Tuesday, November 10, 2015


An especially “meaty” BUZZ today.

* Tax pros – the November 1, 2015 issue of my free email newsletter TAXPRO BUZZ is available.  You can now view each issue at my THE TAX PROFESSIONAL website!  Spread the word to your fellow tax pros.   

* Peter J Reilly states “This CPA Not Rooting for AICPA in its IRS Lawsuit".  What is PJR talking about?

So this week’s aggravation is that the AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants) is wasting my dues money again.   The DC Circuit has breathed life into a pointless lawsuit against the IRS that was dismissed last year.”

I spoke about this pointless lawsuit in “Small Victory for the AICPA”.  As PJR explains (highlight is mine) -

Essentially the AICPA is objecting to letting the ‘Annual Filing Season Program Participants’ be on the same list with CPAs and attorneys, who are not actually required to know all that much about taxes to maintain their licenses.

Along the way he lets us in on some CPA secrets (again, highlights are mine) –

If you go to a CPA firm to have your return prepared, the bigger the firm, the less likely it is that your return will actually be prepared by a CPA.”

And –

. . . the preferred method for getting the actual work done is by using people in India.”

As I have said in the past, I actually would have more faith in the tax knowledge of the person in India than I would in the local CPA.

Peter ends the post by quoting a veteran fellow tax blogger who has “some choice comments on the lawsuit”.  Can you guess who that blogger is?

* Kay Bell tells us “New Ways and Means chairman Rep Kevin Brady wants to move tax extenders 'sooner rather than later'" at DON’T MESS WITH TAXES.  Let us hope he gets his way.  The first week of November is now gone.

* It’s a bit late to be asking – but Maryalene LaPonsie of US NEWS AND WORLD REPORT wants to know “Should You Be Making Quarterly Tax Payments?”.

Maryalene is correct when she says –

However, it isn’t only the self-employed who have to send in these payments. Anyone who could end up owing more than $1,000 in April should be making estimated tax payments throughout the year.”

I tell you a way to avoid the penalty for underpayment of estimated tax in my “2015 Year-End Tax Planning Guide”.

One of the alleged “offsets” “calls for the IRS to use private debt collectors to collect unpaid taxes”.  How can this be an offset when the government actually lost money when private collection agencies were used in the past?

Do we need any more proof that the members of Congress are idiots?

* William Perez teaches “a basic overview of itemized deductions and their limitations” in, appropriately titled, “Itemized Deductions” at ABOUT.COM. 

Bill explains “When a Person Must Itemize Deductions”, and tell us –

Generally speaking, people choose to itemize when the total of all their itemized deductions exceeds their standard deduction.”

But you also may want to itemize, even if the Standard Deduction exceeds your allowable itemized deductions, if you are a victim of the dreaded Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) and you have deductible excess medical expenses, charitable contributions, gambling losses, and/or acquisition debt mortgage interest.  The Standard Deduction is not allowed as a deduction in calculating the dreaded AMT.

* Nothing to do with taxes, but FYI – “NerdWallet’s Top 10 Credit Card Deals of 2015”.

* For Iowa residents – Jason Dinesen explains “What Is Iowa Alternate Tax?” at DINESEN TAX TIMES.

Over the years I have done the state income tax returns of many states for clients who had moved out of NJ.  But I never did an Iowa tax return.  And, since I do not accept new 1040 clients and only do NJ and NY state tax returns for existing clients, I never will.

* Jim Blankenship talks about the “Medicare Premium Part B Premium Increase for 2016" at GETTING YOUR FINANCIAL DUCKS IN A ROW.

* And finally – Are you looking for a tax professional to help you’re your year-end tax planning, and/or to prepare your 2015 tax returns? Here is where to start - findataxprofessional.com.  


I remember when comedian Pat Paulsen from the controversial SMOTHERS BROTHERS COMEDY HOUR ran for President as a joke.  He certainly did not take himself seriously.

The current joke campaign is that of Donald Trump.  Unfortunately Trump takes himself seriously.  And, even more unfortunately, so do some actual voters.

Pat Paulsen would be a better President than the Trumpster.  Hey, Homer Simpson, or even Alfred E Neuman, would be a better choice for President than the Trumpster!

If any legitimate Republican candidate had said and done one tenth of the things Trump has said and done over the years they would be denigrated.


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