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October 1 represents a new fiscal year for the federal government and Congress is back in session after the August recess. Can we anticipate more tax legislation changes before the end of the year? The question still remains open but it is possible. Being that it will be hard to get tax issues passed in an election year, the pressure is on to get some of them into end-of-year tax legislation. 

There is a large list of pressing tax issues, both the House and Senate have shown interest in the following topics:

  • Temporarily extending over 30 expired or expiring tax preferences (extenders) expiring in 2019, some of which include:
    • Exclusion from gross income of discharge of qualified principal residence indebtedness
    • Mortgage insurance premiums treated as qualified residence interest
    • Deduction of qualified tuition and related expenses
    • Extension of empowerment zones tax incentives
    • Lower threshold of 7.5 percent of AGI for medical expenses
    • Energy-efficient homes credit
    • Energy-efficient commercial buildings deduction
    • Extension of excise tax credits relating to alternative fuels
  • Addressing the 100+ technical corrections identified by The Joint Committee on Taxation, most likely to include: 
    • Net operating loss carryback provisions, and
    • Inclusion of qualified improvement property in first-year bonus depreciation.

Further, the House has recently passed bills to include provisions to remove the "Cadillac tax" on high-cost employer-sponsored health coverage and clarifying tax treatment of legally married same-sex couples.

We all know that there are no guarantees when it comes to passing tax legislation but our hope is that some of the above items get addressed before 2020.