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

Plan, baby, plan

  • Tax Girl: No doubt your clients will soon roll in with great ideas on how they can save taxes, such as stock harvesting or prepaying a mortgage. The real skinny on what to tell them.
  • Taxes at About.com: “A First Look at ABLE Savings Accounts” examines the new provision in the recently enacted Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014 to offer a tax-advantaged, safe way to accumulate savings for people who became blind or disabled before age 26. Also, onward with the qualified charitable distribution provision of the act.
  • The Wandering Tax Pro: Another look at the QCD, boon for both those getting on in years and charities needing help.
  • The Tax Times: What to think about in clients’ time remaining regarding the recently passed extenders bill.

Devils and details

  • Roth & Co.: Prepaying state and local taxes is a venerable year-end tax planning move for your clients. Too bad the AMT can also render it a costly one, in some circumstances, over a given two years.
  • Our Taxing Times: A state-specific look at itemized deductions for Kansas this year. Note the “major change” and increase on the haircut for most itemized deductions.
  • Tax Litigation Survey: A look at big takeaways from Belk v. Commissioner, in which the Fourth Circuit Court held that a conservation easement containing a substitution provision (which allowed for substitution of the land subject to the easement) did not constitute a qualified real property interest and the taxpayers did not qualify for a charitable contribution deduction.

Go phish

  • Musings of a Burbank CPA: The Better Business Bureau of West Virginia now calls the recent IRS telephone con the biggest scam of the year. Just proves what can happen when you apply yourself.
  • Don’t Mess With TaxesSpammers, scammers and phishers know no bounds in this most wonderful time of the year. Lest you doubt, this comes direct from the Secretary of the Treasury. So you’re to believe.
  • Due Diligence: Are there no prisons? In this week’s roundup: “Medicare Fraud Lands Doc in Prison”; “Accounting Malpractice and Tax Fraud Scheme Leads to Prison”; “Small Pennsylvania Hospital Settles Whistleblower Medicare Suit”; “Illinois Man Heads to Prison for Tax Evasion”; “There is a New Sheriff in Town, Actually Several”; “False Claims Act – Time for Reform?”; “Draw Near Sinners and Tax Collectors”; “Annuity Flipping”; and “Ex-Billionaire In Jail … for Contempt.”

On the horizon

  • Bond Beebe’s It’s Taxing: Our next contestant on Your April Headache: The ACA’s Shared Responsibility Provision. Come on down!
  • Solutions for CPA Firm Leaders: Start your 2015 with “Inspiring Quotes for CPA Leaders.” Tack them up on your walls. Memorize them. Keep them handy in the coming season…

Miles to go

  • Backtaxeshelp: The latest IRS increases to standard mileage rates for 2015.
  • Taxable Talk: The above, by the numbers. Plus, final reminder to submit nominations for the Tax Offender of the Year and a look at last years’ winners. Looks like Congress continues to beat Voldemort.
  • John R. Dundon II blog: 2014 depreciation limits on luxury autos.

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