Energy credits can mean big tax savings, IRS reminds taxpayers

  • May 1, 2009

Taxpayers seeking to reduce their energy bills should not overlook valuable savings from energy tax credits. The IRS recently reminded both individuals and businesses that they can benefit from enhanced and extended energy-saving tax credits in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Tax Act of 2009 (2009 Recovery Act).

FAQ: Can the first-time homebuyer credit be claimed in advance of a purchase?

  • May 1, 2009

No. Many individuals may be considering buying a new home in 2009 as home prices continue to drop in many areas across the country. They may also be wondering if they can claim the $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit before actually purchasing the home. Although this might generate a refund you could use as a down payment, the IRS will not allow you to claim the credit in advance of a purchase.

How Do I? Determine if someone has been ‘involuntarily terminated’ for purposes of the new COBRA subsidy?

  • May 1, 2009

Individuals who have been “involuntarily terminated” from employment may be eligible for a temporary subsidy to help pay for COBRA continuation...

Using fringe benefits as an income substitute during the economic downturn

  • May 1, 2009

Many businesses are foregoing salary increases this year because of the economic downturn. How does a business find and retain employees, as well as keep up morale, in the face of this reality? The combined use of fringe benefits and the tax law can help. Some attractive fringe benefits may be provided tax-free to employees and at little cost to employers

Tax lessons from the 2009 filing season

  • May 1, 2009

You've just filed your 2008 tax return and the last thing you likely want to think about is the next filing season. However, it never hurts to have a leg up, and with the end of filing season and the 2009 tax year well underway, now is a great time to take a look back and learn some lessons from this filing season that can undoubtedly help you next year. The following is a list of top lessons individuals can learn from this year's filing season in anticipation of filing their 2009 returns for next year.

IRS releases examinations and collections statistics

  • April 29, 2009

The IRS has released the numbers behind its activities from October 1, 2007 through September 30, 2008 in a publication called the 2008 IRS Data Book. This annually released information provides statistics on returns filed, taxes collected, and the IRS's enforcement efforts.

How Do I? Figure the first-time homebuyer tax credit?

  • April 13, 2009

The Housing Assistance Tax Act of 2008 (2008 Housing Act) gave a boost to individuals purchasing a home for the first time with a $7,500 first-time homebuyer tax credit. The credit was enhanced from $7,500 to $8,000 and extended for certain purchases under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (2009 Recovery Act). This article explains how to determine the credit for eligible first-time homebuyers.

IRS Provides COBRA Guidance

  • April 2, 2009

The Internal Revenue Service has issued guidance to clarify the COBRA benefits offered under the recently passed stimulus bill.

President’s Tax Proposals Stir Controversy

  • April 1, 2009

Several tax provisions in President Obama's proposed federal budget for fiscal year (FY) 2010 have garnered significant criticism on Capitol Hill since the Obama administration released the budget. Obama's proposed budget would cost $3.5 trillion, make major long-term changes to individual and business tax, and includes proposals to limit tax deductions for mortgage interest and charitable contributions for higher-income taxpayers, in addition to long-term plans that raise tax rates from their current level for higher-income individuals