[OSSSA218] Fwd: IRS Event Updates and Headliners for January
karen.park at state.or.us
Tue Jan 18 15:28:45 PST 2011
>>> "Marshall KayDel D" <KayDel.Marshall at irs.gov> 1/18/2011 2:55 PM
Dear Business Organization:
Here are the latest IRS News Releases and Headliners to distribute to
your small business members. I hope that the information will be
helpful and we encourage publication in your association's magazines,
newsletters, email distributions and/or website.
Below are summaries and links to the most recent headliners and news
releases your members might be interested in. The title and summary are
designed to give you a brief overview of the article's content -- the
link to the full article is at the end of each summary. I encourage you
to use any or all of these in newsletters or emails to your members, or
on your web site.
For the nextseveral months, I may only be sporadically available. If
you need immediate assistance with anything while I am gone, please
contact , Donna Wagner, my Management Assistant in Seattle at
206-220-5590 for referrals to my local colleagues; either John Blakeman
or Brian Wozniak, whomever is available to help you. If you leave a
message on the phone number below, I may not get back to you right away,
but, I WILL get back to you.
If someone else in your organization is a more appropriate contact
point for these types of emails, please let me know. And if you do not
want to receive future emails like this one, please reply and request
your name be removed.
Senior Stakeholder Liaison
Small Business & Self-Employed C/L/D
100 S.W. Main Street, Suite 1200
Portland, Oregon 97204
E-Mail: KayDel.Marshall at irs.gov
Announcements & Upcoming Events:
January 25, 2011 - Oregon Small Business Forum The next Oregon Small
Business Forum has been scheduled for Tuesday, January 25, 2011 from
8:00 a.m. to Noon at the Oregon Association for Minority Entrepreneurs
offices at 4134 N. Vancouver, Portland, Oregon. The Focus Area Topic
selected by participants for this forum is "Marketing Your Business -
What's Hot/What's Not and How to Reach your Targeted Customers to
Increase Sales" There are several great speakers on the marketing
topic offering valuable information to disseminate to those small
businesses you serve. Topics covered include International Marketing to
Overseas Customers, Marketing to the Government, Web Site Optimization,
Social Media Marketing, and Effective Research to Market Your Business.
Networking at the forum can result in joint projects, partnerships, and
new small business outreach opportunities. The Informal Roundtable
following the Marketing topic allows everyone present to explain what
they have to offer small business to enhance the success of small
business in Oregon.
Free IRS Webinar: Getting Ready for Filing Season 2011 – Individuals
Jan 26 -- 11am Pacific Time; noon Mountain Time
Learn about issues affecting 2010 individual and business tax returns
on the Jan. 26 broadcast of IRS Live (
Free IRS Webinar: Small Business Health Care Tax Credit
Feb. 2 -- 11 a.m. – noon Pacific
This FREE webinar is for tax professionals, attorneys, payroll
professionals and small businesses.
§ Amount of Small Business Health Care Tax Credit
§ Who qualifies
§ Eligibility rules
§ How to claim the credit
§ Calculating the credit
§ Resources available
IRS and Telemundo Host Tax Information Program in Spanish
The Internal Revenue Service is joining national TV network Telemundo
in a special one-hour tax program for Spanish-speaking taxpayers on
Sunday, Jan. 30.
The program “Los Impuestos y Usted” (“Taxes and You”) will air at 1:30
p.m. Mountain time or 1:00 p.m. Pacific time. Check your local listings
for exact times.
“Los Impuestos y Usted” will help viewers determine whether they
qualify for many tax benefits, including the Earned Income Tax Credit or
EITC. Workers who earned $48,362 or less from wages, self-employment or
farming last year could receive larger refunds if they qualify to
receive EITC. Among other topics, the program features Free File, a
program that allows individuals to file their taxes online at no cost,
how to get free tax help at local community centers and other services
available at www.irs.gov/espanol. Mónica Noguera, host for many of
Telemundo’s specials, will present the IRS program, which features
in-studio interviews with IRS tax experts. IRS tax experts will also be
available during the airing of the program to answer questions submitted
online via Telemundo’s website.
Small Business Law Center Open House, Thursday, February 10, 5:00 to
8:00 p.m..310 S.W. 4th, Suite 1000, Portland. Reply by February 7 to
Becka Martinez Griffin rcmg at lclarkor 503‐768‐6940
Oregon Small Business Fair, September 24, 2011, Ambridge Event Center,
1333 NE MLK Blvd, Portland, Oregon 97232. NOTE: Venue has changed/No
longer at Oregon Convention Center. For exhibitor or other
information, contact Linda.E.Repp at state.or.us (
BLOCKED::mailto:Linda.E.Repp at state.or.us ). Thursday, February 10,
5:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Mercy Corps Northwest has several small business trainings coming up.
Check at it out at:
Updated Beauty Shops Audit Technique Guide on IRS.govThe updated Beauty
Shops Audit Technique Guide is now available as Chapter 10 (
the Cash Intensive Businesses Audit Techniques Guide (
the IRS.gov Audit Technique Guide Webpage (
Treasury Launches Pilot Program of Prepaid Debit and Payroll Cards for
Fast, Safe and Convenient Tax Refunds
Timed for tax season, the U.S. Department of the Treasury has launched
a pilot to offer taxpayers a safe, convenient and low-cost financial
account for the electronic delivery of their federal tax refunds. The
new account card option provides everyday money-saving conveniences and
consumer protection features for Americans with limited or no access to
traditional banking services. As the next step in this pilot, originally
announced in September, Treasury will mail letters next week to 600,000
low- and moderate-income individuals nationwide. More information about
MyAccountCard can be found at www.myaccountcard.gov (
IRS Updates & News Releases:
Free File Brand-Name Software and Online Forms Available Today
IRS Free File began Jan. 14, to start its ninth year of helping make
taxes a little less taxing. Everyone can use Free File, the free way to
prepare and e-file federal taxes either through brand-name software or
online fillable forms. Individuals or families with 2010 adjusted gross
incomes of $58,000 or less can use Free File software. Free File
Fillable Forms, the electronic version of IRS paper forms, has no income
restrictions. Free File software is a product of a public-private
partnership between the IRS and the Free File Alliance, LLC. The
Alliance is a consortium of approximately 20 tax software providers who
make versions of their products available exclusive at
www.irs.gov/freefile. All Free File members must meet certain
security requirements and use the latest in encryption technology to
protect taxpayers’ information. Seventy percent of taxpayers are
eligible for Free File software. It’s perfect for first-time filers,
families looking to save money or older Americans adept at using the
Internet. Each of the Free File software providers sets their own
eligibility requirements, usually based on qualifiers such as income,
state residency, age or military status.
Videos: Free File 2011: English (
) | Spanish (
) | ASL
)Sandwich Generation: English
)1040-EZ: English (
Spread the word about Free File (
IRS e-file Launches Today; Most Taxpayers Can File Immediately
Video: e-File 2011: English (
) | Spanish (
) | ASL
)The Internal Revenue Service has opened its 21st season of electronic
filing with a reminder to taxpayers that e-file remains the best way to
get fast refunds and ensure accurate tax returns, particularly following
several tax law changes in December. IRS e-file (
http://www.irs.gov/efile/index.html ) is approaching the milestone of
1 billion returns processed. The electronic transmission system, which
has revolutionized the way the IRS processes tax returns and made speedy
refunds possible, has safely and securely processed 892 million tax
returns since its national debut in 1990. In 2010, nearly 100 million
people - 70 percent of the taxpayers - used IRS e-file.
Tax Season Starts on Time for Most Taxpayers; Those Affected by Late
Tax Breaks Can File in Mid- to Late February
Taxpayers affected by three recently reinstated deductions need to wait
until mid- to late February to file their individual tax returns. In
addition, taxpayers who itemize deductions on Form 1040 Schedule A will
need to wait until mid- to late February to file as well. The start of
the 2011 filing season will begin in January for the majority of
taxpayers. However, last week’s changes in the law mean that the IRS
will need to reprogram its processing systems for three provisions that
were extended in the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization
and Job Creation Act of 2010 that became law on Dec. 17. People claiming
any of these three items — involving the state and local sales tax
deduction, higher education tuition and fees deduction and educator
expenses deduction as well as those taxpayers who itemize deductions on
Form 1040 Schedule A — will need to wait to file their tax returns until
tax processing systems are ready, which the IRS estimates will be in
mid- to late February.
IRS Tax Tip: Points to Keep in Mind When Choosing a Tax Preparer
If you pay someone to prepare your tax return, the IRS urges you to
choose that preparer wisely. Taxpayers are legally responsible for
what’s on their tax return even if it is prepared by someone else.
So, it is important to choose carefully when hiring an individual or
firm to prepare your return. Most return preparers are professional,
honest and provide excellent service to their clients. See the full
article for a few points to keep in mind when choosing someone else to
prepare your return.
You can find more Tax Tips for 2011 at
http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/content/0,,id=104608,00.html or you may
Subscribe to Tax Tips (
In 2011, Many Tax Benefits Increase Slightly Due to Inflation
In 2011, personal exemptions and standard deductions will rise and tax
brackets will widen due to inflation. These inflation adjustments relate
to eight tax provisions that were either modified or extended by the Tax
Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of
2010 that became law on Dec. 17. New dollar amounts affecting 2011
returns, filed by most taxpayers in early 2012, include the following:
§ The value of each personal and dependent exemption, available
to most taxpayers, is $3,700, up $50 from 2010.
§ The new standard deduction is $11,600 for married couples
filing a joint return, up $200, $5,800 for singles and married
individuals filing separately, up $100, and $8,500 for heads of
household, also up $100. The additional standard deduction for blind
people and senior citizens is $1,150 for married individuals, up $50,
and $1,450 for singles and heads of household, also up $50. Nearly two
out of three taxpayers take the standard deduction, rather than
itemizing deductions, such as mortgage interest, charitable
contributions and state and local taxes.
§ Tax-bracket thresholds increase for each filing status. For a
married couple filing a joint return, for example, the taxable-income
threshold separating the 15-percent bracket from the 25-percent bracket
is $69,000, up from $68,000 in 2010.
§ The maximum earned income tax credit (EITC) for low- and
moderate- income workers and working families rises to $5,751, up from
$5,666 in 2010. The maximum income limit for the EITC rises to $49,078,
up from $48,362 in 2010.The credit varies by family size, filing status
and other factors, with the maximum credit going to joint filers with
three or more qualifying children.
§ The modified adjusted gross income threshold at which the
lifetime learning credit begins to phase out is $102,000 for joint
filers, up from $100,000, and $51,000 for singles and heads of
household, up from $50,000.
Several tax benefits are unchanged in 2011. For example, the monthly
limit on the value of qualified transportation benefits (parking,
transit passes, etc.) provided by an employer to its employees, remains
at $230. Details on these inflation adjustments can be found in Revenue
Procedure 2011-12 ( http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/rp-11-12.pdf ).
By law, the dollar amounts for a variety of tax provisions, affecting
virtually every taxpayer, must be revised each year to keep pace with
Revenue Procedure 2011-12 (
) provides the cost-of-living adjustments to certain items for 2011 as
required under the Internal Revenue Code. The cost-of-living
adjustments for 2011 for other items were previously published in Rev.
Proc. 2010-40, 2010-46 I.R.B. 663 (dated November 15, 2010). Revenue
Procedure 2011-12 will appear in IRB 2011-2 dated Jan. 10, 2011.
National Taxpayer Advocate Delivers Annual Report to Congress
National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson has released her annual report to
Congress, identifying the need for tax reform as the number one priority
in tax administration. The Advocate expressed continuing concern that
the IRS’s increasing use of hard-core enforcement actions, particularly
tax liens, is inflicting unnecessary harm on financially struggling
taxpayers. The report also examines challenges the IRS is facing in
implementing the new health care law.
“There has been near universal agreement for years that the tax code is
broken and needs to be fixed,” Olson said in releasing the report. “Yet
no broad-based attempt to reform the tax code has been made. This
report documents the burdens the tax code imposes on taxpayers and
explores why many taxpayers may nevertheless feel wedded to key aspects
of the current system, undermining efforts at reform.”
The National Taxpayer Advocate is launching a web page to solicit
taxpayer suggestions regarding tax reform. “What would taxpayers be
willing to give up if they knew that others are giving up their breaks
and the end result would be a much simpler system?” Olson asked. “What
particular provisions of the existing tax system are especially
burdensome or seem particularly unfair?” Suggestions may be submitted at
http://www.taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/ ). TAS will track suggestions
and post results periodically.
Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 Tax Provisions
The Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 was enacted on September 27, 2010.
The SBJA contains some tax provisions that take effect this year. Other
tax provisions will be implemented during the next several years.
Several of the provisions are designed to encourage investment and
provide access to capital for businesses. The following is a list of
those specific tax provisions now in effect; additional information will
be added to this page as it becomes available.
Sect. 2011: Temporary exclusion of 100% of gain on certain small
business stock (
Sect. 2012: General business credits of eligible small businesses for
2010 carried back 5 years (
Sect. 2013: General business credits of eligible small businesses in
2010 not subject to alternative minimum tax (
Sect. 2014: Temporary reduction in S-Corporation built-in gain
recognition period (
Sect. 2021: Increased expensing limitations for 2010 and 2011; certain
real property treated as Code section 179 property (
Sect. 2022: Additional first-year depreciation for 50% of the basis of
certain qualified property (
Sect. 2031: Increase in amount allowed as deduction for start-up
expenditures in 2010 (
Sect. 2042: Deduction for health insurance costs in computing
self-employment taxes in 2010 (
Recent Articles from e-News for Small Businesses
Reminder: elimination of federal tax deposit coupons
Final regulations require all federal tax deposits (
http://www.irs.gov/govt/fslg/article/0,,id=226813,00.html ) be made
electronically ( https://www.eftps.gov/eftps/ ) beginning Jan. 1.
Tax changes for small businesses
) has information about new and expanded deductions and credits that
small businesses should consider when completing tax returns and making
business decisions in 2011.
2011 Forms W-2, W-4, Publication 15 (Circular E)
Publication 15 (Circular E), Employer's Tax Guide for 2011 (
) and the 2011 Form W-4 (
), are now available.
Redesigned SBA website offers personalized research
Small businesses can use the Small Business Administration’s new SBA
) to find information and services according to business type, location
and specific needs.
New guidance on FSA and HRA debit cards
Taxpayers can continue to use flexible spending arrangement and health
reimbursement arrangement debit cards to purchase prescribed
over-the-counter medicines and drugs in 2011.
) IRS Offers New Guidance on FSA and HRA Debit Cards
Affordable Care Act Tax Provisions (
IRS Issues Fact Sheets to Help Taxpayers in 2011
To kick of the tax filing season, the IRS has issued fact sheets (
) to provide information on the following topics:
• FACT SHEET-2011-06 -- Expanded Options for Using Tax Refunds to Buy
• FACT SHEET-2011-05 — The IRS uses social media tools and platforms to
share the latest information on tax changes, initiatives, products and
• FACT SHEET-2011-04 — The Internal Revenue Service offers free help
to taxpayers who need answers to their federal tax questions and help
with filing a return.
• FACT SHEET-2011-03 — A special tax credit offers taxpayers an
opportunity to lower their tax bill or increase their refunds on their
2010 federal tax returns.
• FACT SHEET-2011-02 — Businesses and self-employed individuals should
be aware of tax changes regarding credits, deductions, and making
payments in 2011.
• FACT SHEET-2011-01 — April 18 deadline, tax breaks extended, adoption
credit and more.
Recent IRS announcements
) IRS Kicks Off 2011 Tax Season with Deadline Extended to April 18;
Taxpayers Impacted by Recent Tax Breaks Can File Starting in Mid- to
IR-2010-125 ( http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=232613,00.html
), The Fall 2010 Statistics of Income Bulletin Is Now Available
Subscribe to e-News for Small Businesses
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this link to subscribe:
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If you already receive e-News for Small Businesses, you can share it
with a business acquaintance, colleague or employee. Just forward this
link ( http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/content/0,,id=154826,00.html
) to them to view a sample edition and subscribe.
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