e-News for Tax Professionals Issue 2020-33

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e-News for Tax Professionals August 14, 2020

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Issue Number:  2020-33

Inside This Issue

  1. IRS takes new steps to ensure people with children receive $500 Economic Impact Payments
  2. IRS Nationwide Tax Forums: Final week highlights
  3. Pending check payments and payment notices
  4. Identity theft affidavit now available for businesses, other entities
  5. Working Virtually, Part 4: Avoid phishing scams
  6. Aug. 18 Webinar: IRS & Treasury Panel: Partnership Reporting
  7. IRS reminds truckers of Aug. 31 highway use tax return deadline; e-file encouraged
  8. Joint Board announces temporary waiver of “physical presence” education requirement for enrolled actuaries
  9. News from the Justice Department’s Tax Division
  10. Technical Guidance

1.  IRS takes new steps to ensure people with children receive $500 Economic Impact Payments

The Internal Revenue Service continues to look for ways to help people who were unable to provide their information in time to receive Economic Impact Payments for their children. As part of that effort, the Internal Revenue Service announced today it will reopen the registration period for federal beneficiaries who didn’t receive $500 per child payments earlier this year.

The IRS urges certain federal benefit recipients to use the IRS.gov Non-Filers tool starting Aug. 15 through Sept. 30 to enter information on their qualifying children to receive the supplemental $500 payments.

Those eligible to provide this information include people with qualifying children who receive Social Security retirement, survivor or disability benefits, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Railroad Retirement benefits and Veterans Affairs Compensation and Pension (C&P) benefits and did not file a tax return in 2018 or 2019.

The IRS anticipates the catch-up payments, equal to $500 per eligible child, will be issued by mid-October.

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2.  IRS Nationwide Tax Forums: Final week highlights

The 2020 IRS Nationwide Tax Forums conclude next week with six webinars.

On Tuesday, the National Association of Tax Professionals presents “Currency: Virtual, Digital, Cyber, Crypto?” while the IRS presents “Worker Classification Issues.” On Wednesday, the IRS and its partners present Spanish-language sessions on refundable credits and data security. And rounding out the week on Thursday, the IRS presents the annual plenary session, “Tax Changes from a Forms Perspective,” in both English and Spanish. 

For the full schedule, visit www.IRSTaxForum.com/schedule.

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3.  Pending check payments and payment notices

If your client mailed a check with or without a tax return, it may still be unopened in the backlog of mail the IRS is processing due to COVID-19. Any payments will be posted as the date IRS received them rather than the date the agency processed them. To avoid penalties and interest, taxpayers should not cancel their checks and should ensure funds continue to be available so the IRS can process them. To provide fair and equitable treatment, the IRS is providing relief from bad check penalties for dishonored checks the agency received between March 1 and July 15 due to delays in IRS processing. However, interest and penalties may still apply.

Due to high call volumes, the IRS suggests waiting to contact the agency about any unprocessed paper payments still pending. See www.irs.gov/payments for options to make payments other than by mail.

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4.  Identity theft affidavit now available for businesses, other entities

Form 14039-B, an identity theft affidavit for businesses and other entities, will make it easier for businesses, estates, trusts and tax-exempt organizations to report identity theft to the IRS. The form is now publicly available under the “Business” tab on the Identity Theft Central page on IRS.gov.

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5.  Working Virtually, Part 4: Avoid phishing scams

In part four of their summer series for tax professionals, the IRS and its Security Summit partners warn tax professionals to be alert to new phishing scams that try to take advantage of COVID-19, Economic Impact Payments and increased teleworking by practitioners.

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6.  Aug. 18 Webinar: IRS & Treasury Panel: Partnership Reporting

Leaders from the American Bar Association, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Tax Executives Institute and the IRS will present the webinar, “IRS & Treasury Panel: Partnership Reporting (Inbound),” at 1 p.m. ET on Aug. 18.

This 60-minute non-CLE webinar will consider:

• Base Erosion Anti-Abuse Tax
• Income effectively connected with a U.S. trade or business
• Fixed, determinable, annual, periodical income
• Gain or loss of foreign persons from sale or exchange of certain partnership interests
• Treatment of dividend equivalent payments

Treasury and IRS invite comments from stakeholders through Sept. 14, regarding proposed updates to the partnership form for tax year 2021.

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7.  IRS reminds truckers of Aug. 31 highway use tax return deadline; e-file encouraged

The Internal Revenue Service reminds owners of most heavy highway vehicles of their responsibility to timely file Form 2290, Heavy Highway Vehicle Use Tax Return by Aug. 31.

For more information about the highway use tax, visit the Trucking Tax Center at IRS.gov/trucker.

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8.  Joint Board announces temporary waiver of “physical presence” education requirement for enrolled actuaries

The Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries is waiving the physical presence requirement for continuing professional education (CPE) credit for any formal programs conducted from Jan. 1, 2020, through Dec. 31, 2022. The Joint Board made this decision due to the hardships that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused, particularly those involving traveling to and participating in gatherings requiring close contact with others.

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9.  News from the Justice Department’s Tax Division

The Justice Department this week announced the dismantling of three terrorist financing cyber-enabled campaigns, involving the al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’s military wing, al-Qaeda, and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS).

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10  .Technical Guidance

Notice 2020-60 provides procedures for the election of alternative minimum funding standards for defined benefit pension plans sponsored by community newspapers under section 430(m) of the Internal Revenue Code, which was added by section 115 of the SECURE Act. The draft notice also provides guidance and relief with respect to the election under section 430(m).

Announcement 2020-14 provides that user fees relating to certain requests for letter rulings and determination letters submitted to Employee Plans Rulings and Agreements will increase in four categories, effective Jan. 4, 2021.

Revenue Procedure 2020-39 addresses normalization issues that have arisen or are anticipated in ratemaking proceedings due to the corporate tax rate decrease that was included in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Pub. L. 115-97 (131 Stat 2054), enacted on December 22, 2017.

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