IRS Tax News

  • 13 Sep 2021 3:46 PM | Anonymous

    Revenue Procedure 2021-41 provides the domestic asset/liability percentages and domestic investment yields needed by foreign life insurance companies and foreign property and liability insurance companies to compute their minimum effectively connected net investment income under section 842(b) of the Internal Revenue Code for taxable years beginning after December 31, 2019.


    Revenue Procedure 2021-41 will appear in IRB 2021-39, dated Sept. 27, 2021.


  • 13 Sep 2021 12:05 PM | Anonymous

    WASHINGTON — During National Small Business Week, the Internal Revenue Service wants small business owners to know that information and resources to help them understand and meet their tax obligations are available free at IRS.gov.

    Small businesses play a pivotal role in our nation’s economy. The IRS has a variety of resources available to help employers meet their tax responsibilities as well as help their employees.

    IRS online resources can also help employers with things like how to determine if workers should be classified as employees or independent contractors, when employment taxes are due and what forms they need to file.

    Employer Identification Number

    An Employer Identification Number , also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number is a must-have for a business. Applying for an EIN can be done online for free using an interview style application offered by the IRS. Five Things to Know about the EIN is a video that helps explain why it is critical the IRS has accurate and current information related to EINs or business accounts. 

    Employment taxes
    It's important a small business understand employment taxes such as federal income tax, Social Security and Medicare taxes as well as Federal Unemployment (FUTA) Tax. Employers must regularly report wages, tips and other compensation paid to an employee by filing the required form(s) to the IRS.

    Most employers use Form 941, Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return to report federal income tax withheld and both the employer and employee Social Security and Medicare taxes. The smallest employers (those whose annual liability for Social Security, Medicare and withheld federal income taxes is $1,000 or less) file Form 944, Employer’s Annual Federal Tax Return, and agricultural employers file Form 943, Employer's Annual Federal Tax Return for Agricultural Employees. Only the employer pays FUTA tax; it is not withheld from the employee's wages. Employers report their FUTA taxes by filing Form 940, Employer’s Annual Federal Unemployment (FUTA) Tax Return.

    If businesses compensate non-employees for services, or pay rent, commissions, the fees of attorneys and other professionals, or make certain other payments, businesses must obtain the Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) of the payee before making the payment. If businesses don’t have the payee’s TIN at the time payment is made, businesses must withhold 24% from the payment as backup withholding. A payer is liable for backup withholding even if the tax is not deducted from the payment. Payers may use Form W-9 to request the payee’s TIN. Payers use Form 945, Annual Return of Withheld Income Tax, to report backup withholding.

    There are two deposit schedules for employment taxes withheld and the employer’s match − monthly and semi-weekly. Before the beginning of each calendar year, employers must determine which of the two deposit schedules they’re required to use. To determine the businesses’ payment schedule, review Publication 15 for Forms 941, 944 and 945, or Publication 51 for Form 943. Deposits for FUTA Tax (Form 940) are required for the quarter within which the tax due exceeds $500. The tax must be deposited by the end of the month following the end of the quarter.  Small business taxpayers must use electronic funds transfer (EFTPS) to make all federal tax deposits. See the Employment Tax Due Dates page for information on when deposits are due.

    Estimated tax payments
    Taxes are pay-as-you-go. This means taxpayers need to pay most of their tax during the year, as they receive income, rather than paying at the end of the year.

    Small business owners, sole proprietors, partners and S corporation shareholders who don’t have tax withheld from their earnings need to make estimated tax payments, usually quarterly. Anyone who pays too little tax (.pdf) or does not pay on-time, may owe a penalty.

    Hiring others to prepare payroll
    To meet payroll and employment tax responsibilities, many businesses hire a payroll and payroll tax company. Most of these businesses provide quality service, however, sometimes a payroll service provider doesn't submit their client's payroll taxes and closes abruptly. The client remains legally responsible for paying the taxes due even if they sent funds for deposits or payments to the payroll service provider. The IRS urges employers to choose carefully when selecting a payroll provider. The IRS also encourages employers to enroll in the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS). It's free and when deposits are made under their EIN, it lets them monitor that their payroll service provider is making their tax deposits.

    Small businesses can share the word with employees about Child Tax Credit
    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, new legislation was enacted to aid not only struggling business owners, but also individuals. Employers have direct access to people who may be eligible for advance Child Tax Credit payments. As part of its ongoing effort to help eligible people access advance Child Tax Credit payments and the increased Child Tax Credit for the 2021 tax year; IRS will be encouraging employers to help spread the word during National Small Business Week 2021.

    Materials for employers and others who can help are available on the IRS website at 2021 Child Tax Credit and Advance Child Tax Credit Payments: Resources and Guidance. This is part of a larger effort underway at the IRS to reach people eligible for the payments and other credits. Individuals can check their eligibility for the advance payments by using the Advance Child Tax Credit Eligibility Assistant.

    More information
    Online IRS resources available to small businesses to learn their employer tax responsibilities include:


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:16 AM | Anonymous

    WASHINGTON – The Internal Revenue Service reminds taxpayers today that the cost of home testing for COVID-19 is an eligible medical expense that can be paid or reimbursed under health flexible spending arrangements (health FSAs), health savings accounts (HSAs), health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), or Archer medical savings accounts (Archer MSAs). That is because the cost to diagnose COVID-19 is an eligible medical expense for tax purposes.

    The IRS also reminds taxpayers that the costs of personal protective equipment, such as masks, hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes, for the primary purpose of preventing the spread of COVID-19 are eligible medical expenses that can be paid or reimbursed under health FSAs, HSAs, HRAs, or Archer MSAs. Additional information is available on IRS.gov.

    For more information regarding details and requirements on deductibility of medical expenses, taxpayers can review Can I Deduct My Medical and Dental Expenses? and Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses.


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:15 AM | Anonymous

    WASHINGTON — Victims of Hurricane Ida in parts of Mississippi now have until Nov. 1, 2021, to file various individual and business tax returns and make tax payments, the Internal Revenue Service announced today.

    The IRS is offering relief to any area designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as qualifying for individual or public assistance. Currently, individuals and households affected by Hurricane Ida that reside or have a business in all 82 counties and the Mississippi Choctaw Indian Reservation qualify for tax relief. The current list of eligible localities is always available on the disaster relief page on IRS.gov.

    “The IRS stands ready to help people and businesses affected by Hurricane Ida, now and in the weeks ahead,” said IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig.

    The tax relief postpones various tax filing and payment deadlines that occurred starting on Aug. 28, 2021. As a result, affected individuals and businesses will have until Nov. 1, 2021, to file returns and pay any taxes that were originally due during this period. This means individuals who had a valid extension to file their 2020 return due to run out on Oct. 15, 2021, will now have until Nov. 1, 2021, to file. The IRS noted, however, that because tax payments related to these 2020 returns were due on May 17, 2021, those payments are not eligible for this relief.

    The Nov. 1, 2021 deadline also applies to quarterly estimated income tax payments due on Sept. 15, 2021, and the quarterly payroll and excise tax returns normally due on Nov. 1, 2021. Businesses with an original or extended due date also have the additional time including, among others, calendar-year partnerships and S corporations whose 2020 extensions run out on Sept. 15, 2021 and calendar-year corporations whose 2020 extensions run out on Oct. 15, 2021.    

    In addition, penalties on payroll and excise tax deposits due on or after Aug. 28, 2021 and before Sept. 13, will be abated as long as the deposits are made by Sept. 13, 2021.

    The IRS disaster relief page has details on other returns, payments and tax-related actions qualifying for the additional time.

    The IRS automatically provides filing and penalty relief to any taxpayer with an IRS address of record located in the disaster area. Therefore, taxpayers do not need to contact the agency to get this relief. However, if an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late payment penalty notice from the IRS that has an original or extended filing, payment or deposit due date falling within the postponement period, the taxpayer should call the number on the notice to have the penalty abated.

    In addition, the IRS will work with any taxpayer who lives outside the disaster area but whose records necessary to meet a deadline occurring during the postponement period are located in the affected area. Taxpayers qualifying for relief who live outside the disaster area need to contact the IRS at 866-562-5227. This also includes workers assisting the relief activities who are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization.

    Individuals and businesses in a federally declared disaster area who suffered uninsured or unreimbursed disaster-related losses can choose to claim them on either the return for the year the loss occurred (in this instance, the 2021 return normally filed next year), or the return for the prior year (2020). Be sure to write the FEMA declaration number – EM-3569 − on any return claiming a loss. See Publication 547 for details.

    The tax relief is part of a coordinated federal response to the damage caused by Hurricane Ida and is based on local damage assessments by FEMA. For information on disaster recovery, visit disasterassistance.gov.


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:15 AM | Anonymous

    WASHINGTON — In support of National Small Business Week, the Internal Revenue Service will issue numerous online materials that focus on getting small business owners the information they need to comply with filing and paying requirements.

    The IRS also reminds employers of the tax benefits available to them.

    Here are some of the covered topics:

    • Employer Responsibilities
    • Employee vs. Independent Contractor
    • Work Opportunity Tax Credit
    • Employment Tax Compliance
    • Expanded Tax Benefits

    During Small Business Week, the IRS also encourages employers to help get the word out about the advanced payments of the Child Tax Credit. Employers have direct access to their employees, who may receive this credit. More information on the Advanced Child Tax Credit is available on IRS.gov. The website has tools employers can use to help spread the word.

    Below are some helpful resources for small businesses and the self-employed:


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:14 AM | Anonymous

    Today, the IRS published the latest executive column “A Closer Look,” which features Darren Guillot, SB/SE Commissioner, Collection, and De Lon Harris, SB/SE Commissioner, Examination, discussing how the IRS is committed to assisting small businesses and self-employed individuals meet their tax obligations. “We will continue to work diligently to provide guidance and information on relief and tools for the small business community and ensure fairness in the tax system for all,” said Guillot. Read more here. Read the Spanish version here.

    A Closer Look” is a column from IRS executives that covers a variety of timely issues of interest to taxpayers and the tax community. It also provides a detailed look at key issues affecting everything from IRS operations and employees to issues involving taxpayers and tax professionals.

    Check here for prior posts and new updates.


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:14 AM | Anonymous

    WASHINGTON — Victims of Hurricane Ida in parts of New York and New Jersey now have until Jan. 3, 2022, to file various individual and business tax returns and make tax payments, the Internal Revenue Service announced today. This is comparable to relief provided last week to Ida victims in Louisiana.

    The IRS is offering relief to any area designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as qualifying for individual or public assistance. In New York, this currently includes Bronx, Kings, New York, Queens, Richmond and Westchester counties, and in New Jersey, it includes Bergen, Gloucester, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Passaic and Somerset counties. Taxpayers in Ida-impacted localities subsequently designated by FEMA in other parts of these states will automatically receive the same filing and payment relief. The current list of eligible localities is always available on the disaster relief page on IRS.gov.

    “During this difficult time, the IRS stands ready to help victims of Hurricane Ida,” said IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig. “We want people affected by this devastating hurricane focused on their safety and recovery for themselves and their families. To provide assistance now and in the weeks ahead, we have a variety of different types of relief available to help people and businesses affected by this disaster.”

    The tax relief postpones various tax filing and payment deadlines that occurred starting on Sept. 1, 2021. As a result, affected individuals and businesses will have until Jan. 3, 2022, to file returns and pay any taxes that were originally due during this period. This means individuals who had a valid extension to file their 2020 return due to run out on Oct. 15, 2021, will now have until Jan. 3, 2022, to file. The IRS noted, however, that because tax payments related to these 2020 returns were due on May 17, 2021, those payments are not eligible for this relief.

    The Jan. 3, 2022 deadline also applies to quarterly estimated income tax payments due on Sept. 15, 2021, and the quarterly payroll and excise tax returns normally due on Nov. 1, 2021. It also applies to tax-exempt organizations, operating on a calendar-year basis, that had a valid extension due to run out on Nov. 15, 2021. Businesses with an original or extended due date also have the additional time including, among others, calendar-year partnerships and S corporations whose 2020 extensions run out on Sept. 15, 2021 and calendar-year corporations whose 2020 extensions run out on Oct. 15, 2021.

    In addition, penalties on payroll and excise tax deposits due on or after Sept. 1 and before Sept. 16, will be abated as long as the deposits are made by Sept. 16, 2021.

    The IRS disaster relief page has details on other returns, payments and tax-related actions qualifying for the additional time.

    The IRS automatically provides filing and penalty relief to any taxpayer with an IRS address of record located in the disaster area. Therefore, taxpayers do not need to contact the agency to get this relief. However, if an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late payment penalty notice from the IRS that has an original or extended filing, payment or deposit due date falling within the postponement period, the taxpayer should call the number on the notice to have the penalty abated.

    In addition, the IRS will work with any taxpayer who lives outside the disaster area but whose records necessary to meet a deadline occurring during the postponement period are located in the affected area. Taxpayers qualifying for relief who live outside the disaster area need to contact the IRS at 866-562-5227. This also includes workers assisting the relief activities who are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization.

    Individuals and businesses in a federally declared disaster area who suffered uninsured or unreimbursed disaster-related losses can choose to claim them on either the return for the year the loss occurred (in this instance, the 2021 return normally filed next year), or the return for the prior year (2020). Be sure to write the FEMA declaration number – 4614 for New Jersey or 4615 for New York or − on any return claiming a loss. See Publication 547 for details.

    The tax relief is part of a coordinated federal response to the damage caused by Hurricane Ida and is based on local damage assessments by FEMA. For information on disaster recovery, visit disasterassistance.gov.


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:14 AM | Anonymous

    Notice 2021-53 provides guidance to employers on the requirement to report qualified sick leave wages and qualified family leave wages paid to employees under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, as amended by the COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020 and under sections 3131, 3132, and 3133 of the Internal Revenue Code for leave provided in 2021.

    Notice 2021-53 will be in IRB:  2021-39, dated September 27, 2021.


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:13 AM | Anonymous

    WASHINGTON – The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service today issued Notice 2021-53, which provides guidance to employers about reporting on Form W-2 the amount of qualified sick and family leave wages paid to employees for leave taken in 2021. The notice provides guidance under recent legislation, including:  the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), as amended by the COVID-Related Tax Relief Act of 2020, and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

    Employers will be required to report these amounts to employees either on Form W-2, Box 14, or in a separate statement provided with the Form W-2. The guidance provides employers with model language to use as part of the Instructions for Employee for the Form W-2 or on the separate statement provided with the Form W-2.

    The wage amount that the notice requires employers to report on Form W-2 will provide employees who are also self-employed with the information necessary to determine the amount of any sick and family leave equivalent credits they may claim in their self-employed capacities.

    In July 2020, the IRS issued Notice 2020-54, which provided guidance regarding W-2 reporting of qualified sick leave and family leave under FFCRA for wages paid to employees for leave taken in 2020.

    Additional information about tax relief for employers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic can be found on IRS.gov.


  • 13 Sep 2021 8:12 AM | Anonymous

    IRS YouTube Video:
    Estimated Tax Payments - English

    WASHINGTON – The Internal Revenue Service reminds people that Sept. 15, 2021, is the deadline for third quarter estimated tax payments. This generally applies to people who are self-employed and some investors, retirees and those who may not normally have taxes withheld from their paycheck by their employers.

    The U.S. tax system operates on a pay-as-you-go basis. This means taxpayers are to pay most of their tax during the year, as they earn or receive income. Therefore, individuals not subject to withholding may need to make quarterly estimated tax payments.

    Who should pay quarterly?

    In most cases, taxpayers should make quarterly estimated tax payments for 2021 if both of the following apply:

    • Individuals expect to owe at least $1,000 in tax for 2021 after subtracting their withholding and tax credits.
    • They expect their withholding and tax credits to be less than the smaller of:
      • 90% of the tax to be shown on their 2021 tax return or
      • 100% of the tax shown on their 2020 tax return. Their 2020 tax return must cover all 12 months.

    Taxpayers with income not subject to withholding, including interest, dividends, capital gains, alimony, cryptocurrency and rental income, normally make estimated tax payments.

    Special rules apply to some groups of taxpayers, such as farmers, fishermen, casualty and disaster victims, those who recently became disabled, recent retirees and those who receive income unevenly during the year. Publication 505, Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax, provides more information on estimated tax rules. The worksheet in Form 1040-ES, Estimated Tax for Individuals, or Form 1120-W, Estimated Tax for Corporations, has details on who must pay estimated tax.

    Penalty for underpayment

    If a taxpayer underpaid their taxes, they may have to pay a penalty. This applies whether they paid through withholding or through estimated tax payments. A penalty may also apply for late estimated tax payments even if someone is due a refund when they file their tax return.

    To see if they owe a penalty, taxpayers should use Form 2210. The IRS may waive the penalty if someone underpaid because of unusual circumstances and not willful neglect. Examples include:

    • casualty, disaster or another unusual situation,
    • an individual retired after reaching age 62 during a tax year when estimated tax payments applied and
    • an individual became disabled during a tax year when estimated tax payments applied.

    How to figure estimated tax

    To figure estimated tax, an individual must figure their expected adjusted gross income (AGI), taxable income, taxes, deductions and credits for the year. When figuring 2021 estimated tax, it may be helpful to use income, deductions and credits for 2020 as a starting point. Use the 2020 federal tax return as a guide. Taxpayers can use Form 1040-ES to figure their estimated tax. Nonresident aliens use Form 1040-ES (NR) to figure estimated tax.

    Taxpayers must make adjustments both for changes in their own situation and for recent changes in the tax law. For instance, tax provisions in the American Rescue Plan of 2021 may impact an individual taxpayer’s situation. For more information, see Publication 505 under What’s New for 2021 (.pdf).

    For information about these and other changes in the law, visit IRS.gov. The instructions for Form 1040-ES include a worksheet to help taxpayers figure their estimated tax. Keep the worksheet for records.

    The Tax Withholding Estimator on IRS.gov offers taxpayers a clear, step-by-step method to have the right amount of tax withheld from wages and pensions. It also has instructions to file a new Form W-4 to give to their employer to adjust the amount withheld each payday.

    Other IRS.gov resources

    The fourth and final 2021 estimated tax payment is due Jan. 17, 2022.


©2019, Virginia Society of Tax & Accounting Professionals, formerly The Accountants Society of Virginia, 
is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization.

PO Box 3363 | Warrenton, VA 20188 | Phone: (800) 927-2731 | Fax: (888) 403-0920 | asv@virginia-accountants.org

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software