Staying on top of the latest tax updates and developments is important. So far this summer, the IRS has made a few announcements that may affect you. Here’s a brief collection of 2016’s summer tax updates:
- Information on avoiding possible charity scams. The tragedy in Orlando caused the IRS to make a statement encouraging people to research charities they donate to. Scammers often take advantage of crisis like the Orlando shooting to set up fake donation accounts that look and feel legitimate but are not. If in doubt, the IRS suggests using their search tool to make sure a charity is legitimate before giving any information or money.
- Form 990 is now available online. This is the form used by tax-exempt organizations to file a return, and the information is publically available. Up until now electronically filed forms could only be accessed through image files, but now can be viewed on the web. Paper-filed form 990’s will continue to be available as image files.
- New (and safer!) online authentication. The IRS has worked with top national security experts to up their e-authentication efforts. The online access to tax returns, Get Transcript Online, has been inaccessible since last spring but was taken down over concerns of identity thieves hacking into accounts. The improved safety measures have greatly reduced the risk of cyberthreats and will lay a foundation for even more online accessibility for taxpayers.
- Interest rates will remain the same for the 3rd Earlier this month the IRS announced interest rates for over- and underpayments will remain the same for the quarter starting July 1.
- Be wary of a “Federal Student Tax” scam. Targeting students, scammers have been making phone calls demanding payment for taxes owed on gift cards, requesting W2 information, or verifying tax information over the phone. The IRS reminds taxpayers they will never call and demand immediate payment over the phone, will never threaten to have you arrested for not paying, ask for debit/credit card information over the phone, demand payment without giving you the chance to make an appeal, or specify a payment method.
- More details about the Certified Professional Employer Program were released. This voluntary program will open July 1 and applicants must complete the application process by September 1 in order to become certified by January 1, 2017. You can learn more about this program HERE.
You can always read the IRS’ Latest News on their website HERE. For more information or clarification on any of these updates, don’t hesitate to contact us! We’re always happy to answer your questions and help make understanding your taxes easier.