Compromised Asset Appraisals Undo Like-Kind Tax Plan

September 22, 2017 | Court Rulings, IRS Regulation, Tax Planning, Tax Preparation, Valuations

Exelon Corp. v. Commissioner, 2016 U.S. Tax Ct. LEXIS 26 (Sept. 19, 2016) A Section 1031 case that Judge Laro adjudicated cautions experts about allowing the hiring attorney to assume control over the appraisal. In ruling for the government, the judge found the taxpayer’s legal counsel had “interfered with the integrity and the independence of  Continue Reading »


Inadequate Records Lead to Unfavorable Results for Taxpayers

September 18, 2017 | Court Rulings, IRS Regulation, Tax Planning, Tax Preparation

Although the Federal tax law allows deductions for many items, such as legitimate business expenses and charitable donations, you must maintain adequate records to support them. If your tax return is audited, missing or incomplete records could lead to additional taxes, interest and penalties, as these three recent U.S. Tax Court cases demonstrate. 1. Alan Brookes, et  Continue Reading »


Why It’s Risky to Rely on Unofficial IRS Guidance

September 15, 2017 | IRS Regulation, Tax Planning, Tax Preparation

Nina Olson, National Taxpayer Advocate, explained in a recent blog why taxpayers can’t rely on answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and Answers and other forms of “unofficial” guidance that are posted on the IRS website. While tax professionals already knew this, many taxpayers may find it to be a disturbing revelation. In the blog, Olson  Continue Reading »


IRS: Beware of Charity Scams Related to Hurricane Harvey

September 13, 2017 | Fraud Prevention, IRS Regulation, Tax Planning, Tax Preparation

Unfortunately, the IRS has once again had to warn about possible fake charity scams that are emerging due to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Taxpayers should seek out recognized charitable groups to make donations if they want to help. “While there has been an enormous wave of support across the country for the victims of Hurricane  Continue Reading »


Help from the IRS for Hurricane Harvey Victims

September 11, 2017 | IRS Regulation, Tax Planning, Tax Preparation

Due to recent devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, the IRS is responding by offering victims of the store additional time to fulfill tax responsibilities and complete tax-related tasks. “This has been a devastating storm, and the IRS will move quickly to provide tax relief to hurricane victims,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “The IRS will  Continue Reading »


Court of Appeals Sides With Taxpayers on Right to Vet IRS Expert Valuation

September 8, 2017 | Business Plans, Court Rulings, IRS Regulation, Valuations

Cavallaro v. Commissioner, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 20713 (Nov. 18, 2016) (Cavallaro II) In 2014, taxpayers who had relied on estate planning professionals to affect the transfer of their family business to their sons confronted a tax liability on a $29.6 million gift. A decision from the appeals court, however, offers them a glimmer of  Continue Reading »


U.S. Treasury to Retire the myRA Program

September 4, 2017 | Financial Planning, IRS Regulation, Tax Planning, Tax Preparation

According to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the My Retirement Account (myRA) program will be coming to an end, even though it was just created just a few years ago in 2014. As part of the Trump Administration’s effort to slim down wasteful spending where possible, the Treasury has decided this short-lived Roth IRA  Continue Reading »


Business ID Theft: Is Your Data at Risk?

September 1, 2017 | Business Plans, Fraud Prevention, IRS Regulation, Tax Planning, Tax Preparation

Over the last two years the IRS and state tax authorities have made significant strides in curbing individual identity theft. But cyberattacks against businesses are on the upswing. Here are some simple ways business taxpayers can help protect their data from hackers. Trends in ID Theft The IRS recently announced that the number of individuals reporting identity theft in the  Continue Reading »


Key Questions to Ask Before Joining Another Business

August 30, 2017 | Business Plans, Tax Planning

Things have been going well for your Maine-based small business, and you are considering joining forces with another business for the benefit of both of you. This can be the most efficient way to grow, as long as you plan carefully. Often the reason for failed mergers and acquisitions is management problems, not market conditions.  Continue Reading »


Is Your Expert Skirting the Standards?

August 28, 2017 | Court Rulings, Valuations

In 1993, the Supreme Court positioned judges as “gatekeepers” against “junk science” in Daubert v. Merrell Pharmaceutical, Inc. (509 U.S, 579). Then, in 1999, Kumho Tire Company v. Carmichael (526 U.S. 137) extended the scope of Daubert beyond scientific testimony to other academic disciplines, including finance and appraisal, accounting, statistics, and economics. Daubert hearings are  Continue Reading »