John D. Teter Law Offices



1361 South Winchester Boulevard, Suite 113
San Jose, CA 95128

Recent Blog Posts

How Does Worker Classification Affect Federal Employment Taxes?

 Posted on May 18, 2022 in Taxation Law

san jose tax lawyerBusinesses will need to address multiple types of tax issues, including paying all required employment taxes. One of the key issues that can affect these taxes involves how workers are classified. Different requirements apply for employees and independent contractors, and by ensuring that workers are properly classified, an employer can avoid potential penalties or other problems 

Understanding Federal Tax Requirements for Employees and Independent Contractors

Employees who work directly for an employer have certain rights, including the right to receive a minimum wage and overtime pay. They can also receive certain benefits, including workers’ compensation for work-related injuries or illnesses, unemployment insurance, and other benefits provided by an employer, such as sick pay, vacation or personal days, and the ability to participate in a health insurance plan or an employer-sponsored retirement savings account.

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When Is Backup Withholding Required for Payers Who File 1099 Forms?

 Posted on May 17, 2022 in Taxation Law

san jose tax lawyerBusiness owners will need to address multiple types of tax issues, including withholding payroll taxes from employees’ incomes and paying these taxes to the IRS and the California Employment Development Department (EDD). These issues can become more complicated when a business hires independent contractors or when other types of payments are made. In general, payments that are reported on 1099 forms do not require a payer to withhold taxes. However, there are certain situations where the IRS may require backup withholding.

What Is Backup Withholding?

Form 1099 is an information return that lets the IRS know about certain types of payments made by a business. The recipients of these payments are expected to report and pay taxes on these payments. However if there are issues related to the reporting of payments, a payer may be required to withhold a certain percentage of these payments and pay these taxes to the IRS. The tax rate for backup withholding is 24 percent.

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How Does a Business’s Structure Affect Taxation?

 Posted on May 05, 2022 in Small Business Taxes

san jose tax lawyerDuring the business formation process, a business’s owner, partners, investors, or shareholders will need to determine how the business will be structured. The selection of a business entity may determine how a company will be organized and managed, and it will also affect the taxes that the business will need to pay. By understanding how taxes apply to different types of business structures, owners or partners can determine which type of business entity will provide them with the most benefits.

Taxation for Different Types of Business Entities

The structure of a business will determine whether income taxes will apply to the business itself or to its owners, partners, and shareholders. If a business is a pass-through entity, profits and losses will be passed through to those who have an ownership share in the business, and individual income taxes will apply to these amounts. 

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IRS Proposed Rule May Affect Retirement Account Beneficiaries

 Posted on May 03, 2022 in Taxation Law

San Jose IRA Tax LawyerThere are multiple different types of retirement accounts that a person may use to ensure that they will have the necessary financial resources later in life. These accounts can provide a number of tax benefits in addition to allowing money saved throughout a person’s career to grow significantly through well-managed investments. However, the treatment of these accounts by the IRS can sometimes become complicated, including in cases where a person dies either before or after they begin receiving distributions. Recently, the IRS issued a Proposed Rule that details the requirements that apply in these situations.

Changes to RMD Rules Under the SECURE Act

The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act, which was implemented in December 2019, made a few updates to the rules related to required minimum distributions (RMDs) for certain types of retirement accounts, including 403(b) plans and individual retirement accounts (IRAs). One major change was an update to the required beginning date (RBD) at which a person must begin receiving distributions. For people born after July 1, 1949, the RBD has been increased from age 70 ½ to 72.

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How Do Taxes Apply to Money Raised Through Crowdfunding?

 Posted on April 20, 2022 in Taxation Law

San Jose Tax Reporting LawyerThe internet has allowed many people to pursue opportunities that had not previously been available, including when raising money for business purposes or to support charitable causes. “Crowdfunding” has become a popular way to raise funds, and multiple platforms are available for people and businesses that are looking to connect with individual people and receive donations or sell products or services. For example, Kickstarter is a platform that many people and businesses use to raise funds to publish books, record and release musical albums, create video games, or pursue other opportunities. Platforms such as GoFundMe have also helped people raise money for charitable purposes through donations, such as to pay for medical bills. As these platforms become more popular, these who receive money through these methods will need to understand their tax reporting requirements and the situations where they may need to pay income taxes on the money raised.

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Biden Administration Proposes New Rules for Taxing Cryptocurrency

 Posted on April 18, 2022 in Taxation Law

San Jose Tax Compliance LawyereIn recent years, virtual currencies have become a popular investment. Many people have been able to realize significant gains through buying, selling, and trading cryptocurrencies, and they have also used these currencies to complete multiple types of digital transactions. As the use of virtual currencies has continued to rise, the federal government has taken steps to ensure that assets and transactions are reported properly so that they can be taxed by the IRS. The way these currencies are treated may change in the future based on proposals from the administration of President Joe Biden.

Changes to Cryptocurrency Taxes Could Raise Billions in Tax Revenue

A budget proposal released by the Biden administration in March 2022 included several possible changes to how virtual currencies may be treated. These include:

  • Cryptocurrency taxes may shift to using mark-to-market rules. Currently, virtual currencies are treated as property, and capital gains taxes are applied when cryptocurrencies are sold or traded. Under a mark-to-market system, increases in value of cryptocurrencies would be treated as income, and in some cases, owners would be required to pay income taxes to the IRS. However, virtual currencies would not be considered to be securities or commodities, and mark-to-market rules would only apply for currencies classified in a new third category of assets. The Treasury Department will determine which types of currencies are included in this category depending on whether they are actively traded, whether they are regularly bought and sold using currency issued by the United States or other countries, and whether reliable price quotes are available.

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Can Taxpayers With Foreign Assets Be Exempted From Filing Form 8938?

 Posted on April 05, 2022 in Taxation Law

san jose tax lawyerU.S. taxpayers who own assets in other countries must meet a number of requirements when filing tax returns with the IRS. Reporting of foreign assets can be complex, and in some cases, taxpayers may wish to avoid providing the IRS with more information than is necessary. Form 8938 (Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets) will provide information about multiple types of foreign accounts, and taxpayers may be required to submit this form along with their annual tax return. However, there are some exceptions to this requirement, and depending on the tax strategies a person uses and the extent of their assets, they may be able to avoid submitting Form 8938 in certain situations.

Exceptions to Form 8938 Requirements

Taxpayers who are considered “specified individuals” or “specified domestic entities” are required to submit Form 8938 if they own foreign assets with a value above a certain threshold. However, a person who is not required to file a tax return for a certain year will not need to submit Form 8938.

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How Changes to Form 14457 May Affect IRS Voluntary Disclosure Practice

 Posted on March 24, 2022 in Taxation Law

san jose tax lawyerThere are a variety of situations where taxpayers may be accused of violating U.S. tax laws. These violations may be uncovered during a tax audit, or a taxpayer may have failed to properly report foreign assets and income. In cases where a person may face criminal charges or civil penalties for non-compliance with tax laws, they may be able to come into compliance by voluntarily disclosing information to the IRS. Taxpayers who are considering a voluntary disclosure will need to be aware of some recent changes to tax forms used to report information to the IRS.

What Is Voluntary Disclosure Practice?

Taxpayers are encouraged to disclose information to the IRS that may affect the determination of the taxes they are required to pay. Some disclosures may be civil in nature, for example if the taxpayer has made an honest and nonwillful mistake and omitted disclosure of a foreign account required to be disclosed via annual Forms 114 (FBAR). Such disclosures may be made to the IRS via Streamlined Disclosure Procedures where taxpayers may be required to pay a civil penalty without criminal prosecution. However, the IRS Criminal Investigation (CI) division is focused on uncovering criminal violations of tax laws, and depending on its findings, it may choose to pursue criminal charges against non-compliant taxpayers. If such a taxpayer voluntarily discloses applicable information to the IRS, this may affect the CI division’s decisions on whether to recommend criminal prosecution. Voluntary Disclosure Practice is an option if a taxpayer has willfully violated tax laws, and taxpayers will be required to cooperate with the IRS to determine their tax liabilities and make arrangements to pay the taxes they owe, as well as any applicable penalties or interest.

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How Do Base Year Value Transfers Affect California Property Taxes?

 Posted on March 15, 2022 in Property Taxes

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1060261916.jpgHomeowners in California will often be subject to high property taxes. However, the state’s laws do provide some benefits for property owners by limiting the amount that property taxes can be increased each year. When a home is bought or sold, a reassessment will be performed to determine the property taxes that will apply based on the home’s current market value. In certain cases, homeowners may be able to avoid a reassessment by transferring the value of their current home to a new property. A recent change in the law has affected when these “base year value transfers” may be performed.

Proposition 19 and Base Year Value Transfers

California’s Revenue and Taxation Code was amended in 2021 after the passage of Proposition 19. New provisions regarding base year value transfers went into effect on April 1, 2021. These included changes to who may perform these types of transfers and the time limits for doing so. 

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Is Innocent Spouse Relief Available if a Person Did Not Sign a Joint Tax Return?

 Posted on February 22, 2022 in Taxation Law

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_446728771_20220222-223216_1.jpgThere are a variety of situations where taxpayers may need to respond to claims that they owe taxes to the IRS. In some cases, different forms of relief may be available that will absolve a person of their tax debts or allow them to reduce the amount they owe. Some taxpayers may be able to ask for innocent spouse relief, including when the IRS seeks to recover tax debts from a person after their divorce based on an audit of a joint tax return filed while they were married. A person may believe that they will qualify for innocent spouse relief if they had not signed a joint tax return, but they will need to understand how the IRS will address this issue.

The Tacit Consent Doctrine

Married couples will often divide different types of responsibilities, and one spouse may primarily handle matters related to a couple’s finances, including preparing and filing joint tax returns. In these situations, the other spouse may not have a full understanding of the income and assets that have been reported to the IRS, the types of deductions and credits that have been claimed, or other issues that affect the taxes they have paid or the refunds they have received.

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