Tax Updates Archives

Proposed Rules Address 100-Percent Depreciation Deduction

 

Proposed regulations address the new 100-percent depreciation deduction that allows businesses to write off most depreciable business assets in the year they are placed in service.

Background

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) ( P.L. 115-97) amended Code Sec. 168(k) to increase the percentage of the additional first year depreciation deduction from 50 percent to 100 percent for property acquired after September 27, 2017. It also expanded the property eligible for the additional first year depreciation to include certain used depreciable property and certain film, television, or live theatrical productions.

Generally, the 100-percent depreciation deduction generally applies to depreciable business assets with a recovery period of 20 years or less and certain other property. Such assets include in part machinery, equipment, computers, appliances, and furniture.

The proposed regulations provide guidance on what property qualifies for the deduction, and rules for qualified film, television, live theatrical productions and certain plants.

Property of a Specified Type

In order to be considered qualified property, the proposed regulations require that property must be:

  • MACRS property that has a recovery period of 20 years or less;
  • computer software as defined in, and depreciated under, Code Sec. 167(f)(1);
  • water utility property as defined in Code Sec. 168(e)(5);
  • a qualified film or television production as defined in Code Sec. 181(d);
  • a qualified live theatrical production as defined in Code Sec. 181(e); or
  • a specified plant as defined in Code Sec. 168(k)(5)(B) and for which the taxpayer has made an election to apply Code Sec. 168(k)(5)(B).

Qualified improvement property acquired after September 27, 2017, and placed in service after September 27, 2017, and before January 1, 2018, also is qualified property.

Placed-in-Service Date

The proposed regulations provide that qualified property must be placed in service by the taxpayer after September 27, 2017, and before January 1, 2027, or before January 1, 2028, in the case of certain aircraft property described in Code Sec. 168(k)(2)(B) or (C).

For specified plants, if the taxpayer has made an election to apply Code Sec. 168(k)(5), the proposed regulations provide that the specified plant must be planted before January 1, 2027, or grafted before January 1, 2027.

The proposed regulations also provide that a qualified film or television production is treated as placed in service at the time of initial release or broadcast as defined under Reg. §1.181-1(a)(7). Further, a qualified live theatrical production is treated as placed in service at the time of the initial live staged performance.

Acquisition Date

The proposed regulations provide the date of acquisition rules for different types of property, including self-constructed qualified film, television, or live theatrical productions, and specified plants.

Under the proposed regulations, the property must be acquired by the taxpayer after September 27, 2017, or acquired by the taxpayer pursuant to a written binding contract after September 27, 2017. The proposed regulations also provide that property that is manufactured, constructed, or produced for the taxpayer by another person under a written binding contract that is entered into before the manufacture, construction, or production of the property for use by the taxpayer in its trade or business or for its production of income is acquired pursuant to a written binding contract.

For self-constructed property, the proposed regulations provide that the acquisition rules are met if the taxpayer begins manufacturing, constructing, or producing the property after September 27, 2017.

The proposed regulations provide that a qualified film or television production is treated as acquired on the date principal photography commences. Qualified live theatrical production is treated as acquired on the date when all of the necessary elements for producing the live theatrical production are secured. These elements may include a script, financing, actors, set, scenic and costume designs, advertising agents, music, and lighting.

For a specified plant, the proposed regulations provide that the specified plant must be planted after September 27, 2017, or grafted after September 27, 2017, to a plant that has already been planted, by the taxpayer in the ordinary course of the taxpayer’s farming business.

Elections

The proposed regulations provide rules for making the election out of the additional first year depreciation deduction. Taxpayers who elect out of the 100-percent depreciation deduction must do so on a timely-filed return. Those who have already filed their 2017 return and either did not claim the mandatory deduction on qualifying property, or did not elect out but still wish to do so, will need to file an amended return.

Applicable Date

These regulations apply to qualified property placed in service or planted or grafted, as applicable, by the taxpayer during or after the taxpayer’s tax year that includes the date that the regulations are adopted as final. Pending the issuance of the final regulations, a taxpayer may choose to apply the proposed regulations to qualified property acquired and placed in service or planted or grafted, as applicable, after September 27, 2017, by the taxpayer during tax years ending on or after September 28, 2017.

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Where to Enter Your Equity and Proper Use of CASH from Me

  • with a dose of Crazy Advice from an Incompetent CPA

 

Question from Cassandra:

Hi Mike, I’m really enjoying your QuickBooksForInvestors system!!

Here’s my question….

I have heard you say you don’t bother with the Owner Equity account cause you let your CPA deal with that.

From Mike

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Everyone in business must keep records. Among other things, good records will help a business prepare the business tax returns, and will support items reported on tax returns. Taxpayers also must keep their business records available for inspection by the IRS.

In order to claim any deduction, a business owner, like any taxpayer, must prove two things: Click to Access Video or Read More

Yes, the IRS can impose penalties if a tax return is not timely filed or if a tax liability is

This article or video is for members only!

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Federal PATH ACT Provides Planning Opportunities with Permanent Extensions of Many Tax Incentives
After years of routine temporary extensions, Congress has made permanent a number of previously temporary tax breaks for individuals and businesses as well as extending others. The Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (PATH Act), signed into law by President Obama in December, opens the door to new planning opportunities.

 

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Can an S corporation own an interest in another business entity?

An S corporation may own an interest in another business entity.

An S corporation can be a member of an affiliated group by owning 80 percent or more of the stock of a C corporation. The group then can elect to file on a consolidated basis, if other affiliated group rules are met. But the S corporation itself cannot join the consolidated group.

Although in general only individuals can be shareholders in an Click to Access Video or Read More

How Do I? Follow the new-for-2015 one-IRA rollover-per-year limit?

As most people know, a taxpayer can take a distribution from an IRA without being taxed if the taxpayer rolls over (contributes) the amount received into an IRA within 60 days. This tax-free treatment does not apply if the individual rolled over another distribution from an IRA within the one-year period ending on the day of the second distribution.

Taxpayers and the IRS both believed that this one-rollover-per-year limit was applied separately to Click to Access Video or Read More

POST Election Congress Grapples with Extenders as Lawmakers Plan for 2015

The results of the mid-term elections create a new dynamic in Congress with Republicans poised to take control of both the House and Senate in January. Prospects for tax reform may have brightened for 2015. In the meantime, the lame-duck Congress must deal with some urgent tax bills, most notably the tax extenders.

Expired tax breaks

As the 2015 filing season grows closer, lawmakers are under pressure to renew a package of expired tax incentives, known as tax extenders. There are more than 50 expired extenders that impact individuals and businesses. For individuals, some of the most far-reaching are the… Click to Access Video or Read More

Accelerating or Deferring Income / Deductions as Part of a Year End Strategy
 
from Mike Grinnan CPA

The arrival of year end presents special opportunities for most taxpayers to take steps in lowering their tax liability. The tax law imposes tax liability based upon a “tax year.” For most individuals and small business, their tax year is the same as the calendar year. As 2013 year end gets closer, most taxpayers have a more accurate picture of what their tax liability will be in 2013 than at any other time during the current year. However, if you don’t like what you see, you have until year end to make improvements before your tax liability for 2013 is permanently set in stone.

A good part of year-end tax planning involves techniques to accelerate or postpone income or deductions, as your tax situation dictates. Efforts are generally focused on keeping projected tax liability for 2013 slightly lower than that anticipated for 2014, not overweighing projected tax liability for any one year. Having spikes in taxable income in any one tax year puts you in a higher average tax bracket than you would be in if you had evened out the amount of taxable income between the current and subsequent year.

Right to income versus cash receipt

Generally, a cash-basis taxpayer (which includes most individuals) recognizes income when it is received and takes deductions when Click to Access Video or Read More

Taking First Steps for 2013 year-end tax planning

provided by my CPA, J. Michael Grinnan

Even though the calendar still says summer, it’s not too early to be thinking about year-end tax planning. In fact, year-end tax planning has become around-the-year tax planning because of tax legislation (or the lack of tax legislation), new IRS rules and regulations and personal and business considerations. Looking ahead to year-end 2013, there are many tax planning strategies to explore and evaluate.

ATRA brings some certainty

Unlike last year at this time, there is some more certainty to tax planning because of passage of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA). ATRA permanently extended the Bush-era individual income tax rate cuts for most taxpayers but also put in place a top income tax bracket of 39 percent for higher-income taxpayers. In 2012, taxpayers were unsure what the individual rate brackets would be for 2013, which complicated year-end planning. Now, we know the brackets are 10, 15, 25, 28, 33, 35, and 39.6 percent for 2013 and beyond.

ATRA also ended uncertainty over the alternative minimum tax (AMT). Previously, Congress had to pass so-called “AMT patches” to prevent the AMT from encroaching on middle income taxpayers. ATRA patches the AMT for 2013 and subsequent years by increasing the exemption amounts and allowing nonrefundable personal credits to the full amount of the individual’s regular tax and AMT. In the estate tax area, ATRA brings some certainty to tax planning. ATRA set the maximum estate tax rate at 40 percent, provided for portability and more.

Many expiring provisions

ATRA extended – but did not make permanent – countless tax incentives. They range from incentives targeted to individuals, such as the state and local sales tax deduction, the teachers’ classroom expense deduction and the higher education tuition deduction, to incentives for business, including the research tax credit, bonus depreciation, and enhanced small business expensing. In 2012, for the first time in many years, Congress did not extend all of the expiring incentives (leaving, for example, the District of Columbia homebuyer credit to expire). It is possible that Congress could prune the extenders even more in 2013. President Obama has proposed to eliminate many fossil fuel extenders. If Congress keeps to past practice, the fate of the extenders will not be decided until late in 2013, or in early 2014. Late tax legislation means that the IRS will likely have to delay the start of the 2014 filing season. Our office will keep you posted of developments.

Traditional year-end considerations

Traditional year-end planning considerations should not be overlooked. These include changes in filing status due to marriage, death or divorce. Keep in mind also the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which presumably will open the door to married same-sex couples being able to file as married filing jointly (much-anticipated IRS guidance has yet to be issued). Gift-giving is another valuable year-end tool. For 2013, the annual gift tax exclusion is $13,000 ($26,000 for married couples making split-gifts). Qualified individuals can also make a gift to charity from IRA funds, but only through the end of 2013.

If possible, taxpayers may want to project what will be the amount of their 2013 itemized deductions. For some taxpayers, medical expenses may make up a large percentage of their itemized deductions. The floor on deductible medical expenses is 10 percent of adjusted gross income in 2013 (7.5 percent for senior citizens). Others should compare the state and local sales tax deduction (especially taxpayers who have made or may make big ticket purchases in 2013) with the state and local income tax deduction to maximize their savings. Don’t forget the education tax incentives. For 2013, the American Opportunity Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning credit, along with others, are available to qualified taxpayers.

Timing the recognition of capital gains and losses is important, to maximize offsetting short-term gains taxed at ordinary income tax rates, with short-term losses. In 2012, the maximum tax rate on qualified capital gains (and dividends) was 15 percent (with some taxpayers qualifying for a zero percent rate). However, ATRA raises the top rate to 20 percent for certain higher-income taxpayers whose income exceeds the thresholds for the 39.6 percent income tax rate.

Additional business strategies

Along with planning for the extenders and the Affordable Care Act (discussed below) businesses also should be aware of pending revisions to regulations on the capitalization of tangibles (called “repair regs” for short). The rules go far beyond “repairs.” One important ingredient to planning under the repair regs is the provision for de minimis expensing. This rule can be helpful if the tax year in which the cost of qualified materials and supplies is paid or incurred before the tax year of use or consumption.

The window for bonus depreciation is also closing, unless extended by Congress. ATRA extended 50 percent bonus depreciation through 2013 (some transportation and longer period production property may be eligible for 50 percent bonus depreciation through 2014). Qualified property must be placed in service before January 1, 2014 (or January 1, 2015 if applicable).

Employers that want to take advantage of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), with its enhanced benefits for hiring veterans, need to act before January 1, 2013. The WOTC is a popular incentive and is likely to be extended but the provisions for veterans could be changed.

Affordable Care Act

January 1, 2014 is the start date for many provisions of the Affordable Care Act. The Obama administration has Click to Access Video or Read More