Saturday, July 14, 2007


Happy Bastile Day! Lots of buzz to report this week -

* Ryan Ellis reminds us that “
Alimony Is Taxable, Even If It's Not Deductible” on his TAX INFO BLOG (formerly known as Tax Playa). This Q+A posting is an excellent supplement to my recent series of postings on divorce.

* On the same day, Kay Bell, the Yellow Rose of Taxes, goes to the opposite end of the issue – getting married - with “Tax To-Do's After Saying 'I Do'” – an excellent discussion of how marriage can affect many tax and financial decisions.

William Perez of TAXES.ABOUT.COM reports that the IRS has certified two Mazda sport utility vehicles for the hybrid tax credit. Here are the tax credit amounts - $3,000 for the 2008 Mazda Tribute 2WD Hybrid, and $2,200 for the 2008 Mazda Tribute 4WD Hybrid.

* Gina Gwozdz gives some valuable advice that bears constant repeating in her posting on “Gifting” at GINA’S TAX ARTICLES. “Please make sure that if you make the gift the recipient gets a separate letter from you detailing the cost basis and purchase dates of the shares transferred.”

As I have written here and elsewhere many times, when you receive a gift of securities your cost basis and holding period for income tax purposes is generally the same as the cost basis and holding period of the person who makes the gift. Your father purchased 100 shares of XYZ for $1,000.00 in 2004 and gifts these shares to you. In 2007 you sell these shares for $2,000.00. You have a $1,000.00 long-term capital gain. As such, it is vitally important that when you receive a gift of securities you also get in writing from the person making the gift the original purchase price and date of purchase of the securities that are gifted. You should also note on the statement the date the gift was made. This written statement should be treated as your “purchase confirmation” for the securities and filed away in a secure location.

* Small Business Taxes and Management has added a special report titled “Joint Committee on Taxation Releases AMT Projections” to its website. This report includes AMT projections through 2017 compiled by the Joint Committee on Taxation. As I have said time and again, “The AMT Must Be Destroyed!

* The Summer 2007 issue of the Tax Foundation’s quarterly newsletter TAX WATCH is now available online. This issue includes articles on “Tax Boom: America's Rising State and Local Tax Burden” (“Taken together, state and local taxes will consume eleven cents of every dollar earned by Americans in 2007.”) and “Which Cities Pay the Lowest-and Highest-Taxes?” (“Six of the top 10 highest-tax cities lie within 50 miles of New York City.”).

* The website “Get It Done Online!” is an all-in-one guide to government services. Use this site to access U.S. government services from your computer, from A (Address Changes When You Move) to Z (ZIP Code Lookup). You can also search by government organization and by topic.


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