Category Archives: Tax Law

Law School Data Available in SPSS and STATA Format

Bill Henderson (Indiana) Andy Morriss (Illinois) have performed a wonderful service in posting the 2008 ABA Official Guide dataset in both SPSS and STATA format. As Bill explains:We are posting this data because we feel that comparative analysis of legal….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Hug Your Tax Professional, or The Upcoming Horrible, Miserable, Rotten, and Delayed Tax Season

A question I’ve been asked many times this month: When will the 2019 Tax Season (for filing 2018 tax returns) open? The answer I’ve given is, “I don’t know.” Normally by now the IRS has released the date. As of today, the IRS’s only comment has been, “It might not be in January [2019].” At a recent continuing education event speakers from the IRS implied that the 2019 Tax Season could be delayed–possibly significantly. My tax software company has no idea; many forms state “Final on January 28th” but that’s just a best guess on their part. Why? Because the IRS still has not released all of the final 2018 forms. For example, the link to Form 1040 takes you to the 2017 form. (You can find the draft of the new 2018 form here.) There are two major issues and one minor issue delaying the release of the forms. First, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) changed much of the Tax Code; this required the IRS to….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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14 Tips For Making Your Charitable Gift Tax-Deductible In 2018

Photo credit: Getty A tax deduction for charitable giving isn’t guaranteed just because you’re feeling generous. As with everything in tax law, it’s important to follow the rules, and with tax reform, those rules are changing. Click here for full coverage of America’s Top Charities. Here are 14 tips for making your charitable donation count: 1. Itemize. To claim a charitable deduction on your tax return, you must itemize your deductions. For 2018, you report itemized deductions on Schedule A on your federal form 1040 using lines 11-14: Sched A (You can find out more about changes to Schedule A here.) 2. Bundle. With the doubling of the standard deduction (you can see the 2018 tax rates and other tax changes here), there’s a reduced incentive to itemize. Since you must itemize to claim a charitable deduction, some taxpayers won’t benefit by giving to charity in one year, but exercising a little creativity can carry you a long way:….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Last Minute Tips 2018

Today TaxMama®wants to give you some steps to take before the end of 2018. Dear Family,This year, it’s especially difficult to figure out how to reduce your taxes. The average couple is not likely to be itemizing any more. Folks with high employee business expenses won’t be able to use them. Individuals with mortgages might still have expenses above the standard deduction. Or folks, who, heaven forbid,have been seriously ill with minimal insurance coverage. So what’s a taxpayer to do? Here are some ideas.Do a withholding check-up – you’re apt to come up short this year – IRS payroll check-up tool https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/time-for-a-paycheck-checkupSeniors age 70 1/2 -remember to withdraw your Required Minimum Distribution from your retirement accounts – https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-reminder-deadline-dec-31-for-most-retirees-who-must-make-required-retirement-plan-distributions -50% penalty if you don’t – but….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Wireless Taxes and Fees Climb Again in 2018

Key Findings A typical American household with four wireless phones paying $100 per month for taxable wireless service can expect to pay about $229 per year in wireless taxes, fees, and surcharges—up from $221 in 2017. Nationally, these impositions make up about 19.1 percent of the average customer’s bill—the highest rate ever. Illinois now has the highest wireless taxes in the country at 27.6%, followed by Alaska at 26.1%, Washington at 26.1%, Nebraska at 25.5%, and New York at 25.2%. Since 2008, average monthly wireless service bills per subscriber have dropped from just under $50 per-line per month to $38.66 per month—a 23 percent reduction. However, wireless taxes have increased from 15.1 percent to 19.1 percent of the average bill—a 27 percent increase. Most states impose higher taxes, fees, and surcharges on wireless service than on other taxable goods and services. In Alaska, which has no state sales tax but allows local sales taxes,….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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