Ask TaxMama Issue 615 – Welcome to Autumn

by on September 23, 2011

Dear Family, 

This week, there’s a lot of activity in the Legislature and on the Market, but nothing definitive to discuss here. On the other hand, I visited a junior college earlier in the week (see Thursday’s TaxQuips e-mailed newsletter) and was faced with the college’s dwindling budget. They reported that they have been forced to cut their course offerings by 15% due to budget cuts.

Yet, they were very excited about my news about enrolled agents, and the new Registered Tax Return Preparer exam that IRS is launching next month. Courses for exam preparation can be offered in their extension or community system, instead of in the regular curriculum. To an administration-bound entity, it means less red tape, faster approval processes – and the ability to charge somewhat higher fees for community courses than the degree courses. (Remember, state junior colleges tend to charge very little for college-credit courses, perhaps less than $40/unit. While colleges and universities charge thousands of dollars per semester, a jr. college charges hundreds.)

One of the issues they can address is the need for live, in-person courses to help people prepare for tax examinations. Although I do a pretty good job here on online, and the students who join me from their homes and offices have a lot of fun, it’s not the same as being in a room with a professor and other students. People are social animals. In-person, tangible courses are sorely needed. So, I will help them develop a course to compete with my online course. (Am I being foolish? Nah. People do need something like this.)

 Speaking of courses, I realized last night, while I was teaching the session on collections, that it simply cannot go into nearly as much depth as tax pros need in order to work with clients who are in trouble. So, the Tax Practice Series really do provide more detail and more guidance on how to make the system work for taxpayers in trouble. The series is on sale until the end of today – 50% off. You can use the courses to help clients, if you are a tax professional. But if you’re a taxpayer, the courses are in plain English. You will get enough out of the information presented to help resolve your own tax problems – or that of your friend, lover, or spouse. 

In IRS News today, IRS is offering a voluntary compliance program for employers who have been treating their employees as freelancers.  I have been talking to the IRS and to others – and will be giving you a report next week Tune in my September Tax Watch column. In other news, the watchdog agency that oversees IRS (think of them as IRS’ IRS), the office of the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) has just released a report about IRS’s toll-free telephone operations.  

In today’s Money Funnies & Inspiration, I give a quiz. We old fogies should have no problem. But you young whipper-snappers? Well….we’ll see. Put on Your Thinking Cap.

A Week of TaxMama’s TaxQuips

Sign on Bonus Today TaxMama hears from Valoree in the Tax Quips Forum with this question. “My client received a sign-on bonus of $30,000. He worked awhile for the company, but left before the contract was up. He got a loan to pay back the $30,000 – and paid about $2,400.00 in interest. Is it possible to deduct [...] Read the full article →

Fiance’s Financial Fiasco    Today TaxMama hears from Sandra in the Tax Quips Forum with a quick question. “My soon-to-be spouse has a mountain of back tax debt. Can this affect me in any way or my property? I live in Missouri. He also has terrible credit.” Read the full article →

 

New College Student  Today TaxMama hears from Vera in the Tax Quips Forum with a question that affects many families. “I am a single parent claiming HOH. My son went off to college for September 1st, 2011. Until then he lived here with me, worked and also attended college here. We always filed separately with me being HOH. [...] Read the full article →  

2 Heads of Households Today TaxMama hears from Nora in the Tax Quips Forum with a common situation. “Two single taxpayers decide to share a home (let’s say a rental) and each has qualifying children.  Each maintains their own family expenses and share equally the cost of household expenses.  Can each claim HOH status? If so, would claiming two [...] Read the full article   

Small Business Taxes Made Easy

The new, award-winning Small Business Taxes Made Easy is getting lots of attention.  Andrew collected some of the reviews and awards generated by this book.      

This week’s question for you – How can your business you write off the entire cost of your family’s medical care, including health insurance?

Read Chapter 10 of Small Business Taxes Made Easy to learn the secret.

TaxMama’s Registered Tax Return Preparer Exam Review Class  

TaxMama has an 8-hour course designed to help you pass this exam if you feel you need one. However, I advise you to take the exam without paying for any course at all, first.Then, if you still have trouble – come to me! I am customizing key parts of the EA Exam Part 1 course, just for you! Price will be only $99. The live, online course will run two hours per morning, from Nov 1 – Nov 4. It will be recorded, so you can learn it as a self-study course, as well. Reserve your spot NOW! 

TaxMama’s EA Exam Review Class  

Do you want to know more about the IRS Special Enrollment Examination? Please replay Everything you Ever Wanted to Know about the EA Exam.

This week, TaxMama’s students learned all about Audits, Appeals and more.

Learn more about Taxmama’s EA Exam Review Course

Here’s what one student just said about this class:

I must say this is by far the best tax class I have ever taken! Every penny was worth it!! You go through such efforts to make sure we understand what we’re doing and make the busiest days of our tax lives easier and comforting if we’re lost and need direction. I’m very happy to be apart of your class! 

Ilknur D.

There is still time to sign up for TaxMama’s EA Exam Review Course   There is a Family Member discount of 10%.

 CPE-Link – The IRS Practice Series is now a Self-Study course – or a do it yourself course!   http://www.cpelink.com/teamtaxmama  

New classes coming soon:

Nov 10             11:00am-1:00pm (Pacific)      How Innocent is Your Spouse? 

Nov 16             9:00am-11:00am (Pacific)            Top 10 Tax Changes for 2011Filing

Dec 14                        9:00am-11:00am (Pacific)            Top 10 Tax Changes for 2011Filing

Jan 13, 2012   9:00am-11:00am (Pacific)      Top 10 Tax Changes for 2011 Filing

 Incidentally, if there is anything else you’d like to learn more about, please let me know. We’ll develop the classes for you. 

TaxMama Interviews

The ABA Journal and US News and World Reports…well, those won’t appear for a few more weeks.

There is another quote in Liz Weston’s MSN.com Money column
http://money.msn.com/home-loans/should-you-rent-out-a-room-weston.aspx?

TaxMama Writing:

This week’s Equifax article is  -  Paying Taxes While Living Abroad

AccountingWeb Blog is In For a Pound - a review of a fun new book by Donald Korn.

This month’s MarketWatch article -will be about IRS’s new Voluntary compliance program for employers.
You can find daily TaxQuips into YouTube videos
http://www.youtube.com/taxmama1#p/u

As always, we love your feedback, opinions and ideas.

You are what makes all this fun – and interesting!  

Please use the Comments link online.

http://taxmama.com/asktaxmama/ask-taxmama-issue-615                         

TaxNerd gear makes a bold statement year-round.

It helps attract the opposite sex!

Shop at www.taxnerd.net  or http://www.zazzle.com/taxmama*  

Hugs from your favorite TaxNerd,

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Eva Rosenberg, EA

Your TaxMama®

www.TaxMama.com

 Your TaxMama®  is watching…out for you. 

www.TaxMama.com

www.TaxMama.com/TaxQuips

www.IRSExams.com 

www.TaxNerd.net

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TAX CALENDAR

http://taxmama.com/tax-calendar-2011/

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  • 09/30/2011 Last day to establish SIMPLE plans for current year
  • 09/30/2011 Time for businesses to consider setting up retirement plans
  • 10/17/2011 Personal Returns due – Nonresident, US income, etc.FINAL DEADLINE
  • 10/17/2011 Personal Returns due – Easy – Final Deadline
  • 10/17/2011 Personal Returns due – Not Itemizing – Final Deadline
  • 10/17/2011 Deadline for Schedule C filer to fund SEP-IRAs for previous year.
  • 10/17/2011 Net Operating Loss – Eligible Small Business carry back loss
  • 10/17/2011 US Gift and Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax Return – Final Deadline
  • 10/17/2011 Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
  • 10/17/2011 Employers File Annual Return for Employee Benefits Plan 5500
  • 10/17/2011 Employers File Annual Return for Employee Benefits Plan 5500-EZ
  • 10/31/2011 3rd Quarter Payroll Taxes Due
  • 10/31/2011 Employer’s Deposit Federal Unemployment (FUTA)
  • 10/31/2011 3rd Quarter Federal Excise Tax Return & Payment Voucher – Form 720

 

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From TaxMama® to You!

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Follow TaxMama®’s Tweets – http://twitter.com/TaxMama  

 

You are invited to put a TaxQuips Widget on your phone, social networking page, website, or… You’ll get the TaxQuips as soon as they published – long before they are distributed in by e-mail. It’s a nifty gadget. Just pick up the code and paste into your site or application.

http://www.widgetbox.com/widget/taxmamas-taxquips-daily-tax-podcasts

 

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SPECIAL DEALS

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NOLO answers the question –

What can I do if my spouse gets into debt – do I owe his/her debts? 

(disclosure – TaxMama receives a commission) 

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Great for promotions – and to gear up for tax season! 

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(They have clothes and novelties – and all sizes) 

They do a gorgeous job. 

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EA EXAM NEWS & SOLVING THE TAX PUZZLE

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Take TaxMama®’s 2011 EA Exam Review Class

http://irsexams.com/   

Last night, TaxMama’s students learned all about audits and appeals.

There is still time to sign up for TaxMama’s EA Exam Review Course  

Replay the session -

Everything You Wanted to Know About the EA Exam 

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