• Charitable Lead Annuity Trust/Grantor Trust

    By:
    G. Dean Goodwin, CLU, AEP
    |
    May 1, 2015

    A CLAT / Grantor Trust provides the best of both worlds; an immediately income tax deductible charitable donation and tax-free income for children and a legacy for grandchildren.

  • Choices for Taxpayers with Unreported Foreign Assets: Voluntary Disclosure, Streamlined Submission, or Run Away and Hide?

    By:
    Bryan C. Skarlatos, Esq.
    |
    Apr 1, 2015

    Recently, many tax return preparers have learned that a number of their clients failed to report their interest in a foreign bank account, corporation or trust to the IRS.  Because the Foreign Asset Tax Compliance Act requires foreign financial institutions to report their U.S. depositors to the IRS, the IRS is more likely to discover non-reporting taxpayers.  Furthermore, in light of more stringent reporting requirements, recent publicity and IRS enforcement action focused on non-reporters of foreign assets, all tax preparers should ask their clients whether they have failed to report foreign assets to the IRS.  When a practitioner learns of a client’s unreported foreign assets, what should he or she do?  

  • Common Traps To Avoid When Making Section 754 Elections

    By:
    Randy Schwartzman, CPA, MST; Jeffrey Bilsky, CPA; Patricia Brandstetter, JD, LL.M.
    |
    Apr 1, 2015

    Generally, a partnership seeking to adjust the basis of partnership property upon the transfer of an interest under Section 743(b), or following a distribution under Section 734(b), must have a valid Section 754 election in place. Although a seemingly simple election, it is not uncommon that a partnership intending to make a valid Section 754 election inadvertently fails to satisfy all of the regulatory requirements. Under those circumstances, however, there may be limited recourse available to the partnership to pursue corrective action.

  • Household Employment Issues: How to Keep Your Clients Compliant

    By:
    Guy Maddalone
    |
    Apr 1, 2015

    As it relates to household employment, state, local and federal tax laws as well as relevant state and local labor laws are often overlooked or misunderstood. To avoid making a costly error, it is important to understand current tax and labor law and to follow it appropriately. 

  • Estate Tax Planning After ATRA: What’s Left?

    By:
    Joseph Septimus and Tara Thompson Popernik
    |
    Apr 1, 2015

    For the overwhelming majority of US taxpayers, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 ("ATRA") eliminated the need for federal estate tax planning. It did so by making the $5 million applicable exemption amount (indexed for inflation) permanent. Additionally, in April 2014, the New York State estate tax exemption increased, so fewer New York taxpayers would need state estate tax planning. 

  • Capitalizing on the Repair Regulations

    By:
    STEWART BERGER, CPA
    |
    Mar 1, 2015
    After several years of study, the IRS has finalized regulations known as the Tangible Property Regulations or the Repair Regulations.
  • Obama’s Budget Proposal to Tax Unrepatriated Foreign Earnings

    By:
    LISA S. GOLDMAN, CPA, AND THOMAS V. RUTA, CPA
    |
    Mar 1, 2015
    President Obama’s 2016 Budget contains a proposal to end "deferral” of tax on income earned in Controlled Foreign Corporations (CFC).
  • New York Residency Audits: Defending Foreign Domicile Changes

    By:
    JACK TRACHTENBERG, JD, ESQ. and JENNIFER S. GOLDSTEIN, JD, ESQ.
    |
    Mar 1, 2015
    Generally, to establish a change of domicile, a taxpayer must demonstrate a change of lifestyle such that the taxpayer’s subjective intent to make a new location his or her permanent home is substantiated by objective evidence.
  • Virtual Currency Exchange Accounts, Hosted Wallet Services, and Vault Services Located Abroad May Trigger FBAR Filing Requirements

    By:
    Keith Miller, Richard Peterson and Joseph Cutler
    |
    Feb 1, 2015
    As the title suggests, there remains an open question as to whether virtual currency accounts, hosted wallet services and vault services located abroad may trigger FBAR filing requirements. Based on case law and the probability of FinCEN deciding to treat virtual currency the same as money, it appears likely that the FBAR filing requirements applicable to monetary accounts will also be applied to accounts funded with virtual currency.
  • Increased Enforcement of State Abandoned Property Laws

    By:
    Joseph Endres
    |
    Feb 1, 2015
    All 50 states, the District of Columbia and three Canadian provinces have abandoned property laws on their books. These laws are intended to safeguard the abandoned property of the jurisdiction’s citizens, who, for some reason, have failed to claim the property from the businesses holding it.
  • Private & Non-Profit Company Directors and Officers Insurance

    By:
    Brian Weiss
    |
    Feb 1, 2015
    Although directors and officers of private and not-for-profit companies face similar liability exposures as do their publicly traded corporation counterparts, they often view their risks as being of a much lesser degree. Therefore, it is common for these companies not to have adequate directors and officers (“D&O”) insurance.
  • Charitable Solicitation Across State Lines: What You Need To Know When Your Charity Clients Engage in Multi-State Fundraising Activities

    By:
    Seth Perlman, Esq. and Tracy L. Boak, Esq.
    |
    Feb 1, 2015
    Currently, 45 states, as well as the District of Columbia have some degree of statutory regulation of charitable solicitation activity conducted within their borders. Many, although not all states, require registration and reporting.
  • Dealing with Virtual Currency? Taxation, Reporting FBARs, and FATCA Worries

    By:
    Keith Miller, Richard Peterson and Joseph Cutler
    |
    Jan 1, 2015
    You or your client decide to jump into the exciting but volatile world of Bitcoin and virtual currencies. What are some of the most important tax-related implications of dealing in virtual currency, and what are the hidden reporting requirements associated with such transactions?
  • Employment Law Updates in New York City and State

    By:
    Jonathan A. Wexler, Esq., and Kaitlyn Fallon, Esq.
    |
    Jan 1, 2015
    As discussed in Part I, which appeared in the November 2014 TaxStringer, New York State, New York City, and New Jersey have enacted various statutes that have changed the employment landscape for both employers and employees.
  • The Value of Using Irrevocable Trusts in Medicaid Planning

    By:
    Louis Lepore, Esq.
    |
    Jan 1, 2015
    If a potential Medicaid recipient desires to qualify for benefits, but yet preserve his or her assets within the family, he or she must gift those assets away. After a 5-year lookback period, the transferred assets are no longer countable for purposes of determining the recipient’s eligibility for Medicaid benefits. This raises the question of whether the form of the gift should be an outright gift or a transfer to an irrevocable trust for the benefit of the family member(s).
  • Gaied Decision: Upon Video Review, Case Closed

    By:
    Timothy Noonan, JD, and Joshua Lawrence
    |
    Dec 1, 2014
    We know what you are thinking. Another article on the Gaied case? By now anyone who follows New York tax developments to any degree has seen articles analyzing the New York Court of Appeals’ landmark decision on New York’s residency rules.
  • NYS Department of Taxation & Finance Announces Latest Policy Concerning Sales Tax Treatment of Scaffolding

    By:
    David A. Shuster, JD, LLM
    |
    Dec 1, 2014
    Just like a midtown Manhattan city block, the NYS Tax Department’s position concerning the application of the state’s sales tax rules to scaffolding transactions appears to be continually under construction.  On October 23, 2014, the Department issued TSB‑M‑14(15)S to clarify its policy in this area.
  • Qualified Longevity Annuity Contracts – Something New Under the Sun

    By:
    Bruce Resnik, JD, CPA/PFS
    |
    Dec 1, 2014
    On July 2, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service promulgated new regulations to the Internal Revenue Code which permitted the use of a new type of deferred annuity contract called a “Qualified Longevity Annuity Contract” (QLAC) to be used in conjunction with tax-qualified defined contribution plans and IRA’s. The purpose of the regulations was to make the purchase of lifetime annuities more attractive within retirement plans and help individuals to secure lifetime guaranteed monthly income no matter how long they live.
  • Introducing the New York State Throwback Tax

    By:
    Kevin Matz, JD, LLM, CPA
    |
    Dec 1, 2014
    On April 1, 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law several provisions affecting estate planning and trusts as part of the New York State Executive Budget. Although most of the attention has focused on the New York estate tax law changes, the new law ushered in significant changes in the income taxation of trusts as well.
  • Updates in Employment Law in the Greater New York Area

    By:
    Jonathan A. Wexler, Esq., and Kaitlyn Fallon, Esq.
    |
    Nov 1, 2014
    New York City and New Jersey have recently enacted several statutes that impose various obligations on employers who do business in those jurisdictions. These provisions include additional employment protection for pregnant employees or those affected by pregnancy, protection for victims of domestic or sexual violence, and protection for job applicants with a criminal history.

 
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