DiSabatino CPA Blog

DiSabatino CPA Blog

A blog by Michael DiSabatino CPA with topics on Tax Savings, Business, Management and more...

Be Sure It's Really the IRS: Constantly changing scams require your attention

danger IRS

Believe it or not, pretending to be an IRS agent is one of the favorite tactics of scam artists, according to the Better Business Bureau. The con artists impersonate the IRS to either intimidate people into making payments over the phone, or to send misleading emails tricking people into sharing personal information digitally.

You can defend yourself against these scammers by knowing these simple rules:

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Contractor or Employee?

Contractor or Employee?
Contractor or Employee?
Knowing the difference is important

Is a worker an independent contractor or an employee? This seemingly simple question is often the contentious subject of numerous IRS audits. As an employer, getting this wrong could cost you plenty in the way of Social Security, Medicare taxes, and other employment related taxes. Here is what you need to know.

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IRS PIN Announcement: DO NOT THROW OUT

IRS PIN Announcement: DO NOT THROW OUT

IRS PIN Announcement: DO NOT THROW OUT

If you are one of the unfortunate victims of IRS identity theft you will need a one-time PIN to file your tax return. Without this numeric identifier your 2015 tax return will be rejected. The IRS issues taxpayer victims this PIN in a written notice.

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IRS tax audits cut by budget issues

IRS tax audits cut by budget issues

IRS TAX AUDITS CUT BY BUDGET ISSUES

The IRS reports that its enforcement budget has been cut by $254 million, a 5% reduction from the previous year. As a result...

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Alert! IRS Recognizes the Telephone Scam

Alert! IRS Recognizes the Telephone Scam
Alert! Beware the Telephone Scam
Top IRS dirty dozen tax scam

Each year the IRS announces a dozen tax scams they call the “dirty dozen”. One of them - telephone scams - is on a huge upswing RIGHT NOW. Here is what you need to know.

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Warning: Watch out for aggressive phone scams again this tax season

Warning: Watch out for aggressive phone scams again this tax season

Warning: Watch out for aggressive phone scams again this tax season

The Treasury Inspector General for Taxpayer Administration (TIGTA) is warning taxpayers about one particular category of tax scams that has proven to be very widespread, very aggressive, and very relentless.

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IRS commissioner reveals major concerns

IRS commissioner reveals major concerns

IRS commissioner reveals major concerns

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen recently discussed the major concerns the IRS has as it readies itself for the upcoming tax filing season. The proliferation of tax scams is a big concern with millions of taxpayers already having been taken in by scammers impersonating IRS agents. According to Koskinen, these scammers make threatening phone calls, trying to intimidate victims into providing personal financial information that can be used to steal identities.
A second area of concern is the IRS's involvement in handling the premium tax credits under the Affordable Care Act. Some taxpayers who were given advances on the credits based on income estimates may find that they may be receiving smaller refunds or owing the IRS money after filing their 2014 tax returns.

Please give us a call to discuss this or any of our other topics with you, so we can address your specific requirements.

DiSabatino CPA
Michael DiSabatino
651 Via Alondra Suite 715
Camarillo, CA 93012
Phone: 805-389-7300
ww.sharpcpa.com

This publication provides summary information regarding the subject matter at time of publishing. Please call with any questions on how this information may impact your situation. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed without permission, except as noted here.  All rights reserved.

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Pay attention to the IRS rules for charitable deductions

Pay attention to the IRS rules for charitable deductions

Pay attention to the IRS rules for charitable deductions

As the year draws to a close, you may decide to donate cash or property to one or more worthy causes. Besides the satisfaction of helping others, there's another reward for your benevolence: a tax deduction on your 2014 return. But the IRS recommends that you keep the following points in mind:

1. You may only deduct contributions made to a legitimate tax-exempt charitable organization.

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Lifestyle Audits. A thing of the past?

Lifestyle Audits. A thing of the past?

Lifestyle Audits. A thing of the past?

The word “audit” is enough to raise anyone’s blood pressure. If the IRS agent then tells you they want to see bank accounts and personal records you may need a heart monitor. Should this happen to you, you could be in a process known as a lifestyle audit.

Background

The lifestyle audit was a tool used by auditor’s to ascertain if the income you claim on your tax return can support how you live.

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September 2014 DiSabatino CPA Newsletter

September 2014 DiSabatino CPA Newsletter

news-header

In this issue:

  • IRS Telephone Scams on The Rise
  • Make Lists: Save Money
  • When to Notify the Healthcare Marketplace
  • Avoid a Premium Tax Credit bill at the end of 2014
  • Is it Time to Step in?
  • Aging and help with financial matters

The Month of May:

  • September 1st: Labor Day
  • September 15st: 3rd Quarter Estimated Tax Due
  • October 1st: SIMPLE IRA plan establishment due

 School bells are ringing once again as summer draws to a close. This month's newsletter covers an array of topics from the recent warning of increased telephone scams by the IRS to helping identify when it is time to help parents with their financial management. Also included are circumstances when you need to make changes to your Healthcare Marketplace account and how to use the creation of lists to save money.

As always, should you know of someone who may benefit from this information please feel free to forward this newsletter to them.

IRS Telephone Scams on The Rise

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IRS Takes Steps to Reduce Fraud

IRS Takes Steps to Reduce Fraud

IRS Takes Steps to Reduce Fraud

In its ongoing effort to tackle the increase in fraud and identity theft at the IRS, there are a number of security enhancements announced to deal with the problem.

Limiting direct deposits into a single account

The problem: Would be thieves set up a deposit account at a local bank. They then file numerous tax returns claiming refunds early in the tax filing season. The tax returns request the refunds be sent to this single bank account. The account is then electronically drained of the stolen funds and the thieves are long gone.

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Tax News - Tid Bits

Tax News - Tid Bits

Room for improvement. A new report says the IRS needs to improve efficiency for telephone and correspondence services. According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), access to the IRS telephone help in 2013 remained at 68%, the same as it was in 2012. Also, unanswered paper correspondence that was more than 45 days old increased to 47% in 2013, up from 40% in 2012. (GAO-14-133, Dec. 2013)

 

IRS, phone home? The IRS is testing a program that allows staffers to access work email and other services on their personal smartphones. But the idea is not without risk. A new report from Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) points out that additional security is needed and recommends a thorough cost analysis to determine if the IRS should move forward with this concept. (TIGTA Ref. No. 2013- 20-108, 9124113)

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IRS Identity Theft Season Begins Now

IRS Identity Theft Season Begins Now

IRS Identity Theft Season Begins Now

Each year thieves try to steal billions in Federal Withholdings by stealing your identity. As the IRS focuses more attention on this quickly growing problem, now is the time of year to be extra vigilant.

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Simplified Option for Home Office Deduction

Simplified Option for Home Office Deduction

Do you want to simplify your tax return, yet still claim a deduction for your home office?  Beginning in tax year 2013 (returns that we will file in 2014), taxpayers may use a simplified option when figuring the deduction for business use of their home.  

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Government Shutdown Impacts Return Processing

Government Shutdown Impacts Return Processing

Government Shutdown Impacts Return Processing
...but only a little

“Our teams have been working hard throughout the fall to prepare for the upcoming tax season. The late January opening gives us enough time to get things right with our programming, testing and systems validation..."

-IRS Acting Commissioner Danny Werfel

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Beware of This New IRS Scam

Beware of This New IRS Scam

Lost in the recent news regarding stolen identities at Snapchat and the credit and debit card theft at major retailers, is the dramatic increase in identity theft and scams using the IRS. One of the more recent scams announced by the IRS is worth noting.

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