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Showing content with the highest reputation since 05/18/2019 in all areas

  1. 8 points
    Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. Abraham Lincoln November 19, 1863
  2. 8 points
  3. 7 points
    I've taken my cordless phone into the bathroom more than once.
  4. 7 points
    When I first got into taxes back in 2005 I was on a board like this. Any time a question like this would come up, the same poster would declare something to the impact of "If the client refused to get a full appraisal on every item and didn't deliver it to me in a timely manner, I would immediately fire them." There was usually a part added on about legal liability he had surmised if his demands weren't met. Always wondered if he was trolling or had 2 clients left. Same guy always declared every small business tax return he did had to have a full audit of their accounting by him or he wouldn't sign the return. Somewhere he'd determined that by signing the return we were guaranteeing to the IRS the validity of everything the client provided us.
  5. 7 points
    Bart: If you'd gone to barber school you'd have become an instant tax expert without having to learn all those pesky details of actual return preparation.
  6. 6 points
    Maybe that's the answer. Stop all withholding, and have people make quarterly payments. They may be much more leery about who they send to be their local and federal legis-vermin if they get a quarterly reminder of how much it's all costing them! And WE wouldn't get the questions and complaints about the bleeping W-4 forms and owing and lower refunds and heaven only knows what else. That part would be a win for us!
  7. 6 points
    My client is under OIC consideration. We sent the offer 12/27/18, got the confirmation letter 3/27/19. Letter says they will respond by July 24. This weekend, I get 8 letters for my client saying they are going to levy. While you are under offer consideration, everything is supposed to stop. So I try calling collections. They are too busy to answer the phone. So I call PPS. They tell me they can't see anything on the record that shows we have an offer under consideration and I need to call the OIC folks. I call them and they are too busy to answer the phone. I am so sick and tired of these lazy (fill in the blank) never being able to do their job right. And I don't care if they are overworked or underfunded or any of that other bullcrap they put out there for justification of not doing their job. I don't have time to call them every single day until they decide to pick up the phone. It makes me feel like becoming a tax protester. The IRS SUCKS! SUCKS! SUCKS! SUCKS! SUCKS! SUCKS! SUCKS! Tom Modesto, CA
  8. 6 points
    I still think the IRS definition of "simplify" is different than mine!
  9. 6 points
    Why, certainly not, John. You're too hard on your clients. I sent out several messages, calls/voicemails, a letter, etc. for a client for 1&1/2 months and she finally graced us with a call yesterday (almost didn't answer-thought it was another damned Google telemarketer). Said she'd have called earlier, but "you wouldn't believe" how much trouble they had endured since somebody stole their debit card info, plus Block gouged them horribly last year, plus this, that, and yak-yak-yak. Yes I would because (1) I've had a credit card stolen (2) when they (late-season price shoppers) first came in, hubby said "All I've got is a W-2." Then she drove us crazy for two weeks calling and adding entities/businesses. Then; they vanished for 45 days. I've got more bad news for them; their Block experience is getting a rerun. What a business! I should have (after ruling out brain surgeon) gone to barber school.
  10. 6 points
    I would be remiss if I didn't relate this to all of you. I did get a call from my rep yesterday. While over the last few weeks I was seriously considering going to Drake after a road test because I had a few issues this year, although not so terrible to impact my business. I related those issues to my rep who quite aptly wrote everything down and said all the other reps are referring these concerns to management to improve their product. Yes, I know, what else would he say as a good salesman, but it gave me some comfort that maybe I was helping in some way. I have been with ATX since '96, and can remember joking about the weather in Caribou, so as I could easily move to Drake, it would break my heart....knowing I would miss the easy interface I have become so accustomed to. I even did a Beta test one year that I considered an honor to be included. As John H said, you have to be ready to book.....I was, as I thought their price increase to be out of line, considering what has happened this year. Other than the program problems, the breach could have happened to anyone, their communication with customers was unacceptable and totally inconsiderate. I would never ever do that to my clients. So, with that being said, I told my rep I didn't think the price increase was fair. I said I would not pay more than last year. He then started to negotiate and we agreed on a $48 dollar increase if management would agree. He asked me to hold.....went for a quick smoke and came back and said he got the OK. All in all, being with the company this long, I think it is important that we still support them, there is much of the product we like, and some things we dislike, so we should try to help them bring it back to its original prominence among its peers. I don't want to see them fail, none of us should. They need help, and they are crying out for us to be there for them, they just don't know how to ask or say it.
  11. 6 points
    Yes, definitely a CA NR return. Also, enter the former 2106 deductions as CA does not conform to TCJA and you might have more than the CA standard deduction.
  12. 5 points
    I really need to pee, but I can't take the chance that they will pick up while I am in the bathroom and I miss out and have to start all over again. Tom Modesto, CA
  13. 5 points
    I have an offer number. Someone forgot to enter that information on the client's account. When the number was created, it should have been attached to the account. Seems simple enough to me. OK, someone messed up. But when you call, and they won't take your call, and when you do get to someone, they say they can't help? I could have faxed the official letter to PPS and they could have put a 30 day collection hold on the account while I tried to get to the right person to get them to do their job. If I can't get someone at the OIC office to pick up the phone, I am going to have to go to TAS to get this taken care of. And that will put extra work on TAS, which I guess is where we should start with every attempt to resolve an issue with the IRS. Normal means of dispute resolution are just not working any more. I am going to go play softball tonight and try and work off this frustration. Tom Modesto, CA
  14. 5 points
    Tom, I completely understand your frustration. I hope you or your client mailed the offer via certified mail with a return receipt. Underfunded and understaffed is no excuse for incompetence. It goes beyond comprehension as to how and why the IRS and some States loose documents or claim they never got them. I recently resolved and issue with NC where they claim a form was not included in the return. Totally impossible and I guess it fell off of some examiners desk. But.... they are never wrong and it is always what we or the taxpayer failed to do. Hang in there!
  15. 5 points
    Actually, I think it is horrible (the same as Abby did in his tiff with Medlin: "What? No percentages?") And since they killed off the number of dependents there's nothing left for the average employee to work with. It was hard to get them to fill out a W-4 before and even then they could only because they knew they were single/married and who lived with them. Now the boss gives them five pages of junk and says "Fill this out." I can imagine how that's going to go. People at small employers like a cafe will simply say "I can't do this" and hand it back to the boss who will then bring it to me. Large employers (factories) will require their people to fill it out or be replaced; they'll take it to the payroll clerk there who will say "I can't do this. Take it to your tax person." We'll also get those. As Medlin said, you can make some money out of this, but my God, at what cost? How many hundred people have I seen who are dissatisfied with their withholdings at tax time (and they'll remember who filled out that new form). There's not enough money to compensate us for the ill-will that will be generated amongst clientele when it doesn't work out. When those forms are issued I think I'll either take a vacation or, like the college kids, try to find a "safe space" where I can't be found for a good while.
  16. 5 points
    Folks, please try to keep posts here about this issue with ATX. I've moved two replies into a new pinned topic in the Drake forum for anyone wishing to give a testimonial or helpful advice to those who may want to test out Drake's software. Any future posts will be moved to the Drake or other vendor forums as appropriate. Thanks.
  17. 5 points
    I allocate sales price percentages across all assets, according to their original cost basis percentages.
  18. 5 points
    I don't need to go - we do taxes for a hairdresser in the building and she gave me this hot tip two months ago: HD: Hey; you haven't been giving me my car expenses! BB: Huh? HD: Angie over at Kut 'N' Kurl says her tax guy fixes hers so she doesn't owe much at all; he says all businesses can take off 10,000 miles. BB: No kidding. Who's her tax guy? HD: Actually he's not a tax guy - he works at the transmission factory, but Angie says he's real smart and balances his own checkbook. BB: Well, that nails down his credentials. HD: What? BB: Never mind; how much driving do you do? HD: Well, I drive back and forth from the house every day; and then we go to Memphis for beauty supplies once a year. BB: About the commuting...say, by the way, how far away is home? HD: About a mile that way. BB: Uh-huh. And you go to Memphis to buy supplies? HD: Well, not exactly, but sort of. Once a year me and her and two other girls go to Wolf Chase Mall and the restaurants - can you believe a Margarita is ten dollars at Red Lobster? - and make a day of it. Then we stop at the beauty supply store on the way out of town. BB: And how far is it? HD: A little over 140 miles round trip. BB: So you drive 140 miles every year for that? HD: Not every year. We take turns and that way everybody only has to drive her car every fourth year. BB: Any other driving? HD: Two or three times a year I drive across town for older ladies who can't make it to the shop. Oh, and I did one at the funeral home. BB: Well, you've certainly built a compelling case for car expenses and we'll be sure to take off something for them next time! HD: Thanks so much!
  19. 5 points
    Sometimes, it's hard to create an incorrect return. I go for easy. If the original return is not in my software: Create the return as it should be, as if it's the original return and not an amendment. When I have the return the way it should be, I call up the X forms (I've done this at Block, with ATX, and with ProSystem fx, but ATX was a long time ago). When your software asks you if you want to transfer the data to "Column C," say NO or check/uncheck the box or however your software works to keep your data as amended now. Then you just have to type into "Column A" the amounts from the client's original return and add the explanation. This is often a whole lot easier than trying to recreate your client's original return in your software, especially if he had errors. And, it's easier for me to proofread the return I'm creating as if it's an original return, then turn it into an amendment. I can follow the flow better.
  20. 5 points
    We won't be told, if at all, whether or not our clients' data was compromised until after the 5/31 deadline to renew with discounts !!!
  21. 5 points
    Form 8821 might be more appropriate - the tax pro would receive copies of any notices issued but not be responsible for responding. IMO, form 2848 carries with it representation rights and duties to respond.
  22. 4 points
    Copied from Tax Pro Today: Expired tax breaks Approximately 30 tax breaks that had been given short-term extensions over a number of years expired at the end of 2017. There had been some debate as to whether those tax breaks would continue after the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, but Congress extended them through 2017 in early 2018, resulting in some need to revise software systems and tax forms for the 2017 tax return filing season. Congress is again considering what to do with those expired provisions well after their expiration. The initial proposal had been to extend them retroactively for 2018 and preserve them for 2019. As time passes without enactment, however, the chances increase that many of those expired provisions will not be extended. Another issue that may push some of the tax breaks to the sidelines is that Democrats would prefer that any extension be paid for, but offsetting revenue-raisers appear to be in short supply. Besides a few individual tax breaks, most of the expired provisions relate to energy or to specific industries. Democrats have been working on a more simplified structure for energy tax breaks, focused on renewable energy, and that initiative might replace many of the energy-related expired tax breaks. Lobbying activity continues in an effort to restore a number of these tax breaks, including credits for biodiesel and railroad track maintenance, but, as time passes without action, the number of expired provisions likely to receive retroactive extension, or any extension at all, continues to diminish.
  23. 4 points
    My Dads impression............
  24. 4 points
    Paying with the amended return is the quickest way to stop interest from accruing, so that alone is enough for me to choose that option. Also, I think Murphy's Law will be in full force on the other option, and it won't be as easy as it sounds. That said, I have no experience with trying to get IRS to shift a payment to a prior year, just a strong feeling that it won't go as smoothly as it should, and you'll be wasting time on it in the future.
  25. 4 points
    Just had a terrifying thought: What are 2018 1040Xs going to look like? With all those schedules that somehow total onto the 1040 page 2, where you might change one entry that gets added to three others, how the heck will we explain what changed? Or recognize what changed? One change can trigger changes in NIIT, QBI. SE, a million other things--all neatly added together on this line or that. Is the 1040X going to be six pages long (each with three columns) like the 1040? I used to look at the X line by line to recognize what I had to enter as an explanation and what schedules to attach. Now I might just let the IRS figure it out.
  26. 4 points
    Oh what a relief. Finally. 2 and a half hours for a 5 minute conversation. The guy on the other end was competent and resolved my problem quickly. Blamed it on a computer program not working properly. What else is new. Tom Modesto, CA
  27. 4 points
    2 hours hold time and counting. I think I ought to get a Facebook account and live stream what I do while on hold for the IRS. I bet it would be a big hit. I could get my own YouTube channel and have people watch me play solitaire while holding for the IRS. I am real good at solitaire. Tom Modesto, CA
  28. 4 points
    Hmmmm….I wonder if that will work with my client when they call me and say their account was swept by the IRS? Tom Modesto, CA
  29. 4 points
    I agree since they were made out of generosity and without full and adequate consideration. Also not taxable as prizes, awards.. When a gift is received from employer there can arise the question of wages or bonus. But in this situation the money was clearly given out of generosity and not for compensation.
  30. 4 points
    I see problems with allocating all assets based on original cost. First of all, while the value of the real estate has more than doubled, the value of the other assets have most likely decreased. Because of that, your client will end up with overstated 1245 gains and understated 1250 gains; to his disadvantage. The question is how much is it worth to find the fmv of the personal assets? If an appraisal is not feasible then work with the client to come up with values. I am cautious as an accountant to never put on an appraiser's hat but will use my judgment on what is reasonable.
  31. 4 points
    Because you need relative values, percentages to allocate, can you use the depreciation values, the original cost basis, to compute the percentages? I'd rather have sales values, but I'd rather the client do the research or pay an appraiser! How much will your client pay you? Is it enough to research current FMVs? Do you even have the time without shorting your other clients?
  32. 4 points
    According to Tax Pro Today, the IRS on April 11th quietly expanded their Section 199 A FAQ from 12 to 33 questions and answers: https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/tax-cuts-and-jobs-act-provision-11011-section-199a-qualified-business-income-deduction-faqs There are a few surprises related to S Corps and Partnerships. Putting out additional guidance on April 11th ??? I am truly at a loss for words.
  33. 4 points
    According to the following article in Tax Pro Today, the IRS has announced corrections to Schedule D Worksheet Instructions as of May 16th: https://www.taxprotoday.com/news/irs-fixes-schedule-d-worksheet-that-miscalculated-capital-gains-taxes?feed=00000158-3f5d-dcbd-abf8-ff7f12270000 If your Tax Software followed the prior incorrect worksheet instructions, clients with certain Capital Gain scenarios may have paid more capt\ital gains tax than they really owed! The IRS says they will review the tax returns affected and make corrections ??? The only way I can see using out tax software to analyze the potential changes would be to make a copy of the return and recalculate once our software has updated the corrected Schedule D worksheet calculations ? Just when I was relaxing into my offseason routine
  34. 4 points
    If it was an unknown strain, which was undetectable, how would they even know whether any data was lost ? It's not like someone stole the crown jewels. The data doesn't disappear, the hacker just leaves with a copy of the data.
  35. 3 points
    Guess who just called today when her self prepared return was sent back? Looks like she wants to file MFJ now that we explained why she could not file single, why she would have to pay back the PTC, and why she needed to file a CA return for the wages she earned in CA. She really did not understand that she was getting the PTC, and she really thought that if she moved to another state by the end of the year she would not have to file in CA. How she came to those conclusions I don't know. I think now that she has all the correct information, we can make this right by both of them and then they can go their separate ways after we get the return filed correctly. Tom Modesto, CA
  36. 3 points
    Wow, I was able to lose over +20 lbs by cutting out doughnuts , but thank you anyways.
  37. 3 points
    Not sure about the answers to your specific questions, but how about starting with the 4562? Was there one included with the return? It should have been. Since the business started in 2017, and if the form is filled out, it will show you the assets purchased and available for 179, as well as the breakout of the totals for 3 year, 5 year, 7 year etc. Next, I would ask for the financials for the company for 2017. It might be easier to recreate a return from the original documents (I bet you find errors that can get you an amended fee) than to try and use the limited information you have on the originally prepared return. That is just how I would approach it. Tom Modesto, CA
  38. 3 points
    Tom, if you don't mind paying $49/m for this service, you can get calls through in minutes. I have two friends that can attest to this, besides myself. https://callenq.com There is a free service that will call you back when they get the IRS on the line. It is not as effective as the other. https://gethuman.com/call-back/IRS
  39. 3 points
    Mine has a cord. I am not fancy dancy like that. Hoping this gets resolved soon or I may have a puddle under my chair. Tom Modesto, CA
  40. 3 points
    Look, I know you're just trying to help and thanks for laying it all out for us (obviously you've done a lot of research), but I guess the problem is that many of us don't want to do calculations and become responsible for clients' withholdings. It's like doing the tax return twice; but they won't want to pay you very much for a W-4 form. Of course I'm beating a dead horse here because IRS will do what they want, which is probably to collect more money up front. Software (which I don't want to buy) can make it easier, but it won't absorb the blame when taxpayers give you understated or wrong estimates and owe money in April. We had a perfectly good, simple, and practical W-4 which was the taxpayer's problem - not ours. If short, all they needed to do was write in hold X dollars per week more next time. Now (along with the 1040) it has been blown all to hell - they've created a problem and handed it to us. Maybe the "estimates" will work out; maybe they won't, but clients will have a handy target when they don't. Okay; rant over, but Lion's right - this isn't simplification. It's more in the direction of the ever-expanding 8867 whereby we became IRS' "partners".
  41. 3 points
    The IRS is underfunded, understaffed and probably won't be caught up until sometime next year. It is what it is, work with it.
  42. 3 points
    Lynn, I have not been able to efile 2017 and I am getting very worried. I did renew and did not get a better discount than 10% from my rep. I can't remember his name and will have to look it up. I don't know how other people on FB have been getting larger discounts. My rep was not having any of my reasons, but I did drop down from Total Office to MAX and saved some money. The idea of switching programs when I am trying to count down to getting away from this much stress fills me with dread, but I am really starting to worry about what really happened at WK, since they have pretty much stopped communicating. I am very frustrated that 2017 efile is not back up when many of us still have those returns to file. I guess I would call the regular sales number and tell them that your rep is not returning your messages.
  43. 3 points
    Big or small, they go after everyone. I get phishing emails at least once a day trying to get me to click links or open attachments. The schemers are getting more and more advanced.
  44. 3 points
    The overall combination of hardware and software that makes the internet function is very complex and convoluted. There are so many access points that hackers can attack that's it's not a question of if, but a question when. All we can do is follow good security practices and limit our risk. Actually, our best defense is we are individually small potatoes.
  45. 3 points
    I've met preparers who have all clients sign the POA when they sign the engagement letter every year. And, some that use prior and future years on each form, so a new copy is not needed every year. I have a client sign a POA when needed, but I put prior/future years on the same form. Once in a great while, if a client alerts me to a potential issue, I have them sign a POA while they're here, prophylactically.
  46. 3 points
    I merged the two topics and corrected the date in the title.
  47. 3 points
    Why not have the client ask the prior preparer where the amount came from? On what basis was it put into the tax return? What other schedules in the return does that calculation effect? SE Tax? Pension Deduction? AMT? QBI (or hasn't 2018 return been done yet)?
  48. 3 points
    Exactly. plus when it's a positive adjustment you get a four year forward spread.
  49. 3 points
    Isn't that what Form 3115 does, makes a 481a adjustment in the current year as a positive or negative amount?
  50. 3 points
    My idea for a W4: Enter the % you want withheld (min 8%). You can still claim exempt if you expect your EIC or other credits to zero out your tax. This will help part-timers, especially if their hours vary and sometimes have no tax withheld due to low hours in a pay period. Then everyone will be having a discussion about what % they're having withheld and people will start to understand what their effective tax rate is. And if they're under/over withheld, they can easily increase/decrease the %.
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