Law Prof Blog.

An analysis of the crime of bribery of foreign public officials

FATF logoMost international bribes are paid by large companies, usually with the knowledge of senior management, according to new OECD analysis of the cost of foreign bribery and corruption.

Bribes in the analysed cases equalled 10.9% of the total transaction value on average, and 34.5% of the profits – equal to USD 13.8 million per bribe. But given the complexity and concealed nature of corrupt transactions, this is without doubt the mere tip of the iceberg, says the OECD.

Posted in Financial Crimes, Money Laundering | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Analysis of the 2014 FATCA GIIN Registration Lists

Posted by williambyrnes on December 2, 2014


International Financial Law Prof Blog

FATCA_rollHaydon Perryman and I have sifted through the GIIN lists of June through December.  I present Part 1 initial analysis below.  Part 2 on Thursday.

By the way, the 3rd edition of my Lexis Guide to FATCA Compliance will be out soon with substantial more analysis – 1,200 pages over 54 chapters.  Over 50 FATCA compliance experts from tier 1 institutions, former government officials, and professional firms have contributed to create this detailed and robust guide, filled with numerous practical examples and several chapters written specifically for the non-legal, compliance operations officer.  No filler pages of publicly available documents and regurgitated regulations – it’s all beef.  See the Lexis website to order a copy of this 3rd edition.

…. The November 2014 list saw a jump in registration, led by the United Kingdom, achieving a total of 116,104 FFIs and branch registrations.[6]  43 percent of all registered GIIN are from the UK and her Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories. The final GIIN list released before submission for publication, December’s, grew by only six thousand registrations, to 122,881, of which only 6,094 were from non-IGA countries.  Such a stunted growth in FFI registration is foreboding of the remaining, significant compliance challenges. …. read the entire story at International Financial Law Prof Blog

Posted in FATCA | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

 
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