Tuesday, August 28, 2018


* Have you seen the latest “issue” of THE LAKE REGION SOMETHING yet?  

* Russ Fox reports on the Treasury’s correct and expected response to the attempted scams by states to “get around” the $10,000 itemized deduction limitation on state and local taxes in “We’re Not Gonna Take It” at TAXABLE TALK.

Russ quotes from the release (the highlight is mine) -

For example, if a state grants a 70 percent state tax credit and the taxpayer pays $1,000 to an eligible entity, the taxpayer receives a $700 state tax credit. The taxpayer must reduce the $1,000 contribution by the $700 state tax credit, leaving an allowable contribution deduction of $300 on the taxpayer’s federal income tax return.”

This is exactly what I told my NJ and NY clients when the scams were first passed.

* Kay Bell also discusses this issue in “SALT deduction proposed regulations would make state tax charitable credit workarounds useless” at DON’T MESS WITH TAXES.

* Kelly Phillips Erb, FORBES.COM’s TaxGirl, debunks “Back to School Myths: School Uniforms Are Deductible”.

* Jim Blankenship discusses “Alimony and Taxes, 2019 style” at GETTING YOUR FINANCIAL DUCKS IN A ROW.


Monday, August 27, 2018


I am truly saddened by the loss of John McCain.

There could not have been two more polar opposite public officials than John McCain and Donald Trump.

John McCain was a true hero. A man of integrity and courage who devoted his entire life to serving his country unselfishly and with honor in the Navy and in Congress. America and the world are better because he lived.

Trump is a totally worthless piece of garbage, a narcissist and a sociopath who never performed a single positive or unselfish act in his life. He lies every time he opens his mouth and continues to destroy the honor, integrity and credibility of America and the office of the President every day he remains in office.

The passing of John McCain also represents the death of the Republican Party as a credible and intelligent political organization.  The party of Reagan and McCain is now truly the party of Donald T Rump – a party of lies, dishonor and disrespect.

True words from the recent editorial “The Full-Spectrum Corruption of Donald Trump: Everyone and everything he touches rots” by a respected individual who served in the previous three Republican administrations (highlights are mine) -
"A party that once spoke with urgency and apparent conviction about the importance of ethical leadership — fidelity, honesty, honor, decency, good manners, setting a good example — has hitched its wagon to the most thoroughly and comprehensively corrupt individual who has ever been elected president.

Some of the men who have been elected president have been unscrupulous in certain areas — infidelity, lying, dirty tricks, financial misdeeds — but we’ve never before had the full-spectrum corruption we see in the life of Donald Trump."

It is vital for the future of America and the world to register to vote – and vote in the November elections against ANY candidate that refuses to denounce Donald T Rump.  Candidates for national and statewide elections who support and defend the Trump Presidency MUST be defeated.  


Tuesday, August 21, 2018


A “meaty” BUZZ this week!

Be sure to check out THE FINAL WORD for my best idea ever.

* A new “issue” of THE LAKE REGION SOMETHING was posted last week.  Have you seen it yet?   

* The GSA has announced “FY 2019 Per Diem Rates Now Available”.  Rates are set by fiscal year, effective October 1 each year.  The GSA reminds us –

Please note! The FY2019 rates are NOT the default rates until October 1, 2018.”

There are six possible Meal and Incidental Expense rates for fiscal 2019 - $55, $56, $61, $66, $71 and $76.  These rates are higher than fiscal 2018’s $51, $54, $59, $64, $69 and $74.

The Meal and Incidental Expense is broken down here.  The portion of the per diem amount that represents “Incidental Expenses” – “fees and tips given to porters, baggage carriers, hotel staff, and staff on ships” - is a consistent $5.00 for each of the 6 rates.  The $5.00 also applied to all of the fiscal 2018 per diems.

Just a reminder – employee business expenses are no longer deductible on Schedule A, so the per diem if only for use by business entities.  The Meal and Incidental Expense per diem can be used by Schedule C filers.

* Roger Russell reports “D.C. Circuit Court strikes down AICPA challenge to unenrolled preparer program” at ACCOUNTING TODAY.

The AICPA consistently opposes and attempts to destroy any program, credential or designation that identifies and confirms a non-CPA tax preparer’s competence, knowledge and experience in preparing tax returns.  It wants to maintain the ridiculous myth that only CPAs are tax experts. 

* The Peter G Peterson Foundation’s FISCAL BLOG confirms that “Last Year’s Tax Law Did Not Simplify the System – It Added More Tax Breaks” –

The United States tax code is filled with loopholes, deductions, exemptions, credits, and preferential rates; such preferences are known as tax expenditures. Many economists, policymakers, and analysts believe it would help the economy to do away with some or all of those tax breaks to make the code more simple, efficient, and fair.

Last year’s tax legislation was a key opportunity to do just that, but in addition to adding significantly to our national debt, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act actually increased the number of tax breaks.”

The tax code contained 216 “tax expenditures” before enactment of the GOP Tax Act.  The Act introduced 7 more.

* Robert W Wood explains “Trump Tax Law Hurts Personal Injury Suit Settlements” at FORBES.COM (below highlight is mine) -

In 2018 and thereafter, there is no deduction for these legal fees. Yes, that means you collect 60%, but are taxed on 100%.”

In the past legal fees were deductible as a Miscellaneous itemized expense – but were not deductible in calculating the dreaded AMT, so this inequity is really not new.  And claiming 100% of the award, before legal fees, as gross income, both then and now, increases AGI and could reduce or eliminate other tax deductions and credits.  See my post “Nobody Ever Said Taxes Were Fair– PART II”.

* Jason Dinesen begins an interesting discussion for tax professionals in “What Happens to Clients Who 'Want a Second Opinion'? at DINESEN TAX TIMES.

Actually, I don’t recall this ever happening to me.

* A agree with Howard Gleckman of TAX VOX that “The TCJA’s Pass-Through Deduction Was Misguided From the Beginning”.

Once Congress started down the road of granting the pass-through deduction to some business owners but not others, it put government in the role of picking very specific winners and losers. A cardinal rule of tax policy is horizontal equity—treating taxpayers in similar circumstances in roughly the same way. Another is that the tax law should be as simple as possible. The TCJA’s pass-through provision scores a resounding “F” on both measures.”

* Jeff Rose gives us the “Rules and Limits to Open a SEP IRA for2018” at GOOD FINANCIAL SENSE.

* New Jersey once again, like Oliver Twist, last on the list.  It is #50 in overall rank on the TAX FOUNDATION “2018 State Business Tax Climate Index”.

* Also from the TAX FOUNDATION “What Is the Real Value of $100 in Your State?”.

It looks like my move from NJ to PA was a smart one.  $100 is worth only $88.34 in NJ, but $101.63 in PA!

* New Jersey is bashed on another list – this time “America's Worst States to Retire In” from MONEY WISE -

New Jersey lands at No. 2 on our list because the Garden State can take a serious financial toll on retirees.”

And –

The state also has the second-highest combined state and local tax burden in America.”

The worst state to retire in, according to MONEY WISE, is Louisiana. 

I am very happy in Pennsylvania!


My very best idea ever!

Let’s have at least one full day where the name Donald J Trump in any form is NOT mentioned in ANY media anywhere.

Reference to Trump in any media would be limited to “the President” or “The White House”.

NO images or pictures of Trump would appear anywhere in ANY media.

And any headline mentioning or referring to “the President” would appear BELOW THE FOLD in all newspapers.

It would be a NATIONAL NO TRUMP DAY – although it could not be referred to by that name on the actual day itself.

It would drive Donald T Rump crazy.  He would hate NO press more than bad press.

Spread the word!


Monday, August 20, 2018


(1)  A citizen most certainly has a right to his or her individual political beliefs.  There is nothing wrong with supporting and defending and promoting a traditional Republican or conservative philosophy or agenda – just as there is nothing wrong with supporting and defending and promoting a traditional Democratic or liberal philosophy or agenda.

What is wrong, and truly stupid, is supporting and defending and promoting Donald Trump the man – an ignorant, incompetent, self-absorbed and self-important, delusional, and mentally unstable narcissist and sociopath who cares only about himself, his perception and lining his pockets and does not care one iota about America or the American people.

You CAN be both intelligent and a Republican or both intelligent and a Democrat.  But you CANNOT be both intelligent and support and defend Trump.

Opposing and denouncing Trump is NOT opposing and denouncing Republican or conservative philosophy.  It is opposing and denouncing a dangerous demagogue who wants to be an authoritarian dictator like Putin or Un who is working to destroy America’s values on a daily basis.

Opposing and denouncing Trump is NOT partisan politics.  It is patriotism!

(2) Saying “Trump is no worse than other politicians” or “All politicians lie” is NEVER an acceptable defense or justification for the unethical behavior of Donald T Rump or continued support for Trump’s Presidency.

First – no other national politician has ever been worse than Trump.  And no other national politician has lied as egregiously or consistently as Trump.

But, more important, it is the bad act itself that is unacceptable, indefensible and unjustifiable.  If it is unacceptable, indefensible and unjustifiable for one politician to lie or act unethically, it is unacceptable, indefensible and unjustifiable for ANY politician to lie or act unethically.  ALL politicians should be called out and held accountable for lying and unethical behavior.

You wouldn’t, for example, attempt to defend or justify the pedophilia of a local priest or coach by saying “Other priests and coaches sexually abuse children”.

The problem with Republicans is that they are erroneously using the “ends justify the means” defense.  It is OK for Trump to lie and act unethically (and stupidly) on a daily basis if his continuance as President could assist in the implementation of a Republican agenda. 

An act that is wrong and unacceptable if done by a Democrat is equally wrong and unacceptable if done by a Republican.

Trump’s words and deeds are wrong, and he should be called out and held accountable for each and every one.



The new GOP Tax Act drastically changes the US Tax Code, and will affect every single tax return filed from 2018 to 2025.  It includes some simplification, but it also adds more complexity to the Code.  It is not true “tax reform”. 

I have been preparing 1040s (and 1040As) for compensation since February of 1972.  As a veteran tax professional I am well aware that the Internal Revenue Code has grown into a complicated and convoluted “mucking fess”.  The major source of tax return errors, by both paid tax preparers and taxpayers who self-prepare, and tax fraud is the excessive complexity of the Tax Code.

Like Frankenstein in the Hammer film, the Tax Code must be destroyed!  It must be totally shredded and rewritten from scratch. The new Internal Revenue Code must acknowledge and confirm the fact that the one and only purpose of the federal income tax system is to raise the money necessary to fund the government. 

The new Tax Code must –

(1) Be simple – easy for everyone to understand.  Simplicity for simplicity’s sake. 

(2) Be fair and equitable - treat all taxpayers equally.

(3) Be consistent – treat specific conditions, situations, and activities, and maintain specific definitions and descriptions, the same in all instances.

(4) Encourage savings, investment, and growth.

(5) Index for inflation all allowable deductions and credits.

The Tax Code must not –

(1) Be used for social engineering, to redistribute income or wealth, or to deliver social welfare and other government benefits.

(2) Encourage or discourage certain economic decisions (other than savings, investment, and growth), or provide exclusive benefits for specific industries, business activities, or classes of taxpayers.

(3) Contain any refundable credits, or any phase-outs, exclusions or adjustments based on Adjusted Gross Income or Modified Adjusted Gross Income.

(4) Contain any “alternative” tax calculation systems (such as the “Alternative Minimum Tax”).

(5) Contain any temporary deductions, credits, benefits, or provisions.

One of the biggest problems with the current system, a large source of its complexity, and the major source of tax fraud, is the erroneous use of the tax return to deliver government benefits.  The Internal Revenue Service, and tax professionals, should not be required to act as Social Workers and administer government program benefit payments.   

I am not saying the government shouldn’t provide financial assistance to the working poor and college students, provide encouragements for purchasing health insurance, making energy-saving purchases and improvements and other ‘worthy’ actions.  What I am saying is that such assistance and encouragements should not be distributed via the Form 1040.

The benefits provided by the Earned Income Tax Credit and the refundable Child Tax Credit would be distributed via existing federal welfare programs for Aid to Families with Dependent Children. The benefits provided by the education tax credits and deduction for tuition and fees would be distributed via existing federal programs for providing direct student financial aid. The benefits provided by the Premium Tax Credit, the energy credits, and other such personal and business credits would be distributed via direct discount payments to the appropriate vendors or direct rebate programs, similar to the successful Cash for Clunkers program of a few years ago, funded by the budget of the appropriate Cabinet departments.

Distributing the benefits in this manner is much better than the current method for many reasons:

1. It would be easier for the government to verify that the recipient of the subsidy, discount or rebate actually qualified for the money, greatly reducing fraud. And tax preparers, and the IRS, would no longer need to take on the added responsibility of having to verify that a person qualifies for government benefits.

2. The qualifying individuals would get the money at the “point of purchase,” when it is really needed, and not have to go “out of pocket” up front and wait to be reimbursed when they file their tax return.

3. We would be able to calculate the true income tax burden of individuals. Many of the now infamous “47 percent” would still be receiving government benefits, but it would not be done through the income tax system, so they would actually be paying federal income tax.

4. We could measure the true cost of education, housing, health, energy and welfare programs in the federal budget because benefit payments would be properly allocated to the appropriate departments. 

Every taxpayer should be taxed exactly the same – regardless of marital status – under one tax rate schedule.  There should be neither a marriage tax penalty nor a marriage tax benefit.  And, if not a single flat tax rate, there should be no more than 2 or 3 rates and not 7.

On the business side, the new Tax Code should do away with all industry-specific loopholes, deductions and credits for all business activities, whether a sole proprietor, partnership or corporation.  A business should be taxed on the net book income for the year’s activity. 

Corporations should be allowed to claim a “dividends paid” tax deduction to do away with the current double-taxation of income.  Let corporations deduct from taxable income all dividends paid to shareholders out of accumulated “earnings and profits”, and pay federal corporate income tax on this net amount.  The dividends paid would be taxed to the recipient shareholders at normal “ordinary income” rates.  This would do away with the current “double-taxation” of corporate income.

And we should no longer allow a deduction for depreciation of real property, or capital improvements thereto, for any business activity – not on Form 1065, Form 1120, Form 1120S, Form 1041, or Form 1040 Schedules C, E, or F.  Real estate does not “depreciate”.  You do not replace a building every few years because it no longer provides the same service or function.  And, generally, the value of real estate as a component of the value of a business does not drop as it ages.  Depreciation of real property is a “phantom expense”, and distorts the economic reality of the business activity.   

Real estate is an investment, just like stocks, bonds, mutual funds, etc.  You invest in rental real estate because you expect the building to increase in value over time, often more so than stocks and mutual funds, and because it generates “dividends” in the form of net rental income or the elimination of rent expense.  Allowing a deduction for depreciation of real estate is like letting those who purchase stock depreciate the purchase price of the stock as a deduction against the dividends paid out.  If the value of a property drops due to market conditions then a loss can be claimed if sold, just like with any other investment.

For a more detailed discussion of the depreciation deduction see my post “Let’s Talk About Depreciation”.

Unfortunately, my dream of substantive tax reform will probably remain just that - a dream.  Tax law is written by Congress the members of Congress have absolutely no knowledge of or experience with the practicality of tax return preparation.  And, of course, there are the personal agendas of Congresspersons, who rely on the political contributions of lobbyists working to maintain specific tax breaks, and who more often than not avoid independent thought and merely do what they are told by their Party.


Thursday, August 16, 2018


Over at the website ACCOUNTING TODAY Jeff Stimpson recently asked the question “Is this a good time to get into tax prep?

The recently passed GOP Tax Act – aka “The Tax Cut and Jobs Act” – has drastically changed the US Tax Code, effecting every single tax return that will be filed for 2018 through 2025.  Historically, any change to tax law has been good for the tax preparation business.  The Tax Reform Act of 1986, the last major overhaul of the Tax Code, was nicknamed “The Accountant’s Full Employment Act”.

Jeff explains.

Even before reform, many Americans admitted befuddlement over the tax system: more than seven out of 10 called the U.S. system complex in a recent survey from The James Madison Institute. A quarter of respondents didn’t even know if they took the standard or itemized deduction, and only a third expected reform would produce a simpler Tax Code.”

The introduction of DIY tax preparation software and online filing websites has certainly hurt the tax preparation industry.  However, as I am constantly saying - No software package, or online filing service, is a substitute for knowledge of the Tax Code, and no tax software package, or online filing service, is a substitute for a competent, experienced tax professional.

As with any software program the rule is "garbage in - garbage out". If you don't know how to enter the information, or what information to enter, you will not get the best, or even the correct, answer.  A fellow tax professional and tax blogger correctly observed, “Just because there is a computer program or app that will help you complete a task doesn't release you from making sure you understand the choices you make with that program.”

And when the IRS comes after you for errors on your tax return you can’t blame it on the software. The US Tax Court has on two separate occasions rejected the "Turbo-Tax Defense" when a taxpayer attempted to blame tax preparation software for a negligent tax return.

While the GOP Tax Act does to a degree simplify the 1040 for many filers, I have also been saying for years that a much simpler tax system would not hurt my business. I sincerely believe that if we did nothing but 1040As all day during the tax season, we would make more money, experience less agita, and substantially reduce the number of extensions needed.  Most of my clients would not decide to do their own returns if the tax system was simpler; they would continue to come to me.  Most of my clients just don’t want to be bothered with the task of preparing their tax return, and want to make sure they do not miss anything.

Finally - the shameless self-promotion.  If you are thinking of becoming a tax professional I suggest you read my book “So You Want To Be A Tax Preparer”.  For a discussion of this book read “My Review of Robert Flach's New Book So You Want to Be a Tax Preparer” by Andy Frye of the Pronto Tax School.


Wednesday, August 15, 2018


In his classic Broadway musical comedy A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM. Steve Sondheim tells us that “Everybody Ought to Have a Maid”.  I agree.

I also believe that everybody ought to have an IRA.

Everybody with earned income, regardless of age, level of income or wealth or coverage under an employer plan, should have an IRA as a form of secured savings.  This is because of the multiple benefits of an IRA account – the tax deferred, or tax free, accumulation of income, the possible tax deduction it can provide, and the fact that IRAs are, in most cases, protected from general creditors to whom you may owe outstanding debts and during bankruptcy procedures. 

You should, of course, first take as much advantage as possible within your budget of your employer’s 401(k), 403(b), 457, or whatever retirement plan, hopefully to the maximum annual allowable contribution. 

There are two types of IRAs – the “traditional” IRA and the ROTH IRA.  If you can have a ROTH IRA you should have a ROTH IRA and use it as your current savings account.

The maximum amount you can contribute to a ROTH IRA, a traditional IRA or a combination of ROTH and traditional accounts for 2018 is $5,500.   If you are age 50 or older you can contribute an additional $1,000.  A non-working spouse can open and contribute to an IRA, up to the maximum, as long as the other spouse has earned income. The combined contributions of working and non-working spouses are limited to the working spouse’s earned income.

Contributions to a ROTH IRA are never deductible on your federal or state income tax returns.  But earnings on money held in a ROTH IRA account can eventually be totally tax free to both you and your beneficiaries.

Here is what you need to know about a ROTH IRA -

* You can contribute to a Roth IRA at any age as long as you have earned income from a job or self-employment.   You do not have to stop making contributions at age 70½ if you still have earned income.

* The amount of your allowable contribution to a ROTH IRA is phased out and eventually eliminated based on your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI).  The AGI phase-out range for taxpayers making contributions to a ROTH IRA for 2018 is -

$120,000 - $135,000 = Single and Head of Household
$189,000 - $199,000 = Married Filing Joint and Qualifying Widow(er)
$0 - $10,000 = Married Filing Separate

* You can withdraw your contributions at any time without taxes or penalty.  All withdrawals are considered to come from contributions first.

* You must hold the Roth account for at least five years and be at least 59½ before you can withdraw earnings tax-free and penalty-free.  The 5-year period begins on the first day you make your first ROTH contribution.

* You never have to take any withdrawals from a ROTH IRA in your lifetime.  There are no annual required minimum distributions beginning at age 70½.

As long as you never touch the accumulated earnings on your ROTH IRA investment, and withdraw only your contributions, you can take money from this account at any time over the years without any tax cost.  And your accumulated earnings will grow to a nice retirement nest egg, or legacy for your beneficiaries, if invested wisely.

You have contributed $10,000 to a ROTH IRA, which has accumulated earnings of $2,000.  You need $5,000, or as much as $10,000, to pay for an extraordinary medical bill, or for needed home repairs, or to pay for your child’s college education.  You can take the $5,000 - $10,000 from your ROTH IRA account without any tax consequences.

Contributions to a “traditional” IRA may provide a current tax deduction.  If all of your traditional IRA contributions have been fully deductible then all subsequent withdrawals are fully taxable[R1] .  The amount you can deduct may be phased-out based on your “Modified” Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) if you are an active participant in an employer-sponsored retirement plan such as a 401(k), a 403(b) or an SEP.    

Your “Modified” AGI for purposes of the deduction phase-out begins with “regular” AGI and adds back the-

• foreign income and housing exclusions and deduction,
• savings bond interest exclusion for higher education costs,
• adoption assistance benefits exclusion, and
• deduction for student loan interest.

For 2018, the amount of a contribution to a traditional IRA that can be claimed as a deduction on the tax return of a taxpayer who is an active participant in an employer retirement plan is phased out if Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is -

• $ 63,000 - $73,000 for Single and Head of Household
• $101,000 - $121,000 for Married Filing Joint and Qualifying Widow(er)
• $0 - $10,000 for Married Filing Separate

The deduction on a joint return for a spouse that is not an active participant in an employer plan, but who is married to one who is, phases out at AGI of $189,000 to $199,000.  

If your deduction is limited or totally phased out you can still contribute the maximum amount to an IRA account.  Part of the contribution will be “non-deductible”.  Non-deductible contributions create a “basis” in your IRA investments and part of your future withdrawals will be partially tax free as a “return of basis”.

You can also use IRAs to save for education, as well as excessive medical expenses and buying a home.  Exclusions to the premature withdrawal penalty exist for these types of expenses.

As far as reporting the activity within an IRA account – as I explained in a 2009 post – "What Happens In An IRA Stays In The IRA".   

Younger employees just starting out should definitely opt for the ROTH IRA.  Here are two suggestions for funding IRA contributions if you are starting your first full-time job –

(1) If you have any cash from graduation gifts left over open a ROTH IRA account and use this money to fund your contribution. 

(2) Take an empty coffee can, or other form of “piggy bank”, and put it in your bedroom.  Beginning with the first week of January put $10, $20, or $50 in this “bank” each week.  On January 2nd of the following year take the money that has accumulated in this “bank” and contribute it to your ROTH IRA for that tax year.  Continue this practice for subsequent years.

Here is another good idea – If your son or daughter has a summer or after-school job you should consider opening up a ROTH IRA account for him or her.  Money you give your child for doing chores around the house doesn’t count, but earnings from babysitting or mowing lawns may qualify.

You can contribute 100% of your child’s earnings to the account, up to the $5,500 maximum. If your son earns $2,400 for the summer you can contribute $2,400 to a ROTH IRA for him. If he earns $6,000 you can contribute $5,500.

There is nothing in the Tax Code that says that the money deposited in an IRA for your son or daughter has to come from the child’s funds.  You can use your own money to fund the IRA contribution and let your child keep his earnings.

You can use a ROTH IRA to encourage your children to work or to save. If your son earns $5,000 in a part-time job, open a ROTH IRA for him.  Or, if your daughter agrees to put $2,500 of her salary from a summer job in a ROTH, match it and put in another $2,500 (assuming her total earnings for the year is at least $5,000).

If you put the maximum into a ROTH each year for your 16-year-old from 2018 through 2023, when he/she will turn 21, and no other contributions are ever made, the account could grow to a truly tidy sum (in 6 figures) by the time the child turns 65.  One caveat - there exists a potential problem with opening an IRA account for a child. Once the child reaches the “age of majority,” usually 18, he or she will have full access to all the funds and can “take the money and run.”

One last thing - the earlier in the year you contribute to your, or your children's, ROTH IRA, the more money you will accumulate tax-free at retirement.  So, if not already done, make your 2018 ROTH IRA contribution today, and make your 2019 contribution on January 2nd of 2019.

If you have questions about the Act will affect your specific situation I suggest you consult your, or a, tax professional.  You can begin your search for a tax professional at "Find A Tax Professional".


Tuesday, August 14, 2018


* Have you seen the latest “issue” of THE LAKE REGION SOMETHING yet?  A new “issue” will be posted on August 16th. 

* Michael Cohn identifies another reason that the use of private collection agencies to collect tax debt is truly a very bad idea in “Problems found with security at private tax debt collection agencies” at ACCOUNTING TODAY – (the highlight below is mine)  

The private debt collection agencies that have contracted with the Internal Revenue Service to help collect overdue tax receivables have some security vulnerabilities, according to a new government report.

The report, from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, examined security at the four collection agencies that have been hired by the IRS. A 2015 highway transportation bill, the FAST Act, revived the IRS’s private debt collection program, even though the IRS had twice before shut it down because it ended up costing more money than it brought in and consumers complained of being harassed by the collection agencies.

* It’s that time of year again.  Kelly Phillips Erb, FORBES.COM’s TaxGirl, tells us “IRS Warns TaxpayersTo Remain On Alert For Charitable Scams During Hurricane Season”. 

* Jason Dinesen answers the question “Does My LLC Need a New EIN?” at DINESEN TAX TIMES.

* If you have a free afternoon, and you are interested in the topic, KPE and Tony Nitti (also of FORBES.COM) provide detailed and extensive primers on the newly released IRS regulations on the new Section 199A deduction –


Donald Trump the man is a worthless piece of garbage – self-absorbed, self-important and devoid of character and humanity.

Donald Trump the President is ignorant, incompetent, unstable, and dangerous.

The Trump Presidency is unacceptable. Defending Trump is indefensible.

If the Republican Party is to survive it must denounce and disown Trump.

Any candidate in the upcoming mid-term election who openly supports and defends Trump, and does not openly oppose and denounce him, must be defeated.

If Trump lasts until the 2020 campaign he must be vocally and aggressively opposed in the Republican primaries. He must not be allowed to be the 2020 Republican candidate for President.