Tax News

July 16, 2008 12:00 am

The top rate on most long-term capital gains and qualified dividends for regular tax purposes is 15%. But there's a trap: Taxpayers with such income who are subject to the alternative minimum tax...

July 16, 2008 12:00 am

The Office of the Taxpayer Advocate is an independent organization within the IRS that assists taxpayers who are experiencing economic harm and also advises the IRS on issues that need to be addresse...

July 7, 2008 12:00 am

In today's tough economy, investments in personal portfolios, 401(k) plans, and individual retirement accounts (IRAs) may be down. Fortunately, the tax law lets you ease your financial pain by claimin...

June 30, 2008 12:00 am

A homeowner can gain from the sale of a primary residence up to $250,000, or $500,000 on a joint return, if he or she has owned and lived in the home for at least two of the five years preceding the ...

June 25, 2008 12:00 am

As of June 20, the Treasury Department had sent out 9.071 million checks under the Economic Stimulus Act totaling $6.919 billion. However, some people who are eligible to receive a check have not app...

June 9, 2008 12:00 am

Interest on a tax deficiency (underpayment) generally runs from the due date of the return until the tax is paid. Interest is compounded (interest is charged on interest), so the longer the dispute g...

June 9, 2008 12:00 am

If you can't pay your tax bill in full and want to arrange to pay it off in installments, you can use the IRS Online Payment Agreement (OPA) application. The OPA application can be used to obtain...

June 9, 2008 12:00 am

As you make your vacation plans for the summer, you might want to keep in mind some options that allow you to transform nondeductible personal expenses of the trip into a partially deductible expense....

June 2, 2008 12:00 am

E-file is the IRS system for submitting tax returns electronically. E-filing can be done through a paid preparer or by using a home computer (through commercial software or the FreeFile program).Go...

May 30, 2008 12:00 am

The federal tax system is based on the idea of "pay as you go." You can't just wait until April 15 each year to pay the taxes you owe. The law requires you to make payments throughout the year-through...

May 28, 2008 12:00 am

Congress has overridden a presidential veto to enact the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, creating $1.7 billion in tax incentives for farmers. Some key provisions that will help farmers an...

May 9, 2008 12:00 am

With summer around the corner and the real estate market ripe for the picking (because real estate prices and mortgage interest rates are both down), the number of owners of vacation property could gr...

May 8, 2008 12:00 am

Medical residents may receive stipends for work they perform in the course of their studies. Are these stipends treated as wages for the purposes of Social Security and Medicare (FICA) taxes? It depen...

May 1, 2008 12:00 am

Taxpayers who used direct deposit for their 2007 refunds automatically received their stimulus checks in the same way. Direct deposits of 2007 tax refunds could have been directed not only to checkin...

May 1, 2008 12:00 am

American citizens who work abroad remain taxable in the United States on their worldwide income. However, they can enjoy certain tax breaks designed to alleviate the burden of paying taxes to two cou...

May 1, 2008 12:00 am

Generally, the value of a deceased individual's property is determined on the date of death. However, the person's estate can opt to use an alternate valuation date, which is 6 months after t...

April 25, 2008 12:00 am

If you participate in a 401(k), 403(b), or 457 plan and leave your employer, you have a unique opportunity to profoundly impact your future retirement income. Instead of leaving the funds in the plan ...

April 23, 2008 12:00 am

A whistleblower, Marrita Murphy, was awarded $70,000 for emotional or mental anguish for injury to her professional reputation in a suit against her former employer. She maintained that this money wa...

April 23, 2008 12:00 am

You've filed your return and are waiting for the check to arrive. Use an online tool to track the check's progress. The IRS's "Where's My Refund?" application lets you see w...

April 8, 2008 12:00 am

Joint custody is common today when parents divorce, but it does not automatically confer the right to claim a dependency exemption or child tax credit for one parent or the other. Generally, the righ...

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Tax Glossary

S corporation

A corporation that elects S status in order to receive tax treatment similar to that of a partnership.

More terms