Why Are Taxes So Complex?
Jay explains the difficulties that impede passage of tax simplification legislation.
Do Tax Returns Matter In Presidential Elections?
Learn the history of tax return publicity by presidents and other politicians.
Linux for CPAs
Linux is a powerful superior computer operating system that can be used in a tax practice.
Debunking Fair Share
Just what is meant by fair share?
Many Unhappy ReturnsMillions of Them.
Reprinted from The Wall Street Journal. 2013 is the 100th anniversary of the 16th Amendment which authorized an income tax. Here's how it got started.
Efiling and the Explosion in Tax-Return Fraud.
Reprinted from The Wall Street Journal. Identity-theft cases rocketed to 1.1 million in 2011 from 51,700 in 2008. The IRS has a backlog of 650,000.
Practice Safe Efiling.
Reprinted from The Journal of Accountancy. A checklist for tax preparers to protect their clients when efiling.
The Case Against Efiling.
Efiling makes possible more complex tax laws, as well as raising audit risk, compliance costs, and penalties. It encourages cheating so extensive that tax fraud is now the third largest theft of federal funds. Tax identity theft is largely perpetrated by efiling. Jay's article has tips on enlisting IRS to help try protect yourself against becoming a victim. Here's the efiling story IRS won't advertise and the media has not reported.
Mitt Romney and his Carried Interest Tax Shelter
How does Mitt Romney manage to pay income tax at just 15 percent?
Taxation for Prosperity.
Monetary policy is mired in a liquidity trap. Keynesian stimulus spending has proven ineffective. We faced much gloomier prospects following World War II. Good tax policy was a major part of the formula that brought us prosperity then. It's time to invoke taxation for prosperity again.
The Debate Over Oil and Mineral Taxes
Republicans are seriously considering repealing ethanol tax credits. Democrats complain about the 10 tax benefits for oil companies. There is a misguided 100-year history to this haphazard energy and mineral tax policy that is revealed in "The Debate Over Oil and Mineral Taxes."
In Memoriam: Martin D. Ginsburg
Martin D. Ginsburg died on June 27, 2010. He was reknown as the best tax lawyer in Washington and as husband of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Can An Estate Tax Be Retroactive?
The estate tax expired on January 1, 2010. Congress reinstated it on December 17, 2010, retroactive to January 1, 2010, affecting the tax liability of estates of people who died before the law was enacted. Is a retroactive tax law constitutional? Find out by reading "Can An Estate Tax Be Retroactive?"
IRS to Delete First Five SSN Digits on Form 1099
Tax Provisions In Health Care Reform
You've heard bits and pieces about health care reform. Here you can read about the House and Senate provisions. Many of the tax provisions will shock and surprise you. There's a highly controversial provision for gay tax benefits. Your tax returns will lose confidentiality. And forget about tax simplification — ever! Here's the best place to read about the Tax Provisions In Health Care Reform. The article includes links to the 2,019-page House version and the 2,410-page Senate version.
Applying for a Private Letter Ruling
The New Tax On Students
Most students under age 24 are now taxed on investment income at their parents' tax rate. Complying with this law allows the student to obtain the parents' tax return information directly from IRS. That could make for some interesting allowance negotiations. Learn how in The New Tax On Students.
Presidents and the First Book
Jimmy Carter, Laura Bush, Barack Obama, and Hillary and Bill Clinton have all written books. And they all appear to have overpaid taxes on the royalties. The lesson on why they overpaid may apply to all amateur new authors, as explained in Presidents and the First Book.
Preaching Tax Compliance
All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena, California allowed a political sermon -- which brought on the wrath of IRS. Find out how the church won in Preaching Tax Compliance.
Tax Simplification: Just Get Rid of 89 Million Unnecessary Returns
Advantages of a C Corporation
When should you select a C corporation over an LLC, S corporation, or other entity? Jay has some suggestions on the Advantages of a C Corporation.