Don’t Forget to File Your Foreign Bank Account Return

By:  Amanda Wilson

If you have a foreign bank account (or signatory authority on a foreign bank account), you are required to file a Form 114 (commonly called an FBAR) if at any point during the calendar year the combined balance in all of your foreign accounts exceeds $10,000.  Failure to file the FBAR can result in hefty penalties and even criminal charges.  I previously discussed FBARS here.

Why am I bringing this up again?  Because the filing deadline was moved from June 30th to April 15th, and the government granted all filers an automatic 6 month extension to October 15th.  So if you have not filed your FBAR yet, make sure you do so before October 15th.  The form is filed electronically here.

House Tax Reform Bill – List of Key Provisions

By:  Amanda Wilson

I’ve prepared an article providing a more detailed list of the provisions in the House’s tax reform bill.  It can be found here.

House Tax Reform Bill Released

By:  Amanda Wilson

Today, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Brady introduced the much anticipated House Tax Reform Bill – The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.  The bill is 429 pages, so it will take a little time to digest all the key provisions.  In the meantime, here are a few of the key points:

For individuals:

  • The individual tax rates are reduced from 7 brackets to 4, but the maximum rate remains 39.6%.
  • The standard deductions is approximately doubled for individuals and married couples.
  • Introduces a new family credit, which expands the existing child tax credit.
  • Continues the charitable contribution deduction.
  • Retains the home mortgage interest deduction, but for loans up to $500,000.
  • Continues to allow deduction for state and local property taxes, but only up to $10,000.
  • Retains 401(k) plans.
  • Repeals the much disliked alternative minimum tax for individuals.
  • Doubles the existing estate tax exemption immediately, with a repeal of the estate tax after 6 years.

For businesses:

  • Lowers corporate tax rate to 20%.
  • Lowers maximum tax rate for certain pass-through businesses to 25%.
  • Allows businesses to immediately write-off the full cost of new equipment.
  • Replaces the existing world-wide tax system imposed on corporations with operations overseas.
  • Retains low-income housing tax credits.

Stay tuned for more in-depth discussion of the tax bill.







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