How to change the tax reporting of employer health insurance payments

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Employee Benefits, Small Business, Taxes

There is a ‘wrong way’ and a ‘right way’ to report a change in employee health insurance payments to avoid payroll tax liability problems Case 1: The wrong way to change employer reporting of health insurance Tom works for ABC Inc. at a salary of $50,000. ABC has no health insurance plan but agreed to reimburse […]

Employer health insurance payments are not wages

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Employee Benefits, Health Insurance, Small Business, Taxes

Employer-paid health insurance may not be included in employee wages. Doing so, even in error, does not alleviate the employer from possible excise taxes under ACA. This errant accounting practice also creates additional employer tax penalty liabilities for improper reporting of wages. This afternoon I attended a continuing professional education webinar where a fabulous tax expert […]

Explaining the Health Insurance Penalty

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Accounting, Health Insurance, Taxes

Accountants and tax preparers complain that they have been put in the position of enforcing the Affordable Care Act’s insurance mandate without compensation or training as health insurance agents. They are absolutely correct and this system has produced in some bizarre results. This was illustrated when one accountant wrote to me “I have clients that […]

Personal principles of tax preparation work

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Taxes

I have these four personal beliefs or principles that guide my tax preparation work. Publishing these as “beliefs” here does not mean that they reflect current realities in the industry. Tax preparation fees should be bench-marked in some manner simply because tax filing assistance is a service stemming from a government requirement that affects virtually everybody. Tax preparation […]

Self-prepared tax data hack shows risk in personal devices

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Computers and Internet, Taxes

The nation’s 3rd largest submitter of self-prepared income tax returns reports that data thieves stole customers’ financial information. The interesting part of this story is that the company, TaxAct, says the thieves stole the username and password data elsewhere (for example, hacking individual cell phones) and then used those legitimate log in credentials to gain […]

How to deal with an IRS penalty

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Small Business, Taxes

The IRS issues about 50 million taxpayer penalties each year to the pool of about 100 million taxpayers who file returns. That would 1 out of every 2 filers if the penalties were evenly distributed! In reality, multiple penalties are bundled together and assessed against fewer taxpayers. Yet the number of automated tax penalty assessments for […]

“Watcha gonna do?” – Tax professionals look at ACA compliance

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Employee Benefits, Small Business, Taxes

How should a tax preparer handle suspected ACA penalties for small businesses? This post is inspired by the recent frustration expressed by an accountant who is a Facebook friend. My friend commented on one of my posts that even after a substantial investment of his time to learn and apply provisions of the Affordable Care act, […]