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William Byrnes (Texas A&M) tax & compliance articles

Posts Tagged ‘Douglas Shulman’

IRS Kicks Off New Offshore Amnesty Program

Posted by William Byrnes on April 6, 2011

Taxpayers with assets hidden in offshore accounts will get a second chance to voluntarily declare their assets to the IRS in return for reduced penalties under the new Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative (“OVDI”).

This newest offshore amnesty program offers a reduced, 25% penalty which will be calculated based on the highest aggregate amount in the taxpayer’s offshore account between 2003 and 2010.   In addition to penalties, program participants will be required to pay eight years of back taxes plus interest, accuracy related penalties, and delinquency penalties.  Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of offshore issues in Advisor’s Journal, see IRS Planning New Voluntary Disclosure Program for Offshore Assets (CC 10-118)Offshore’s Limited Shelf Life (CC 10-47)IRS Proposed FATCA Guidance Expands Offshore Compliance Initiatives (CC 10-52)


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2012 IRS Budget Revealed !!

Posted by William Byrnes on March 26, 2011

Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers?  Increasing the IRS staffing budget in certain departments may be indicative of increasing scrutiny of client’s information and tax returns.  Increasing government scrutiny may lead to increased compliance costs in time and fees.  Consequently, a wealth manager may want to address with client the need for increasing diligence in preparation of their affairs.  Thus, Advanced Market Intelligence presents a discussion on the Internal Revenue Services’ allocations for fiscal year 2012, and contrasts 2010 data and figures.

The fiscal year 2012 proposed budget allocates $14 billion to the Department of the Treasury; a 4 percent increase above the 2010 enacted level. [1] The increase over 2010 levels is attributed to costs associated with implementation of legislation and new investments in IRS tax compliance activities that are aimed to help reduce the deficit.  Of the $14 billion appropriated to the Treasury operations, over $13.28 billion is encumbered for the Internal Revenue Service.[2]

The Internal Revenue Service has allocated its appropriations to the tune of $2.345 billion for “Taxpayer Services”; $5. 96 billion for “Enforcement” of which over $5 billion is apportioned to “Exam and Collections”; “Operations and Support” represent $4.62 billion; and “Business Systems Modernization” together with “Health Insurance Tax Credit Administration” represent approximately $351 million. [3]

The main function of the Internal Revenue Service is to collect he revenue that funds the government and administer the nation’s tax laws. [4] The IRS collected $2.345 trillion in taxes (gross receipts before tax refunds) in 2010, or 93 percent of all federal government receipts.

Total resources to support the IRS activities for fiscal year 2012 are estimated to be around $13.626 billion, including $13.283 billion from direct appropriations, an estimated $138 million from reimbursable programs, and an estimated $204 million user fees.  The direct federal budget appropriation is $1,137,784,000, 9.37 percent, more than the fiscal year 2010 enacted level of $12,146,123,000. [5]

The 2012 budget provides funding to implement enacted legislation; handle new information reporting requirements; increase compliance by addressing offshore tax evasion; expand enforcement efforts on noncompliance among corporate and high-wealth taxpayers; and enforce return preparer compliance.

The IRS estimates new enforcement personnel will generate more than $1.3 billion in additional annual enforcement revenue once the new hires reach full potential in fiscal year 2014.

Even the Department of the Treasury notes, the tax law is complex and that even sophisticated taxpayers can make honest mistakes on their tax returns.  To this end, the IRS states that it remains committed to a balanced program of assisting taxpayers to both understand the tax law and remit the proper amount of tax.

In fiscal year 2010, revenue from all enforcement sources at the IRS reached $57.6 billion, 18 percent more than in 2009.  The significant increase was attributable in part to:  Read the analysis at AdvisorFYI


Posted in Tax Policy | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Finance Committee Promises AMT Patch

Posted by William Byrnes on December 9, 2010

Ways and Means Committee, US Legislative Branch

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Record numbers of taxpayers will be subject to the 2010 alternative minimum tax (AMT) if Congress does not act by the end of the year. Congress has considered a number of possible AMT “patches” that would reduce the number of taxpayers subject to the AMT but has been unable to agree on the right approach.  Although Congress passes an AMT patch annually, this year’s patch is coming later than usual.

In a November 9, 2010, letter to the IRS’s Douglas Shulman, House Ways and Means and Senate Finance committee members said that the IRS should expect Congress to pass 2010 alternative minimum tax relief by the end of this year. The joint letter was signed by Finance Committee Chair Max Baucus (D-Mont.), Finance Committee ranking minority member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), acting Ways and Means Committee Chair Sander M. Levin, (D-Mich.), and Ways and Means Committee ranking minority member Dave Camp (R-Mich.).   Read this complete article at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For in-depth analysis of the AMT, see Advisor’s Main Library: Section 19.D—Additional Taxes; Credits For Prepayments.

We invite your questions and comments by posting them below or by calling the Panel of Experts.

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