In the blogs: Size matters

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The smaller 1040; Wayfair wrinkles; no do-over on fraudulent returns; and other highlights from our favorite tax bloggers.

Size matters

  • TaxBuzz (https://www.taxbuzz.com/blog): There are a lot of good reasons to purchase a solar power system for your house, but one of the most frequently cited reasons may actually be the least valid: the solar tax credit, which by nature may only be useful to those who have a significant tax liability after deductions and write-offs.
  • Don’t Mess With Taxes (http://dontmesswithtaxes.typepad.com/): Bigger Will Not Have Been Better Dept.: A look at the long-promised paring down of Form 1040.
  • The Wandering Tax Pro (http://wanderingtaxpro.blogspot.com/): As home-equity interest is no longer deductible as an itemized deduction (“Period”), why we need a new 1098 for mortgage interest.
  • Turbotax (https://blog.turbotax.intuit.com): Many of your clients probably really just think of their refund after it arrives. Here are ideas to get them working on now to boost those bucks a year from now.
  • Solutions for CPA Firm Leaders (http://ritakeller.com/blog/): The gulf between the written and the spoken extends even into accounting practices. Use care, especially when talking to clients and new hires, that you answer questions in a way that is easily understandable for people not familiar with life inside a CPA firm. Additional note: “So much is conveyed these days in writing. Email is our main form of communication with clients, business associates, and employees. I see firsthand that many CPAs rank poorly with grammar and spelling.”
  • Boyum and Barenscheer (https://myboyum.com/blog/): Our favorite opening of the week: “Funny thing about customers: They can keep you in business — but they can also put you out of it.” A look at running the numbers before your biz clients (or you) extend customer credit.

The Wayfairest of them all

  • Rubin on Tax (http://rubinontax.floridatax.com): Despite Wayfair, it’s likely that not all internet/web sales into a state will be subject to state and local sales taxes.
  • Taxable Talk (http://www.taxabletalk.com/): And what does Wayfair mean for income tax and economic nexus?
  • Tax Girl (http://blogs.forbes.com/kellyphillipserb): Online retailers took in more than $409 billion in sales last year — a sum expected to only grow past a half-trillion bucks by next year. “With those kinds of dollars, it’s no wonder that state and local governments have become more aggressive in the crush to collect sales and use taxes on online purchases.”

Streams come true

  • Tax Vox (http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxvox): District of Columbia residents are getting the last tranche of a phased-in tax cut that was enacted in 2014. But because the relief was based on linking key provisions of the district’s income tax to the federal code, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has scrambled the expected changes — even to the point of making a cut a hike.
  • Avalara (https://www1.avalara.com/us/en/blog.html): Tax changes to those movies we watch on our devices are slowly becoming sweet streams for those who want to levy the likes on our Netflix. A look at Chicago’s recently becoming the first city of size to tax online streaming services and how the Québec Economic Plan provides for “the implementation of measures making the collection of the Quebec sales tax mandatory on digital services and incorporeal property sold from outside Quebec.”
  • Bloomberg BNA (https://www.bna.com/news/#!topic=tax&type=blogpost&page=1): Colorado has become the latest state to adopt market-based sourcing rules for corporate income taxpayers apportioning income to the state. The new law substantially follows the Multistate Tax Commission’s model statute for market-based sourcing, but it remains to be seen how closely Colorado adheres to the MTC’s model regulations.
  • Tax Foundation (https://taxfoundation.org/blog): California’s SALT Deduction Cap Workaround is legally dubious and needlessly regressive, according to recent testimony for the state’s assembly committee on revenue and taxation. Analysis also indicates that under the new federal law, California taxpayers will see a tax cut, often a significant one, across the income spectrum and in every single congressional district in the state.

Knock, knock

  • Mauled Again (http://mauledagain.blogspot.com/): The recent Gaskin v. Comr. reminds everyone that once the fraudulent return has been filed, there is no reset button.
  • Federal Tax Crimes (http://federaltaxcrimes.blogspot.com/): Where to view the contents of the Quinnipiac University School of Law’s recent annual Criminal Tax Day (not a how-to, by the way). Topics included income reconstruction, undocumented workers and “Taxpayer vs. Preparer: Who to Pursue?”
  • H&R Block (https://www.hrblock.com/tax-center/): What to remind them about how the IRS may actually visit a client in the home, and why.
  • TaxProf Blog (http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/): A look at “a fascinating and thought-provoking essay” on the logic of statutory interpretation, specifically as it applies to the IRC.
  • National Taxpayer Advocate (https://taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/about/nta-blog): The gig economy comes with a lot of uncertainty: hours, insurance, steady income. The IRS isn’t cutting through the fog much with tax guidance, either. An overview of the supposedly mushrooming market segment and, first working definitions for terms that are often used while describing sharing economy transactions.
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