The deal President Obama has struck for extending the Bush tax cuts may be provoking controversy, but it also has some attractive components for both individuals and businesses.
Among them is the 2 percent reduction in the Social Security payroll tax, which temporarily cuts the withholding from 6.2 to 4.2 percent.
“The 2 percent reduction will provide a broader reduction than the Making Work Pay tax credit,” said Rick Rodenbeck, a tax practice leader at CBIZ MHM LLC. “That was only a $400 reduction and phased out at $75,000 a year. For a family with two spouses making $50,000 each, that will be an extra $2,000 that they will be taking home, which otherwise would have been phased out. Certainly two-income families will see a significant benefit from that.”
The extension of the Research & Experimentation tax credit should also provide a boost for businesses. The credit has already expired, but Rodenbeck believes it will be made retroactive for 2010. However, he doubts the new estate tax rate of 35 percent will be made retroactive for this year, when it was zero.
Whatever happens with the tax cuts deal, the details ultimately will be up to Congress. “They’ll have to get it back to the tax-writing committees to see how things are implemented,” said Rodenbeck.