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Lorraine Libby Darling
Certified Public Accountant
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The IRS released the optional standard mileage rates for 2022. Most taxpayers may use these rates to compute deductible costs of operating vehicles for:

  • business,

  • medical, and

  • charitable purposes

Some members of the military may also use these rates to compute their moving expense deductions.


The IRS has encouraged taxpayers to take important actions this month to help them file their tax returns in 2022, including special steps related to Economic Impact Payments and advance Child Tax Credit payments. As a part of a series of reminders to help taxpayers get ready for the upcoming tax filing season, the IRS highlighted a special page the outlines the steps taxpayers can take to make the tax filing season easier.


The IRS has extended the availability of electronic signatures on certain audit and non-audit forms. Through October 31, 2023, taxpayers and their authorized representatives may electronically sign documents and email documents to the IRS. This is an exception to normal policy. Previously, the IRS had allowed e-signatures through the end of 2021.


The IRS has issued guidance for employers on the retroactive termination of the COVID-19 employee retention credit against the employer's share of Medicare tax. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (P.L. 117-58) amended Code Sec. 3134 so that for most employers the credit applies only to wages paid before October 1, 2021. If the employer is a recovery startup business, the credit continues to apply to wages paid before January 1, 2022.


The IRS has reminded tax professionals and taxpayers that they can use digital signatures on a variety of common IRS forms and access a secure online platform to view and make changes to their account. The IRS has balanced the e-signature option with critical security and protection needed against identity theft and fraud.


The IRS has reminded taxpayers that they can get extra protection starting in January by joining the Service's Identity Protection Personal Identification Number (IP PIN) program. The IRS has made recent changes to the program to make it easier for more taxpayers to join. The fastest and easiest way to receive an IP Pin is by using the Get an IP PIN tool.


The Internal Revenue Service is now allowing taxpayers who have had an offer in compromise accepted by the agency to keep their tax refunds instead of the previous policy of having those refunds applied to their outstanding tax debt.


A. Mcnulty, 157 TC —, No. 10, Dec. 61,950

Delivery of coins to the owner of a self-directed "Check Book IRA" was taxable income even though she took the coins as manager of the IRA’s LLC. While an IRA owner may act as a conduit or agent of the IRA custodian, she may do so only as long as she is not in constructive or actual receipt of the IRA assets. The fact that the Check Book IRA website said this would not be treated as a taxable distribution did not constitute reasonable cause for escaping understatement penalties.


The Internal Revenue Service is keeping the pressure on high income taxpayers who do not file their taxes as well as other high wealth taxpayers who may otherwise be hiding their earnings to avoid paying taxes.

And while agents are actively pursuing these people, Darren Guillot, Commissioner of the IRS Small Business/Self-Employed – Collection division said the goal is to avoid as much as possible escalating a case to enforcement proceedings.

His message on November 15 to attendees of the AICPA & CIMA National and Sophisticated Tax Planning Conferences in Washington, D.C., was a simple one: "Just tell the truth. We want to get you in compliance. We want you to file on time and pay what you owe. Every case is not criminal. We don’t want any case to be criminal, or enforcement or a seizure."


Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Charles Rettig praised the work of agency employees throughout the COVID-19 pandemic but stated that there simply are not enough of them as the agency is slowly working through the backlog the pandemic caused.

Rettig used that as the foundation to call for not only more funding for the agency, but to encourage people to apply for open positions within the agency, especially as it is facing significant employee shortages in the coming years.


Building on earlier steps to help taxpayers buffeted by the economic slowdown, the IRS recently enhanced its "Fresh Start" initiative. The IRS has announced penalty relief for unemployed individuals who cannot pay their taxes on time and has increased the threshold amount for streamlined installment agreements.

Claiming a charitable deduction for a cash contribution is straightforward. The taxpayer claims the amount paid, whether by cash, check, credit card or some other method, if the proper records are maintained. For contributions of property, the rules can be more complex.

The start of the school year is a good time to consider the variety of tax benefits available for education. Congress has been generous in providing education benefits in the form of credits, deductions and exclusions from income. The following list describes the most often used of these benefits.

With school almost out for the summer, parents who work are starting to look for activities for their children to keep them occupied and supervised. The possibilities include sending a child to day camp or overnight camp. Parents faced with figuring out how to afford the price tag of these activities may wonder whether some or part of these costs may be tax deductible. At least two possible tax breaks should be considered: the dependent care credit in most cases, and the deduction for medical expenses in certain special situations.

As gasoline prices have climbed in 2011, many taxpayers who use a vehicle for business purposes are looking for the IRS to make a mid-year adjustment to the standard mileage rate. In the meantime, taxpayers should review the benefits of using the actual expense method to calculate their deduction. The actual expense method, while requiring careful recordkeeping, may help offset the cost of high gas prices if the IRS does not make a mid-year change to the standard mileage rate. Even if it does, you might still find yourself better off using the actual expense method, especially if your vehicle also qualifies for bonus depreciation.

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