Highlights of some of our favorite tax-related blogs from the past week.

The zeroes are in

  • Tax Analysts: When is zero a whole lot? When it’s what you pay in taxes and you’re running for office – and not just in this wacky year.
  • Tax Policy: Candidates’ proposed tax plans get a washing from the Penn Wharton budget model project’s macroeconomic analysis. Results pend, but so far it’s safe to say that under the Penn Wharton assumptions, the Clinton plan is initially a drag on growth during the budget window but ultimately increases growth; the Trump plan is a boost to growth in early years, followed by a longer-run reduction in growth that begins to materialize towards the end of the ten-year budget window.
  • Tax Vox: Surprise, Surprise Dept.: Clinton and Trump advisors display wide differences in tax policy debate, as shown in a recent Tax Policy Center discussion featuring representatives of each campaign.
  • Taxable Talk: Amid all the hubbub of Trump releasing or not releasing his tax returns, few thought to wonder what the disclosure rules are regarding his former and now retired accountant. This entry also opens with a very real-life (though hypothetical) scenario you might identify with.

Cookie jars

  • IRS Tax Trouble: A recent case examines the dog-and-homework version of tax compliance. In other words, what happens when a taxpayer claims she did file a return and the IRS begs to differ.
  • Tax Girl: Various family members (including a former congressman) with their hands in the cookie jar that was the School District of Philadelphia.
  • The Tax Times: Why stop with the scores (144) of offshore banks and now financial advisors turning over names to the IRS? Just skip to the chase and make the whole world surrender names.
  • Don’t Mess With Taxes: Eighty-five years ago this week Capone got nailed not for murder, extortion, robbery or a host of other crimes, but, as everyone in the industry knows and swells with pride about, tax evasion. The date of his conviction was also this year’s deadline for filing extended returns. Pure coincidence.

Come she will

  • The Income Tax School: Forget the holidays: April is the one right around the corner. A dozen tips to prepare for tax season, from preparing an office policy manual (“How should the telephone be answered? How should tax returns be priced?”) to preparer employment agreements and preparer compensation. Don’t forget to hit Costco for the big pack of Excedrin.
  • ClientWhys: Presenting the sobering A-B-G’s of your marketing: “Always Be Growing.” Consider that your average practice of 350 clients loses 7 percent per year, you need to replace 25 clients annually to break even. “Do nothing and your practice will be below 300 clients in just a few years ...”
  • Solutions for CPA Firm Leaders: The new Department of Labor ruling that changed the overtime rules under the FLSA (effective date now looms on Dec. 1), what do you have to think about when converting a salaried staffer to hourly? Note: Blogger Rita Keller has “heard and read, over and over again, that many people truly feel like it is a demotion.”

Intrigues

  • Mauled Again: Among his other wrangles, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s exploration of ending income tax reciprocity between his state and Pennsylvania, done amid handing out tax breaks to companies enticed to move to New Jersey, has hit a snag. In short, “today’s promise becomes tomorrow’s breach.”
  • Rubin on Tax: Intriguing case of an estate executor losing out on fees due to Sec. 6166 lien.

What to tell them

  • Summing It Up: What to tell them about how to prepare for that first business meeting to explore possibly securing the R&D Tax Credit.
  • Backtaxeshelp: “Could Your Passport Be in Jeopardy If You Owe Back Taxes?” Until a few months ago, there was little connection. Now, you may advise clients, not so much.
  • TaxProCenter: Our planet is shrinking all the time, and going global is no longer just for big companies. Your small-company clients may also be eying the global opportunity – and ignoring the potentially big tax risks.
  • Turbotax: What to tell your freshly self-employed clients about cash basis eligibility. Perhaps an especially timely topic given the blossoming of Uber, Lyft and the like.
  • IRS Problem Solver Blog: In what this blogger terms “one of those rare moments where the government utilizes good foresight,” the IRS Fresh Start Initiative truly does help the struggling who owe back taxes. A look at the program’s pluses.