LEVITZACKS, Certified Public Accountants
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Important Accounting Changes on the Horizon that May Impact Your Business...

Click here to read how this change may impact your organization.

Click here to download a summary of the AICPA's Working Group's current issues and their status.

The enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in late 2017 (TCJA) was a game changer.  We are well-versed in what the rules of the TCJA purport to be, but there is still much uncertainty in some of the implementation details.  Guidance from the IRS continues to trickle in and with each installment of pronouncements more planning opportunities become apparent, even as consensus among tax advisors about the “real rules” of the game become more established.  The year-end tax planning guides can provide a general overview of major areas to consider as tailored to Individuals, Investors, and Businesses.  Because we stay focused on continuing developments, including potential legislative changes and IRS pronouncements, we encourage you to both check our website at lz-cpa.com/newsletter.html and contact us about any special areas of your concern.

As a result of the TCJA, payroll withholding tables were revised earlier this year.  In some situations, it may be prudent to revisit your claimed withholding exemptions and our year-end projections can assist in that effort.  In addition, there are enhanced deferral techniques, state tax minimization strategies, novel estate planning techniques that combine estate tax minimization with major income tax savings for future generations, and other great ideas we look forward to sharing as they may apply to your unique situations that we encounter.  As thought leaders, we strive to anticipate the next moves of the game in these and several other areas.

In the meantime, we hope you find this year’s general tax planning brochure beneficial, if nothing more than to spark interest in seeking clarification about how the new and existing rules are applied to you.  We look forward to continuing to provide quality tax preparation and exceptional consulting services.


Tax-Related Portion of the Substance Use–Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act, Enrolled, as Signed by the President on October 24, 2018, P.L. 115-271


Congressional Republicans are looking to move forward with certain legislative tax efforts during Congress’s lame-duck session. The House’s top tax writer, who will hand the reins to Democrats next year, has reportedly outlined several tax measures that will be a priority when lawmakers return to Washington, D.C., during the week of November 12. However, President Donald Trump’s recently touted 10-percent middle-income tax cut does not appear to be one of them.


The Senate Finance Committee’s (SFC) top ranking Democrat has introduced a bill to restore a retirement savings program known as myRA that was terminated by Treasury last year. The myRA program was created by former President Obama through an Executive Order.


A new, 10 percent middle-income tax cut is conditionally expected to be advanced in 2019, according to the House’s top tax writer. This timeline, although largely already expected on Capitol Hill, departs sharply from President Donald Trump’s original prediction that the measure would surface by November.


IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig gave his first speech since being confirmed as the 49th chief of the Service at the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) November 13 National Tax Conference in Washington, D.C. "You’re going to see things [I do] and go, ‘I can’t believe he did that,’" Rettig said.


The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the American Bar Association (ABA) Section of Taxation are urging the IRS to make extensive changes to proposed "transition tax" rules.


Last year’s tax reform created a new Opportunity Zone program, which offers qualifying investors certain tax incentives aimed to spur investment in economically distressed areas. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has predicted that the Opportunity Zone program will create $100 billion in private capital that will be invested in designated opportunity zones.


The IRS is expected to soon release proposed regulations for tax reform’s new business interest limitation. "They are so broad that nearly every domestic taxpayer will be impacted," Daniel G. Strickland, an associate at Eversheds Sutherland, told Wolters Kluwer.


The IRS has released the 2018 optional standard mileage rates to be used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, medical, moving and charitable purposes. Beginning on January 1, 2018, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car, van, pickup of panel truck will be:

  • 54.5 cents per mile for business miles driven (up from 53.5 cents in 2017);
  • 18 cents per mile for medical and moving expenses (up from 17 cents in 2017); and
  • 14 cents per mile for miles driven for charitable purposes (permanently set by statute at 14 cents).

Comment. A taxpayer may not use the business standard mileage rate after using a depreciation method under Code Sec. 168 or after claiming the Code Sec. 179 deduction for that vehicle. A taxpayer may not use the business rate for more than four vehicles at a time. As a result, business owners have a choice for their vehicles: take the standard mileage rate, or “itemize” each part of the expense (gas, tolls, insurance, etc., and depreciation).


The start of a New Year presents a time to reflect on the past 12 months and, based on what has gone before, predict what may happen next. Here is a list of the top 10 developments from 2017 that may prove particularly important as we move forward into the New Year:


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