Feb 242012
 
The IRS Has 1 Billion In Uncollected Refunds From 2008; Walk, Don't Run, To Claim Yours

The IRS has announced that it is holding funds, totaling more than $1 billion, that are awaiting a claim from the more than one million people who did not file a federal income tax return in 2008.  In order to collect their refund, taxpayers who have not yet done so must file an income tax return for 2008, no later than Tuesday, April 17, 2012. While this announcement from the IRS is certainly informative, like most statements from the tax collector, it must be taken with a grain of salt.  In the release, the IRS is quick to point out More…

Feb 172012
 
IRS Releases 2012 List Of The  “Dirty Dozen” Tax Scams

Once again, tax season is upon us and the IRS has issued the annual “dirty dozen” tax scams. Topping this year’s list is identity theft.  In response to growing identity theft concerns, the IRS has declared its intent to embark on a comprehensive strategy that is focused on preventing, detecting and resolving identity theft cases as soon as possible.  In addition to the law-enforcement crackdown, the IRS has stepped up its internal reviews to spot false tax returns before tax refunds are issued and has been working to help victims of the identity theft refund schemes. The entire list is More…

Feb 142012
 
Examining The Tax Consequences Of Whitney Houston’s Death

On February 11, 2012, artist Whitney Houston was found dead in her suite at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, in Beverly Hills, California, submerged in the bathtub.  At this time, the cause of death is not known, although prescription drug abuse has been speculated. So what can be expected tax-wise, following her death?  Two important concerns may be the estate tax, as well as the issue of income in respect of a decedent. Currently, the estate tax rate is 35% and applies only to estates worth more than $5 million (or $10 million for couples).  Perhaps as famous as her singing More…

Feb 022012
 
Citibank Airline Miles Fiasco Illustrates The Difficulty In Determining “Taxable Income”

It’s tax season, which means our mailboxes are filling up with W-2s, 1099s and other tax forms provided to the IRS in order to enlighten them as to just how much income we will have to declare.  We are trained to expect these statements from employers, banks, and brokerage houses, but now it seems that Citibank customers may have an extra surprise in store for them this year.  Citibank is sending 1099-MISC forms to customers who received thousands of “free” airline miles in return for opening a new account and is notifying the Internal Revenue Service that these miles represent More…