If you are a business owner or high-income earner, the sting of last year’s tax bill may still be fresh and you might be very motivated to do something about it now. However, complicating the tax planning calculus for this year is the pending tax reform bill that may or may not pass, and may or may not be retroactive to the beginning of 2017. This raises the question…should any planning be done prior to the tax reform passing or failing?
With the news that the Senate will allow a ratification of tax reform on a simple majority vote, there exists a larger than 50% chance that tax reform will pass this year. Loaded with stress and anxiety? I suppose I should be suffering these ailments as well, but I am not. I suppose I should join many large players are who actively fighting against reform because they fear a simplified tax code will reduce the need for their services. But I won’t. Why?
While we don’t like the IRS, we do like the IRS Streamlined Installment Agreements for those who owe back taxes. Why? Because full financial statements (with supporting documentation) are not needed, which means we don’t have to charge a client nearly as much in order to get into a repayment plan that they can afford. The downside? Unfortunately, there’s a few that we can think of. But first — the upside.
A recent case in the Third Circuit, Arthur Bedrosian v. United States of America, resulted in a huge win for the taxpayer. Yet it was another loss, after Pomerantz and Hom, for the government, which the court ruled failed to meet the burden for proving a willful FBAR penalty violation. After the entire findings of fact and conclusions of law follows this analysis.