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Minneapolis Tax Law Blog

Minnesota Legislature considers tax bill: pros and cons

Minnesota lawmakers are considering a new tax law. The tax char of the Minnesota Senate proposed the law. The law, titled SF 4010, would result in a decrease in the individual income tax and corporate franchise tax by one-tenth of one percent in the event revenues exceed expenditures.

Is this a novel concept? The reduction of the income tax with a budget surplus is not an innovative idea. As noted in a recent piece by Minnesota Public Radio News, 11 states have a similar system in place.

Did the IRS website crash on Tax Day impact your filings?

Tax Day is stressful enough without a massive computer glitch. Unfortunately, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website experienced a glitch on Tuesday, April 17. The glitch resulted in an error message for anyone that logged on with the intention of filing their taxes. Instead of filing with ease, the filer would receive a message that stated the IRS website was undergoing a “planned outage” that would run from April 17, 2018 through December 31, 9999.

The agency blames “system issues” and gave tax payers an extra day to file their taxes.  

Avoid these common audit triggers

Taxes are due within the next couple of days and the pressure of getting taxes in on time can result in errors. It is important to slow down and avoid errors as some of these errors can lead to a closer look by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

The stress of meeting the tax deadline will likely pale in comparison to the stress that comes with being the subject of a tax audit. Reduce this risk by avoiding these top mistakes:

Make the most of these 3 tax deductions before they disappear

The new tax law has led to a number of changes in the tax structure in the United States. The changes went into effect in 2018 and will impact the 2018 tax filings. This means you can still make the most of the previous tax structure for your 2017 filings.

Two ways your pet may qualify for a tax deduction

It turns out man’s best friend can offer more than snuggles and entertaining fodder for You Tube videos. In some situations, your canine companion can offer tax benefits. Two specific examples include:

  • Service. Dogs that are used as service animals can qualify for certain tax deductions. It is important that the animal be a designated service animal to qualify. An example would include a dog used as a seeing eye dog or to help with other disability or medical needs. If so, expenses connected to the animal are likely eligible for a tax deduction. This can include food and vet services.

Unforeseen impact of new tax law: Will baseball take a hit?

The new tax law is supposed to be good for Americans. Yet, in an interesting twist, it could have a devastating impact on America’s favorite pastime.

How could the tax law impact baseball? A publication from Minnesota Public Radio recently addressed the potential for a problem. The issue involves the definition of a single term: “real.”

Minnesota state taxes and foreign income: Impact of new tax law

Tax planning strategies can reduce a business’ tax obligations. One example involves keeping certain assets overseas. If the asset returned to the United States, a tax would be due. An asset that remained abroad was not subject to this tax.

A provision within the new tax law attempts to end this practice. Essentially, it requires businesses bring these assets back to the United States. In exchange for moving these assets back, the business will then have up to eight years to pay the tax bill that comes with the return of these assets to the United States. This translates to 15.5 percent tax on cash assets and 8 percent on noncash investments.

Should you consider an Offer in Compromise with the IRS?

An Offer in Compromise (OIC) is one options that anyone struggling with tax debt may take into consideration. This option is basically an agreement between the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and a taxpayer where the taxpayer offers the IRS a payment lower than the tax obligation. The IRS accepts the payment and forgives the remaining tax balance.

Why would the IRS agree to such a deal? In some instances, the agency can rationalize that some payment is better than none.

Jack Daniel’s v. Uncle Sam: Tax audit leads to a fight with bite

What do Jack Daniel’s, whiskey barrels, and small businesses in Minnesota have in common? More than you may think at first glance. One of the nation’s largest whiskey makers is taking on its local legislature to ensure a tax issue is resolved before it becomes a big problem.

A problem that could impact more than just massive distilleries.

3 times itemization may save you more than the standard deduction

One common question during tax time: should I itemize my deductions or take the standard deduction? The answer for each taxpayer will depend on the details of his or her tax obligations and potential deductions, but three things that often indicate itemization may save you more money include:

  • High income. High earners can benefit from itemization based on simple math. A person in the 33 percent tax bracket can save twice as much as one in the 15 percent tax bracket on the same itemized deduction. A piece in USA Today notes that in many cases, anyone that earns over $80,000 annually could benefit.

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