Ask TaxMama Issue 561 – Hot Dog!

Happy National Hot Dog Month!

Dear Family,

Never make the mistake of answering the phone in the morning when you’re on deadline. Once you start, you just can’t stop. Usually, I have the phones turned off Friday morning, so I can produce a delightful, upbeat, interesting issue for you.

Instead, let’s see…one women got a notice from IRS about a balance due – it turns out that she left her son’s Social Security Number off the original tax return. We had been talking to her earlier in the week about helping her write a letter to IRS. But it occurred to Lulu that she might be able to solve the problem with a phone call. Just get to a place where there is a fax handy, with a nice, clean, visible photocopy of her son’s Social Security card and some proof of his age…then call IRS and fax it to someone  – perhaps they can fix the problem on the phone? It’s worth a try.

Earlier this week, I was listening to the IRS Phone Seminar on Correspondence Audits – that’s where they send you those notices about errors on your tax returns, or conduct full-blown audits by mail. One of the biggest complaints people had was trying to reach someone on the phone. First of all, it takes forever. Then, when you do reach someone, you can’t ever get the same person twice. It’s like IRS’s general public call center. It seems that no one is specifically assigned to work the case. Each step is handled by a different person – and some of them are completely ignorant about tax law. They seem to resist providing the caller with supervisor contact information. However, the IRS presenter did say that the staff in the Correspondence Audit units are supposed to take such messages to supervisors or managers immediately. The manager is meant to call back the same day. We’ll see. Oh yes, and the other complaint – they lose information – or the documents you send in never seem to find their way to your file. The tax professional community is not happy with the way these audits/examinations are handled.

There are better and easier, and faster ways to deal with these communications. IRS should develop the resources of their e-services system to accomodate these communications.

Speaking of communications, the Homebuyers Credit filings seem to be a part of this unit. There are still lots of problems with the filings. We are hearing from people who filed in early April and IRS still does not have a record of RECEIVING their tax return (sent with a tracking number showing IRS received it on April 6th). If you want to know how to navigate your way through the treacherous process of getting that refund, join me on July 28th, as I teach you all about the Homebuyers’ Credits, how to get them faster,  how to deal with the rejection letters, and who does qualify despite IRS rejecting them.

Incidentally, if you want a 10% discount, register from here:

EA Class News
People are loving the class! Of course, more people are passing Part 1. One person admitted that he felt compelled to stop overstudying and take the exam because of peer pressure – his friends were taking it and passing. So he took it and passed too!

This weekend, our esteemed leader is Roger B. Adams, EA, teaching all the way from Portugal.

Upcoming Events

July 21, 2010 at 2:00 pm ET
Pressent by IRS OPR
Office of Professional Responsibility & Circular 230: Overview, Procedures and Priorities
Learn about Current and future jurisdiction; Complaint process; Alternative disciplinary notices;     Possible sanctions; OPR areas of focus

August 19, 2010 at 8:00 am – 9:00 am PT
The next Tax Roundtable is next month. Will you be joining us?
At the last meeting – we covered a lot topics – you can tune in, the replay is here:
Just scroll down to July’s event.

September 9, 2010  at 2:00 pm ET
Pressent by IRS SB/SE Division
The Affordable Care Act – Learn about the tax provisions of recent health care legislation
Learn about Current tax provisions, What IRS is doing to educate the public, Where to find future updates
Upcoming on CPE LINK – with CPE for CPAs, EAs, and more

July 28 at 1:00pm PT
Homebuyers Credits for Tax Professionals
The specific laws related to your clients.
How to get it rigth the first time. What to watch out for.
And how to overcome IRS Rejections.

September 1 at 12:00pm PT
Doing Tax Research Online for Free
Identify reliable sources of tax information,
how to use them and understand them.
Other TaxMama News:

At Equifax this week, you learn how what to do if you can’t pay the IRS; Ilyce helps you out with short sales and such; Dan explains the volatility index and sets your fears to rest; Linda explains the truth about Workers Compensation coverage; and Robin explains your credit report.
This week has been so busy that I haven’t updated my blog. But it will be about the Taxpayers Advocate’s report.
One of the more interesting stories is about the Goldman-Sachs settlement.
In Money Funnies this week, we get inspired by an old farmer.

In IRS News, IRS has a Special Assistance Day for Gulf Oil Spill Victims this weekend. And we learn about tax benefits for job seekers.
In TaxQuips this week TaxMama gives you 5 tips to reduce your tax anxiety. We help Ericka deal with all those years of unfiled tax returns; Leigh at H&R Block gives us tips on how to deal with online winnings; We end the weeking learning how to spot addicts in your life and help them.
Do you know which of your employees qualify for the HIRE act? Or about the extenders bill in the House that will change the way your S Corporation operates? Or about the electronic filing mandate for all tax professionals? You would know all this and more – if you read the TaxQueries Blogs!

As always, we love your feedback, opinions and ideas.
You are what makes all this fun – and interesting!

Please use the Comments link online.

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Hugs from your favorite TaxNerd,*

Eva Rosenberg, EA

Your TaxMama®  is watching…out for you.

07/15/2010 Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
08/02/2010 2nd Quarter Payroll Taxes Due
08/02/2010 Employer’s Deposit Federal Unemployment (FUTA) 
08/02/2010 Employers File Annual Return for Employee Benefits Plan 5500
08/02/2010 Employers File Annual Return for Employee Benefits Plan 5500-EZ
08/02/2010 Employers File request for Extension filing Employee Benefits Plan Return
08/02/2010 2nd Quarter Federal Excise Tax Return & Payment Voucher
08/16/2010 Employers Make Monthly Payroll tax deposit on the 15th of each month
08/31/2010 Time for businesses to consider setting up retirement plans

From TaxMama® to You!

Follow TaxMama®’s Tweets –

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.

Download TaxMama’s 2010 iphone Tax Calendar. My gift to you.

Never miss a tax deadline again!
The customizable tax calendar is here.
Add or Remove dates. Add your own reminders – get alerts.


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Take TaxMama®’s 2010 EA Exam Review Class 

Class is going strong.

Part 2 is going strong.
This weekend we cover Business Income and Expenses

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