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Tax Blawg

Tax Talk for Tax Pros

Introduction

Welcome to TaxBlawg, a resource from Chamberlain Hrdlicka for news and analysis of current legal issues facing tax practitioners. Although blawg.com identifies nearly 1,400 active “blawgs,” including 20+ blawgs related to taxation and estate planning, the needs of tax professionals have received surprisingly little attention.

The Wall Street Journal's Tax Blog gives “tips and advice for filers,” and Paul Caron’s legendary TaxProf Blog is an excellent clearinghouse for academic and policy-oriented news. Yet, tax practitioners still lack a dedicated resource to call their own. For those intrepid souls, we offer TaxBlawg, a forum of tax talk for tax pros.

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Posts from March 2011.

The Government has been aggressively seeking injunctive relief against employers ordering them to timely file the corporation's tax returns and to withhold and pay over federal income taxes and employment taxes.  Most recently, the Government has increased its enforcement efforts in the temporary staffing arena.  On March 17, 2001 in US v. LCL Administration, Inc. the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California granted  the Government's request for a preliminary injunction against LCL, a temporary staffing company, and its officers, ordering them to timely ...

Categories: Employment Tax

For better or worse, many a tax dispute has been won or lost on procedure, often on the question of whether a document - be it a tax return, refund claim, or petition - was timely filed.  The centrality of this issue helps explain the renown of the otherwise unremarkable "mailbox rule" (a.k.a. the "timely-mailing-is-timely-filing rule").

The attached article, published in the International Tax Review, examines a recent case, Dietsche v. Commissioner, in which the Tax Court ruled that a petition mailed from New Zealand and postmarked the day after its due date was not timely filed ...

For interested readers, we have a number of speaking engagements approaching in the next couple of months.

  • Tomorrow (March 23), I will be speaking with Ed Froelich (Morrison & Foerster) and Kristin Hickman (University of Minnesota) on a Strafford webinar about the impact of the Supreme Court's decision in Mayo Foundation.  We will be discussing not only the reasoning behind the decision and its implications for non-regulatory guidance but also specific considerations for taxpayers to deal with heightened deference to Treasury's interpretations of the Internal Revenue Code.
  • On ...

Nowadays, newspapers and tax journals often contain articles about international tax issues, particularly the duty of U.S. persons to file an annual Form TD F 90-22.1 ("FBAR") to report their interests in foreign financial accounts.  As general knowledge of the FBAR increases, the chances of taxpayers avoiding penalties on grounds that they did not act "willfully" decrease. Nevertheless, one recent case fought before both the Tax Court and a federal district court, in United States v. Williams, 09-cv-437 (E.D. Va. 2010), offers support for the notion that where there's no will ...

Following on the heels of the IRS announcement that a problem was identified in the way the first quarter HIRE credit (line 12e) was applied when computing the Failure to Deposit (FTD) penalty on second quarter Forms 941, IRS announced the audit criteria for HIRE Act examinations. John Tuzynski, Chief of Employment Tax Operations, IRS Small Business/Self Employed Division, said an IRS enforcement initiative is under way for employers that claimed tax credits under the HIRE Act.    He indicated that the exams focus on verifying Forms W-11, payroll amounts claimed by employers and ...

Categories: Employment Tax

Much confusion has existed over the past few years about filing Form TD F 90-22.1 ("FBAR") to report foreign accounts to the IRS.  To remedy this, the IRS issued pronouncements in 2009 and 2010 granting certain FBAR filing exemptions and penalty waivers.  Many of these benefits had retroactive effect.  A recent criminal case, United States v. Simon, calls into question the validity of the IRS pronouncements.  By holding that the U.S. Department of Justice may pursue criminal prosecutions in situations where the IRS publicly indicated that it would not even assert civil penalties, this ...