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.


On July 1, President Trump signed into law a sweeping, bipartisan IRS reform bill called the Taxpayer First Act ( P.L. 116-25). This legislation aims to broadly redesign the IRS for the first time in over 20 years.


The House has approved a bipartisan repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) so-called "Cadillac"excise tax on certain high-cost insurance plans.


The IRS has released final regulations that clarify the employment tax treatment of partners in a partnership that owns a disregarded entity.


Final regulations allow employers to voluntarily truncate employees’ social security numbers (SSNs) on copies of Forms W-2, Wage and Tax Statement, furnished to employees. The truncated SSNs appear on the forms as IRS truncated taxpayer identification numbers (TTINs). The regulations also clarify and provide an example of how the truncation rules apply to Forms W-2.


IRS final regulations provide rules that apply when the lessor of investment tax credit property elects to pass the credit through to a lessee. If this election is made, the lessee is generally required to include the credit amount in income (50 percent of the energy investment credit). The income is included in income ratably over the shortest MACRS depreciation period that applies to the investment credit property. No basis reduction is made to the investment credit property.


Effective July 17, 2019, the list of preventive care benefits that can be provided by a high deductible health plan (HDHP) without a deductible or with a deductible below the applicable minimum deductible is expanded. The list now includes certain cost effective medical care services and prescription drugs for certain chronic conditions.


The continuity safe harbor placed-in-service date deadlines for the investment tax energy credit (Code Sec. 48) and the renewable electricity production credit (Code Sec. 45(a)) may be tolled if a construction delay is caused by national security concerns raised by the Department of Defense (DOD).


The Treasury and IRS have issued proposed regulations on provisions dealing with passive foreign investment companies (PFICs). Proposed regulations published on April 25, 2015, also have been withdrawn ( NPRM REG-108214-15).


Proposed regulations would provide an exception to the unified plan rule for multiple employer plans (MEPs). The purpose is to reduce the risk of plan disqualification due to noncompliance by other participating employers. The regulations would apply on or after the publication date of final regulations in the Federal Register. They cannot be relied upon until then. Comments and requests for a public hearing must be received by October 1, 2019.


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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