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On Aug. 23, 2018, the Internal Revenue Service issued proposed regulations governing the availability of charitable contribution deductions when a taxpayer expects to receive a corresponding state or local tax credit.

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The Internal Revenue Service is encouraging taxpayers to use its Withholding Calculator to perform a "paycheck checkup". While they recommend reviewing your withholding amounts annually, changes from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 have made this a vital step for taxpayers. Taxpayers that do not verify that they are withholding the appropriate amount of tax from their paychecks risk an unexpected tax bill or penalty during tax time.

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While the term "unicorn" has been reserved for the once rare existence of a large, private company with a valuation in excess of $1 billion, such companies have become much more common in recent years. Today, over 150 unicorns are headquartered in the US, which represents significant growth as compared to less than 25 in 2011.

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FASB issued ASU 2018-11, which contains targeted improvements to Topic 842 Leases. Among the targeted improvements are a transitional method for reporting during the adoption period and clarification on separating components of a contract for lessors as they relate to FASB's new revenue guidance Topic 606 Revenue from Contracts with Customers. Topic 842 significantly alters current lease accounting under US GAAP. The new standard removes the current approach of classifying leases as either capital or operating leases.

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UHY Advisors Michigan CEO, Tom Callan and Gordon Follmer, founder were featured in dBusiness "Detroit 500".

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On Aug. 8 the Internal Revenue Service issued proposed regulations containing some clarification on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) passed last December. One of the areas of anticipated clarification was whether W-2 wages paid from third party payers, such as professional employer organizations (PEOs) or agents under section 3504, were included in the wages of the third party payer or the taxpayer for purposes of calculating the qualified business deduction for pass-through entities.

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On August 23, 2018, the Internal Revenue Service issued Proposed Regulations governing the availability of charitable contribution deductions when a taxpayer expects to receive a corresponding state or local tax credit.

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Pursuant to the South Dakota v. Wayfair ruling, the Michigan Department of Treasury has announced that beginning Oct. 1, 2018, remote sellers, regardless of in-state presence, who meet certain requirements, must pay sales tax on transactions of taxable sales in the state. The Supreme Court decision in June has led to several states enacting new legislation pertaining to the collection of sales tax based on "economic presence".

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Every year, hundreds of thousands of people lose money to telephone scams. One of the most infamous scams is the IRS scam - and it is still on the rise. On July 19, the IRS issued its Tax Tip 2018-111, "Here's How the IRS Contacts Taxpayers", to help people avoid becoming a victim of scammers who pretend to be from the IRS with a goal of stealing personal information and ultimately his/her money.

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On March 13, 2018 the IRS announced five new compliance campaigns (3/13/18 IRS Announcement - SECA Tax), one of which relates to the reporting of self-employment income by limited partners in partnerships and LLCs. In the past there has been much uncertainty and inconsistency about the reporting of self-employment income by LLC members. Sec. 1402(a)(13) states that, other than guaranteed payments, the distributive share of all other income to a "limited partner" is excluded from self-employment tax. This has led to many LLC members, whether active in the business or not, to exclude their earnings from self-employment taxes.

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The Bonus Bind: Are Bonuses Appropriate in Today’s Economy?
Sunday, November 8, 2009 by SuperUser Account
As our nation prepares for a slow economic revival in 2010, companies are realizing that their employees — especially those who have stuck through the ups and downs of 2009 — are more valuable than ever. Validating key performers’ efforts and recognizing work well done will move up a rung on the ladder of importance for talent retention. According to “American Job Thankfulness,” a survey conducted just before Thanksgiving, while most Americans are thankful for their jobs, a good number are willing to leave. Why? For 46% of those surveyed, it’s because they do not feel they are being recognized for their performance and the value they add.
 
These circumstances present an interesting quandary for companies and begs the question, how should companies recognize top performers? Giving bonuses comes to mind as a natural way to keep a company’s best talent happy. But in the face of continued pressure to conserve assets and operate in a tight fiscal environment, what part should bonuses play in the recognition mix?
You may recall the debates that ensued last January after Wall Street bankers accepted close to $20 billion in bonuses at the same time that the financial industry accepted a $700 billion bailout fund to prop up the financial system. President Obama called the bankers’ acceptance of those bonuses "shameful.”
 
The underlying predicament with bonuses — which companies will continue to face, perhaps to an even greater degree in 2010 — is the belief that there is a time for bonuses, and tough times are not the time. Others feel that times might get tougher if you lose top performers. In fact, many employees claim feeling burnt-out in their jobs because of extra work they’ve taken on as a result of company layoffs and being willing to shop around as soon as the job market stabilizes. The notion that employees are just thankful to have jobs is not entirely true.
 
Taking into account the price companies pay when losing key employees and finding replacements, the loss of intellectual capital and the interruption to production — developing a retention strategy as part of your upturn preparation is key. In fact, according to an article in the WorldatWork magazine, workspan, "The Balance Beam: Keeping Key People in Tough Times," it’s not only important to keep the best people, but the right people as well. “In times of economic distress, it becomes even more critical for organizations to optimize their workforces, use the right engagement and development strategies with employees and make the best human capital investments and decisions.”
 
Considering all of this, it seems that if the performance is there and the company is able to safely pay, it’s important to reward individuals for a job well done and take one more step toward retaining those valuable employees. This time of year also seems most appropriate to reexamine bonus recognition programs and ensure that companies are executing an effective approach. While most companies tie salary increases to some mix of individual and business performance, few companies develop recognition programs that differentiate high performers from other workers. As bonus pools dwindle, making this distinction will be imperative to the financial health of most companies.
 
To further define companies’ positions on whether bonuses are appropriate in today’s economy and if so, the basis for which bonuses are being distributed, UHY Advisors conducted a pulse survey on the topic during their Fourth Quarter 2009 Financial Leaders Summit. According to the results, 18.2% of respondents will not be granting bonuses; however a full 81.8% are giving bonus recognition. How are these responding companies going about granting their bonuses? The large majority, 48.5%, of the respondents are basing bonuses on a combination of personal and company performance; the remaining bonus rationale was based on company performance (24.2%), personal performance (9.1%), and end of year/holiday recognition (6.1%).
 
In the end, it all comes down to striking a balance between motivating your team and demonstrating to them their value, and being fiscally responsible. Below are a few bonus strategies for business leaders to consider:
1. If top workers are accustomed to receiving bonuses based on performance, and your company is financially able, then give bonuses. Why? Because by doing so you confirm their value to the organization and give recognition to the impact of their work on the company’s future direction. Plus, if you don’t give bonuses when expected, the message is sent that the company is not doing well, and employees may begin to fear for their jobs and potentially look elsewhere. Again, retention is paramount now ― so it’s important to give bonus pay if able. If your company is in a position to give bonuses but needs to reduce the amount, explain that to employees. People understand the pressures companies face today to conserve cash and operate in a lean manner. 
 
2. If bonus pay is a stretch, give other perks in lieu of cash — paid time off, alternative work schedules, gift certificates to local establishments. Any form of recognition is better than none at all. Make sure your top performers’ efforts are recognized, conversations are open about the status of the company and expectations for future bonuses are discussed.
 
3. Over-communicate. Whatever you decide, make sure you communicate it openly and honestly with your staff. Keeping employees, especially top performers, in the dark might send them searching for a more stable environment.
All things considered, bonus strategies boil down to securing your brain trust and expressing the value your top talent brings to the company. There is no cookie-cutter answer to this critical question—the decision will be different for each company. One decision that is the same for companies across the board, however, is that the last thing they need right now is to lose top performers who are critical to sustaining market share and driving future success.