Voices

In the blogs: Great unknowns

Reform and the classroom; RALs this season; love and brackets; and other highlights from our favorite tax bloggers.

Great unknowns

  • TaxProf Blog (http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/): Confusing as reform has sometimes been to practitioners, imagine having to teach it. A reflection on the sudden scramble of teaching tax law “in a semester when all textbooks and statutory supplements were outdated.”
  • IRS Mind (https://www.irsmind.com/): A Face on the Fears Dept.: A look at IRS penalty rates, common penalties and what it will actually cost your client for noncompliance.
  • Tax Foundation (https://taxfoundation.org/blog): If countries turn to Europe for models of corporate income tax rates, they’re likely to come away confused: Rates range from 9 percent in Hungary to 34.4 percent in France. Europe’s average CIT rate (22.5 percent) is slightly higher than the global average. Here’s a breakdown nation by nation.
  • Intuit Proconnect (https://proconnect.intuit.com/taxprocenter/): Another look at IRS Pub. 535 and its long-awaited details around qualified business income.
  • John R. Dundon II EA (http://johnrdundon.com/): Perturbing new treatment of patents under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which removed patents from the definition of “capital asset.” Also excluded: inventions, models or designs (whether or not patented), and secret formulas or processes that are held by the inventor/creator.
  • Tax Girl (https://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyphillipserb): RALs keep bumping along despite what seem like annual attacks on their details, if not outright character. What happens to them in a season like this one, when new tax rules and the shutdown-related delays have taxpayers on edge about when they might see their checks?

Let me re-count the ways

  • Don’t Mess with Taxes (http://dontmesswithtaxes.typepad.com/): Our favorite opening of the week: “It’s fitting that Valentine's Day…comes during tax filing season...” Jury’s out on that, but beware the next line: “While most of us marry for love, finances and the related taxes are a big part of our coupled relationships.” It’s 25 years for us pinballing through matrimony come the end of this month, and we see the point. Five love-and-taxes considerations.
  • Liberty Tax (http://www.libertytax.com/tax-lounge): Most Americans are fully aware that getting married will have a profound impact on their lives in a large number of ways. (Did we mention 25 years?) An additional look, from changing names and filing statuses through the sudden surprise of new brackets with joint filing.
  • Bloomberg BNA (https://www.bna.com/news/#!topic=tax&type=blogpost&page=1): And not too long after, sometimes, comes the weighty carriage: “Baby in a Blended Family” examines a complicated and increasingly common estate-planning recipe. In this case, when reality TV Ashley Darby of “The Real Housewives of the Potomac” announced her pregnancy.
  • Taxjar (http://blog.taxjar.com/): February sales tax due dates, in order of state.

Arguably

  • Tax Vox (https://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxvox): Three arguments regarding why Congress should request the president’s tax returns (as well as those of vice presidents and candidates for these offices).
  • Mauled Again (http://mauledagain.blogspot.com/): Misconceptions in the debate over Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s 70-percent whack on the rich, including the claim that “Ocasio-Cortez ‘wants 70 percent...of your production.’ That simply is not what she has proposed...”
  • Rubin on Tax (http://rubinontax.floridatax.com/): How a recent state-level case addressed whether owners who had to cease living on homestead property by reason of a court order (unsafe conditions and code violations) should automatically be treated as having abandoned their homestead.
  • Procedurally Taxing (http://procedurallytaxing.com/): Can’t argue with this: “It’s never a good thing for your spouse to be the subject of a $2,165,126 restitution order.” You know when that comes out in the first few sentences of an opinion that things do not look good for the non-liable spouse. A look at United States v. Berry, which presents “the not-always available situation of a wayward party who still has assets after a criminal prosecution.”