Tax News

November 8, 2018 2:04 am

Following the widespread losses of investments with Bernard Madoff, the IRS issued a safe harbor (Rev. Proc. 2009-20) to enable investors to take losses even though some recovery was possible. One cou...

November 8, 2018 2:03 am

If you use your vehicle for business driving, you have a choice in how to handle your expenses. You can deduct your actual costs, including an allowance for depreciation (up to certain dollar limits) ...

November 8, 2018 2:00 am

If you conduct an activity without a profit motive you can prove, then the hobby loss rule applies. Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, you have to report all of your income (nothing has been changed her...

November 8, 2018 1:58 am

More than 62 million Social Security beneficiaries will receive a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) of 2.8% starting with the December 2018 benefits, which are payable in January 2019. This COLA adjust...

September 26, 2018 10:09 pm

A couple got divorced in Nevada in 2011. Their agreement provided for tax-free transfers of property as well as spousal support. One spouse made payments on the other’s Sallie Mae student loans and ...

September 26, 2018 10:07 pm

The IRS may adjust interest rates for various purposes at various times. For example, the rates for overpayments and underpayments of income tax are adjusted quarterly.Interest rates for Q4 in 201...

September 26, 2018 10:06 pm

Anyone who’s dealt with the IRS knows it can be a hassle. For some, however, it can be downright problematic. One couple claimed that the IRS’s continued collection activities following their fili...

September 2, 2018 10:21 pm

After the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 put a $10,000 cap on the itemized deduction (starting in 2018) for state and local taxes ($5,000 for married persons filing separately), some states created or ...

September 2, 2018 10:19 pm

The IRS announced that it was using a new format for tax return transcripts to better protect taxpayer’s personal information (IR-2018-171, 8/22/18). Starting September 23, 2018, Get Transcript Onli...

September 2, 2018 10:15 pm

In 2014, the IRS created the Annual Filing Season Program for voluntary education and testing of unenrolled tax return preparers (Rev. Proc. 2014-42). Those completing the program gain a limited right...

September 2, 2018 10:12 pm

A taxpayer can claim the premium tax credit for assistance in paying for health coverage purchased through a government Marketplace. To be eligible, household income must be no more than 400% of the f...

September 2, 2018 10:03 pm

Ordinarily, yearly contributions to ABLE accounts are capped at the annual gift tax exclusion ($15,000 in 2018). The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act temporarily increased the contribution limit. For 2018 throug...

September 2, 2018 10:00 pm

In 2016, the U.S. Treasury created the Hardest Hit Fund (HHF) program to provide certain homeowners with assistance designed to help them keep their homes. States set up and administer the program, wh...

August 1, 2018 11:03 pm

If you buy an electric drive car, you may qualify for a tax credit of up to $7,500. However, the credit is reduced once the manufacturer has sold more than 200,000 cars in the U.S. Tesla reported that...

August 1, 2018 11:02 pm

To claim a home office deduction, space must be used regularly and exclusively for business. There are two exceptions to exclusive use: day care businesses and storage of inventory or product samples ...

August 1, 2018 11:00 pm

If a taxpayer files a fraudulent tax return, both civil and criminal penalties can result. The civil penalty is 75% of the underpayment attributable to the fraud (Code Sec. 6663). But if a fraud resul...

August 1, 2018 10:57 pm

If you have a plan loan outstanding and take a distribution that’s partially used to pay off the loan, are you taxed on the gross amount or the net amount (gross amount minus loan repayment)? That w...

August 1, 2018 10:50 pm

National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson’s mid-year report lays out the issues that she plans to address during the fiscal year ending September 30, 2019 (https://taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/reports/fy-20...

June 28, 2018 9:54 pm

If you want to lose weight, you may be able to take a medical expense deduction for certain costs. Remember that for 2018, medical expenses in excess of 7.5% of adjusted gross income are deductible as...

June 28, 2018 9:51 pm

If you run your business through an S corporation and it produces losses, you can deduct them on your personal return only to the extent of your basis in the S corporation’s stock and debt. When it ...

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Tax Glossary

Inter vivos or lifetime trust

A trust created during the lifetime of the person who created the trust. If irrevocable, income on the trust principal is generally shifted to the trust beneficiaries.

More terms