“FAKE IRS” scams happen too often…

Post By Glenn Frank

Nobody likes to be scammed.  And everyone has a fear of the IRS.  The world is full of fraud and IRS fakers are no different.  In the past this might have been much more easy to identify.  In today’s work this is big business and the efforts put out by the fraudsters can easily fool even the smartest among us.  So knowing how to tell if it is really the IRS can be helpful.

The IRS will […]

States May Delay Refunds to Help Prevent Taxpayer Identity Theft

 

Post By William Thomas

DC posted a short note about potential delays is processing refunds to their new MyTax.DC.gov blog. The purpose is to “safeguard tax dollars and combat identity theft.” Taxpayer identity theft is rampant across the country and an issue many jurisdictions face – both the IRS and states across the union. While many taxpayers do not wish for their refunds to be delayed, these jurisdictions are taking measures to ensure the refunds are issued to the correct taxpayer, which takes […]

Is Your Plan Still Paying Benefits to Deceased Pensioners?

Post By Zack Podrasky

One of the most important aspects of pension payments is the timely ceasing of benefits when a participant dies. The state of Illinois found this out the hard way. Between 2010 and 2014, some of the largest pension funds in Illinois incorrectly paid approximately 400,000 deceased pensioners over $3.5 million in benefits. Although some funds were eventually recovered, Plans should have policies and procedures in place to avoid this difficult and costly situation. This is why […]

FinCEN Form 114 Due Date Change

 

Post By Jobe Dupre

Are you a U.S. person with a financial interest in or signature authority over a foreign financial account? In other words, do you have or have authority over a bank account in a foreign country? If so, you should be aware of the foreign reporting required, specifically the filing of FinCEN Form 114.

If the aggregate value of this foreign financial account exceeds $10,000 at any time during the year, you must file a FinCEN Form 114. Prior […]

Know Your Auto (Expenses):  Actual Versus Standard Mileage Rate Methods

Post By Scott Reddersen 

If you use your car for business purposes as a self-employed taxpayer or as an employee, you generally can deduct related expenses.  You have two methods from which to choose: the standard mileage rate, or actual car expenses incurred.

If you own your car and wish to use the standard mileage rate, you must utilize this method in the first year the car is available for use in the business.  In subsequent years, you can choose to use […]

Administrative Expenses: Whose Alligator Boots are You Buying?

 Post By Emily Hewitt 

In federal court the former vice chairman of ABC-Mart pled guilty to committing fraud for a period that lasted longer than six years. John Smith was convicted of fraud for embezzlement, theft of gift cards and merchandise and unauthorized use of the company’s credit card for personal purchases. How can we and ABC-Mart learn from this nightmare?

Mr. Smith was allegedly involved in creating dummy vendors and invoices and coercing subordinates to approve expenses without support. He would […]

IRS Warns About W-2 Phishing Scam

Post By Sean Urbany

Late last week, the Internal Revenue Service issued an urgent warning related to a recent spike in email phishing scams. The statement warns about a specific scam where cybercriminals are disguising their email address as to appear as an executive from the targeted organization. The cybercriminal then sends an email to individuals in the human resources or payroll departments of the organization requesting copies of all employee Form W-2s. The IRS indicates that this scam is […]

SOC 1 Reports – Why You Need Them

Post by: Ashleigh Hall
What are SOC 1 Reports?
A Service Organization Controls (SOC) Report describes the design of the internal controls at a service provider (SP).  There are multiple kinds (SOC 1, SOC 2, SOC 3), however, the SOC 1 report is the most likely one to apply to your organization.  There are also 2 types of SOC 1 reports; a Type 1 report describes the SP’s internal control structure.  A Type 2 report goes another step.  The firm engaged to […]

Kentucky Becomes Right-To-Work State

On January 9, 2017, Kentucky enacted law making it a right-to-work state, effective immediately.  The Kentucky law is prospective, applying to all new contracts and those renewed or extended after 1/9/17.  The law also includes a special provision that prohibits public sector employees from strikes or work stoppages and requires the public sector employees’ written consent in order to deduct dues or similar payments from their pay.
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IRS Releases Income Thresholds, Benefit And Contribution Amounts For 2017

Post by: Veronica Calvo

For 2017, the cost-of-living adjustments increased the dollar limitations on benefits and contributions. The amounts are listed below per type of retirement plan.

 
Cost Of Living Adjustments

 IRA’s

IRA Contribution Limit | $5,500
IRA Catch-Up Contribution (Age 50+) | $1,000

 401(k), 403(b), Profit-Sharing Plans, etc.                  

Elective Deferrals | $18,000
Catch-up Contributions (Age 50+) | $6,000

 SEP

SEP Maximum Contribution | $54,000

 Other

457 Elective Deferrals | $18,000

The IRS also made changes to the phase-out income thresholds for taxpayers who contribute […]