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

Tricky questions

  • Tax, Society & Culture: A look at the new Model Income Tax Treaty (“Now With Kill-Switches!”). It’s the baseline text the Treasury Department uses when it negotiates tax treaties, last updated a decade ago and that now includes provisions intended to “eliminate double taxation without creating opportunities for non-taxation or reduced taxation through tax evasion or avoidance.”
  • BNA Bloomberg Software: Do high state income tax rates always drive businesses away? A look at a Los Angeles Times report on Tesla Motors, which will receive $39 million in sales tax incentives from California – a state the electric car maker has elected to remain in despite a relatively high corporate income tax rate.
  • Tax Vox: The trickiness of finding consensus on exactly how much presidential candidates’ tax proposals would cost. Also, a Google tax pinball through the Netherlands and Ireland, plus the insurance traffic snarl in Michigan over what many call an accidental tax break.
  • Mauled Again: Not all harm is created equal. A look at a recent case that drives home that damages for emotional distress are gross income after a USPS letter carrier was injured in a vehicle accident on the job.

Seasonal wrinkles

  • The Income Tax School: The annual nagging question: How do you get more clients through your door? Here are three tips.
  • Taxes at About.com: Everything’s in perfect order with the client except one small number on the return: “What if Someone Else Claimed Your Child as a Dependent?” looks at, first, how hard it is to find who did the claiming.
  • Tax Policy: Just what percentage of your clients – and in what income brackets – are likely to itemize?
  • Solutions For CPA Firm Leaders: The dangers of letting the Careers page of your Web site wither.
  • Federal Tax Crimes: Can’t Trust a Tentmate Dept.: Recommended to readers of this blog is a recent NPR Planet Money podcast on a tax protestor. One of our favorite lines of the week: “Larry Williams, an admitted risk taker, allegedly received bad advice from a camping buddy lawyer.”

FIRPTA consideration

  • The Tax Times: The FIRPTA free ride (more or less) screeched to a halt on February 15.
  • Rubin on Tax: Another look at the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 modifying withholding provisions under FIRPTA; specifically: the increase of the withholding rate on dispositions of U.S. real property interests from 10 percent to 15 percent; implementation of a new reduced 10 percent rate of withholding; and eliminating from the cleansing rule corporations that are or were formerly regulated investment companies or real estate investment trusts, among other points.

Dog daze

  • Due Diligence: In this week’s collection: “Seeking Freedom Mortgage Insiders & Borrowers”; “Hospice Care – The New False Claims Act Frontier”; ““Even a Dog Can Get a Mortgage”’ and  “N.J. Doc Pays $5.25 Million to Settle Qui Tam Complaint.”
  • BNA blogs: Hedge Up: FASB plans to issue a new standard revising hedge accounting during the first half of next year and plans to issue an exposure draft in the first quarter of this one.

Letters of import

  • Taxing Subjects: Been a long time since three little letters – ACA – had such an impact on tax prep. How the health care act continues to affect tax professionals and tax law. “Despite the surrounding controversy, the ACA has proven litigiously and politically resilient.”
  • Tax Analysts: Blogger Jeremy Scott examines the suddenly very real BFD that the U.K. might pull out of the EU. Note: “A British exit from Europe would have major repercussions on trade and immigration policy, but its effect on tax would be much more significant if there were a Labour government.”

Nerd out

  • John R. Dundon II EA: Opening of the week, by a long stretch: “Being married to a fermentation biologist has allowed me access to a wide swath of fascinating experiments involving media from bio-fuels to home brew. So no matter how many esoteric Internal Revenue Codes I vamp up in public or in social gatherings … I can never out-nerd the love of my life.”
  • Taxjar: A work-in-progress list of sales tax myths. Feel free to kick in your own.

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