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This year's tax filing season will commence on January 20 as scheduled. The season will commence in spite of a last-minute law passed by Congress.

The Internal Revenue Service has announced that taxpayers can begin filing their tax returns for 2014 on January 20, 2015. There had been concerns that the filing season would have to be postponed this year, as lawmakers continued to delay a bill containing tax breaks. Earlier this month, lawmakers passed the bill, which extended dozens of tax breaks which had expired. The law now extends those tax breaks to the end of the year, which means taxpayers will now be able to claim those breaks when they file their tax returns for 2014.

In previous years, last-minute wrangling by lawmakers had delayed the start of the tax filing season. However, that will not happen this year. The agency has assured taxpayers that the agency has reviewed all the tax law changes the government made recently, and had come to the conclusion that there is nothing to prevent taxpayers from filing their returns, because the systems will be updated on time.

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Tagged in: Tax Filing Tax Laws

Companies that choose to leave the United States in order to take advantage of the more lenient tax laws overseas are facing flak. A new fledgling movement against such practices involves a threat that investors will sell off shares of companies engaging in such tactics.

Tax inversions or the strategy in which companies leave this country for overseas tax havens that are much more lenient, have been used as a money-saving tactic by companies to avoid taxes for several years. Recently, billionaire investor Mark Cuban made it clear that he, for one, was very unhappy with such practices. He tweeted that when companies engaged in such practices, it increased tax shortfall, and that the rest of the country was then required to make up for the tax shortfall, causing the government to increase taxes. He threatened that he would sell off shares in companies that choose to leave the United States for tax havens overseas. He clearly and emphatically recommended that shareholders hold companies accountable, by selling off shares in those companies that choose to move overseas.

Tax inversions are something the White House frown on as well. According to President Obama, companies that perform tax inversions should continue to maintain their presence in this country. They are American companies, and they do enjoy a number of benefits from being an American company. Therefore, it is only fair, that they stay in this country, and pay taxes.

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If you are currently receiving or paying alimony, the Internal Revenue Service has its sights on you. According to the Internal Revenue Service, it will soon begin devoting more time and focus to tax claims related to alimony.

Typically, tax laws require that spousal maintenance payments that are made by one spouse to the other be claimed as deductibles by the payer. The amount is also taxable for the recipient. Basically, the person who is paying the alimony can claim it as a deductible, while the person receiving the alimony must declare it as income on tax papers. However, the Internal Revenue Service does not believe that Americans are being totally honest about the alimony that they are receiving. It believes that there is a wide discrepancy between alimony deductibles and the alimony that is claimed as income.

Earlier this year, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration released a report in which it identified that there was a very large gap between deductions for alimony by people making the payments, and the income claimed on returns. The report focused on about 570,000 income tax returns in tax year 2010. It found that the deductions for alimony paid exceeded the income from alimony by more than $2.3 million. Overall, the report found that 47% of the tax returns that were analyzed had some discrepancy between the payments.

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National Taxpayer Advocate Nina E Olson has released her annual report to Congress for 2013. In the report, Olson calls for the Internal Revenue Service to establish and implement a Taxpayer Bill of Rights.

According to the Report, a Bill of Rights like this would help establish In General Revenue Service goals, and performance measures, and help provide guidance for federal employees when they deal with taxpayers. More importantly, the Bill of Rights would provide information to American taxpayers that will help them while dealing with an Internal Revenue Service employee. Currently, most taxpayer rights are contained in the Internal Revenue Code, but these are not compiled in a comprehensive and coherent manner, and therefore, California tax lawyers find that most American taxpayers remain unaware of their rights.

This is not the first time that Olson has recommended such guidelines. Earlier too, she had called for the adoption of a Taxpayer Bill Of Rights, because when taxpayers are treated better, rather than being treated in an arbitrary manner, they learn to trust the system, and also become more likely to comply with tax laws.

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